Jimmy Cliff AKA James Chambers.
reggae musician, multi-instrumentalist, singer and actor.
Jimmy Cliff is best known among mainstream audiences for songs such as "Wonderful World, Beautiful People", "Many Rivers to Cross", "You Can Get It If You Really Want", "The Harder They Come", "Reggae Night", and "Hakuna Matata", and his covers of Cat Stevens's "Wild World" and Johnny Nash's "I Can See Clearly Now" from the film Cool Runnings.
Peter Tosh AKA Winston Hubert McIntosh.
Peter Tosh, (born Winston Hubert McIntosh; 19 October
1944 – 11 September 1987) was a Jamaican reggae musician.
Along with Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer, he was one of the core members of the band the Wailers (1963–1976) after which he established himself as a successful solo artist and a promoter of Rastafari. Along with Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer during the late 1960s, Peter Tosh became a devotee of Rastafari.
One of the beliefs of the Rastas is that Haile Selassie, the Emperor of Ethiopia, was either an embodiment of God or a messenger of God, leading the three friends to be baptized by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
Sadly Peter Tosh was murdered in 1987 during a home invasion.
Burning Spear AKA Winston Rodney.
Winston Rodney OD (born 1 March 1945), better known by the stage name Burning Spear, is a Jamaican roots reggae vocalist and musician. Burning Spear is a Rastafarian and one of the most influential and long-standing roots artists to emerge from the 1970s
Burning Spear was originally Rodney's group, and included bass singer Rupert Willington. The duo auditioned for Dodd in 1969 which led to the release of their debut single "Door Peep" They were then joined by tenor Delroy Hinds. The trio moved to work with Jack Ruby in 1975. Their first recording with Ruby, "Marcus Garvey", was released as a single, giving them an immediate hit, and was followed by "Slavery Days".
In 2000 Home To My Roots Tour he performed in Cape Town, South Africa alongside other reggae icon Joseph Culture Hill.
The Maytals AKA Toots and The Maytals.
Toots and the Maytals, are one of the best known ska
and rocksteady vocal groups. The Maytals were formed in the early 1960s and were key figures in popularizing reggae music. Frontman Toots Hibbert's soulful vocal style has been compared to Otis Redding, and led him to be named one of the 100 Greatest Singers by Rolling Stone.
Their 1968 single "Do the Reggay", was the first song to use the word "reggae", naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience. As Island Records founder Chris Blackwell says, "The Maytals were unlike anything else ... sensational, raw and dynamic. In 1966. With Byron Lee the Maytals won the first-ever Jamaican Independence Festival Popular Song Competition with their original song "Bam Bam"
Sly and Robbir AKA Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespear.
The duo changed the face of reggae several times in 1976, they introduced a harder beat called "Rockers", which quickly replaced the then-prevalent "One Drop" style, then introduced the "Rub A Dub" sound in the early 1980s. Sly and Robbie were important in developing the trend towards computer-assisted music and programming in the mid-1980s.
Desmond Dekker (16 July 1941 – 25 May 2006)
Dekker was a Jamaican ska, rocksteady and reggae singer and songwriter and musician. Together with his backing group the Aces (consisting of Wilson James and Easton Barrington Howard), he had one of the earliest international reggae hits with "Israelites" (1968). Other hits include "007 (Shanty Town)" (1967), "It Miek" (1969) and "You Can Get It If You Really Want" (1970).
One of his best known songs, "007 (Shanty Town)". The song established Dekker as a rude boy icon in Jamaica, In 1968 Dekker's "Israelites" topped the UK Singles Chart in April 1969 and peaking in the Top Ten of the US Billboard Hot 100 in June 1969. Dekker was the first Jamaican artist to have a hit record in the US with a form and style that was purely Jamaican.
Lascelle "Wiss" Bulgin, Albert "Apple Gabriel" Craig, and Cecil "Skelly" Spence all overcame childhood polio, and went on to be one of the most successful roots groups to form in Jamaica in the 1970s. The trio initially met as children at a rehabilitation center.
In 1976, their debut release was the single "Why Worry", released on the Twelve Tribes label late that year. The single was successful enough for the group to be offered support slots at shows by artists such as Dennis Brown, Inner Circle, and Bob Marley. They then began working with producer Tommy Cowan, releasing "The Same Song" on his Top Ranking label in 1977, and an album of the same name followed in 1978.
The album, and its dub counterpart, Israel Tafari (aka Same Song Dub) were a success internationally, leading to a deal with EMI label Harvest to reissue the album in the UK, the label also releasing a second album, Unconquered People in 1980.
The group relocated to New York in 1982 to seek professional health care, but struggled to break through there and they split up.
Ken Booth, Born 22 March 1948
Ken Boothe OD is a Jamaican vocalist known for his distinctive vibrato and timbre. Boothe achieved an international reputation as one of Jamaica's finest vocalists through a series of crossover hits that appealed to both reggae fans and mainstream audiences. Boothe's first solo tracks were recorded in 1966, He had almost immediate success with songs including "The Train Is Coming" and the following year, The rocksteady classic "Moving Away" was released in 1967.
Boothe released "Everything I Own" on Trojan Records, Boothe's reggae version of the song reached Number One in the UK Singles Chart on 26 October 1974, and stayed at the top of the charts for three weeks. Boothe had one more hit in the UK Singles Chart during the 1970s, "Crying Over You", which made No. 11
Boothe was awarded the Order of Distinction for his contribution to Jamaican music by the Jamaican government in 2003.
Johnny Nash AKA John Lester Nash Born 19 August 1940.
Johnny Nash, Jr. is an American reggae and pop music singer-songwriter, best known in the US for his 1972 hit, "I Can See Clearly Now". I Can See Clearly Now sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc by the R.I.A.A. in November 1972. "I Can See Clearly Now" reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 on November 4, 1972, and remained top the chart for four weeks, and also spent the same four weeks atop the adult contemporary chart. "There Are More Questions Than Answers" was a third hit single. Nash's biggest hits were the early
reggae (rocksteady) tunes "Hold Me Tight" (a number-five hit in the US in 1968 and the UK, the tune used more than a year earlier in Score commercials) and "Stir It Up" (1971), In the UK, his biggest hit was with the song "Tears On My Pillow" which reached number one in the UK Singles Chart in July 1975 for one week a cover of Sam Cooke's "Wonderful World" and "Let’s Go Dancing" in 1979, Followed by the mid-1980s with the album Here Again (1986), which was preceded by the minor UK hit,
Bob Marley and The Wailers.
Bob Marley and the Wailers were a Jamaican reggae band led by Bob Marley. It developed from the earlier ska vocal group, the Wailers, created by Marley with Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer in 1963. The original lineup featured Junior Braithwaite on vocals, Bob Marley on guitar, Peter Tosh on keyboard, Neville Livingston (a.k.a. Bunny Wailer) on drums, and Cherry Smith and Beverley Kelso on backing vocals. By 1966 Braithwaite, Kelso and Smith had left the band, which then consisted of the trio Livingston, Marley and Tosh. After Bunny Wailer and Peter Tosh left the band in 1974, Bob Marley formed Bob Marley and the Wailers with himself as guitarist, songwriter and main singer, the Wailers Band as the backing band, The Wailers Band included the brothers Carlton Barrett and "Family Man" Barrett on drums and bass respectively, Junior Marvin and Al Anderson playing lead guitar, Tyrone Downie and Earl "Wya" Lindo playing keyboard, and Alvin "Seeco" Patterson playing percussion. The I Three consisted of Bob Marley's wife Rita Marley, Judy Mowatt and Marcia Griffiths.
Alton Ellis AKA Alton Nehemiah Ellis.
Alton Nehemiah Ellis OD (1 September 1938 – 10 October 2008) was a Jamaican singer-songwriter. One of the innovators of rocksteady who was given the informal title "Godfather of Rocksteady". During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Ellis recorded for some of Jamaica's top producers and he also began to produce his own records, including "My Time Is The Right Time" (1968) and "The Message". He had two hits with Lloyd Daley in "Deliver Us" (1970) and "Back to Africa" (1971)
The release of "Rock Steady" (1967) the first song to refer to the name of the new genre, heralded the new direction Jamaican popular music was taking. Mr Soul of Jamaica album is regarded as one of the definitive rocksteady albums. In 2004, Ellis was awarded the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican government in recognition of his achievements. In 2006, he was inducted into the International Reggae And World Music Awards Hall Of Fame.
In December 2007, he was admitted to hospital in London for treatment of cancer, Ellis died of cancer on 10 October 2008 at Hammersmith Hospital, London.
Marcia Lyneth Griffiths Born 23 November 1949
Bob and Marcia were a Jamaican vocal duo, that consisted of Bob Andy and Marcia Griffiths. They had a #5 UK hit single in 1970 with "Young, Gifted and Black". "To Be Young, Gifted and Black" is a song by Nina Simone It was written in memory of Simone's late friend Lorraine Hansberry, author of the play A Raisin in the Sun, who had died in 1965 aged 34. The song was released by Simone in 1969. The song was also featured on her 1970 album Black Gold and was considered an anthem of the Civil Rights Movement. Released as a single, it peaked at number eight on the R&B chart and number 76 on the Hot 100. They followed up with "Pied Piper", which peaked at #11 in the UK Singles Chart in 1971. Those two releases spent a total of twenty five weeks in that chart in a period of less than eighteen months.The song's title came from the German folklore fairy tale and its titular character The Pied Piper of Hamelin.
Horace Andy AKA Horace Hinds Born 19 February 1951.
Horace Andy is a Jamaican roots reggae songwriter and singer, known for his distinctive vocals and hit songs such as "Government Land", as well as "Angel", "Spying Glass" and "Five Man Army" with English trip hop duo Massive Attack. He is also famous for a cover version of "Ain't No Sunshine". Andy is often described as one of the most respected and influential singers in Jamaica. One of Andy's most enduring songs, "Skylarking", first appeared on Dodd's Jamaica Today compilation album, it was released as a single, going on to top the Jamaican chart. Andy had a second Jamaican number one single in 1973 with "Children of Israel". In the 1970s. This era produced a series of singles "Just Say Who", "Don't Try To Use Me", "You Are My Angel", "Zion Gate", "I've Got to Get Away", and a new version of "Something on My Mind".
Andy's 1978 album Pure Ranking had anticipated the rise of dancehall reggae, and he was a key figure in the early development of the genre, confirmed by 1982's Dance Hall Stylealbum.
Lorenzo Aitken aka Laurie Aitken (22 April 1927 – 17 July 2005)
Lorenzo Aitken better known as Laurel Aitken, was an influential Caribbean singer and one of the pioneers of Jamaican ska music. He is often referred to as the "Godfather of Ska". in 1963 he began working with Pama Records. He recorded hits such as "Fire in Mi Wire" and "Landlord and Tenants", which led to a wider recognition outside of Jamaica and the UK. This cemented his position as one of ska's leading artists and earned him the nicknames The Godfather of Ska, and later Boss Skinhead.
He gained a loyal following not only among the West Indian community, but also among mods, skinheads and other ska fans. He had hit records in the United Kingdom and other countries in the 1950s through to the 1970s on labels such as Blue Beat, Pama, Trojan, Rio, Dr. Bird, Nu-Beat, Ska-Beat,Hot Lead and Dice.
In 1980, with ska enjoying a resurgence in the wake of the 2 Tone movement, Aitken had his only success in the UK Singles Chart with "Rudi Got Married" (#60) released on I-Spy Records (the label created and managed by Secret Affair.
Aswad are a long-lasting British reggae group, noted for adding strong R&B and soul influences to the reggae sound. They have been performing since the mid-1970s, having released a total of 21 albums. "Aswad" is Arabic for "black". All members of Aswad are UK descendants of immigrants from the Caribbean.
Among Aswad's catalogue of hits is "Don't Turn Around", a UK No. 1 hit in 1988, originally recorded by Tina Turner as a B-side to her "Typical Male" single. They followed this up with UK No. 11 hit "Give A Little Love", and a reggae-flavoured rendition of "Best of My Love", first popularised and written by The Eagles. In 1989, they contributed the single "Set Them Free" to Greenpeace
Aswad released their most recent material in 2009, with the album City Lock. They released singles "What Is Love?" and "Do That Thing" in the same year.
Dennis Emmanuel Brown CD (1 February 1957 – 1 July 1999)
Dennis Brown career, which began in the late 1960s he recorded more than 75 albums and was one of the major stars of lovers rock, a subgenre of reggae. Bob Marley cited Brown as his favourite singer dubbing him "The Crown Prince of Reggae", His first recording session for Clement "Coxsone" Dodd's Studio One label, yielded the single "No Man is an Island", in 1969. The single received steadily increasing airplay for almost a year before becoming a huge hit throughout Jamaica. In 1972, Brown was asked by Joe Gibbs to record an album and one of the tracks recorded was "Money in my Pocket", was a hit with UK reggae audiences. In 1976 Brown voiced two tracks at Lee "Scratch" Perry's Black Ark studio, "Take a Trip to Zion" and "Wolf and Leopard", the latter was a hit in Jamaica and became one of Brown's most popular songs, with lyric's criticizing criminals who "rode the natty dread bandwagon" In 1978, Brown released the deejay version "Cool Runnings" this gave brown his first UK Top 40 hit, reaching number 14 the following year and becoming one of the biggest international hits in Jamaica's history.