In honour of An Evening of Roots, Rock, Reggae, read about the birth of modern reggae and its most celebrated artist.
Known as the “sound of Jamaica”, reggae was born in the late 1960s out of a mixture of different styles. Coming from the term “rege-rege” meaning ragged clothing, Reggae was initially a mix of Jamaican Ska and American jazz. It was not until almost a decade later when a huge Rastafarian influence took over and became more of how we know it today.
By far the largest contribution to reggae is Bob Marley and his band, The Wailers. They were able to bring the genre to a world stage and really paved the road for new artists. After his untimely death at age 36, Marley’s music continues to be extremely beloved all over the world. In his lifetime, he has been awarded Rolling Stone’s Band of the Year and posthumously he was awarded the Grammy for Lifetime Achievement in music and was placed at #11 on the Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
Here in the UK, Bob Marley has had a tremendous influence. In 2006, his first residence here was given a blue plaque by Her Majesty’s Foreign Office. In a study by BBC News, Marley was voted as one of the top lyricists of all time and his hit “One Love” was even named song of the millennium by BBC. Below is a list of Marley’s Top 10 Hits. How many do you know?
10. “Easy Skanking”
9. “Stir It Up”
8. “Waiting in Vain”
7. “Satisfy My Soul”
6. “Get Up, Stand Up”
5. “Soul Rebel”
3. “Three Little Birds”
2. “Buffalo Soldier”
1. “Redemption Song”
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