Articles Comments

» BREAKING NEWS, GUEST RUNDOWNS » THE 10 BEST REGGAE ARTISTS EVER, ACCORDING TO THE WEBSITE AXS.COM!

THE 10 BEST REGGAE ARTISTS EVER, ACCORDING TO THE WEBSITE AXS.COM!

By: Marcia Hudgel AXS Contributor—-

Reggae music has its origins in Jamaica in the mid 1960’s, emerging through ska and rocksteady styles of music that were popular at the time. It is heavy based with a driving rhythm. When one thinks of Jamaica, it’s hard not to think of reggae music. Many great reggae artists emerged, with several of them using their music as a platform to speak of social injustice and praise Jah, although others kept the lyrics a little more light-hearted. Here are 10 of the best Reggae bands or performers of all time.

Bob Marley & The Wailers

Bob Marley & The Wailers

Bob Marley & The Wailers

The most iconic reggae artists ever, Bob Marley & Wailers brought reggae music to a more international stage. The Wailers got their start in 1963 as a ska group with Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer and Peter Tosh. Band members changed throughout the decades and although Marley & Tosh passed many years ago, different formations of The Wailers still tour. Bunny Wailer lives in Jamaica to this day. The Wailers songs were very political, talking of injustices in Jamaica and the world over. Their influence can be heard in several genres of music. Their children and family members carry on the reggae torch performing internationally to this day.

Burning Spear

Burning Spear

Burning Spear

After an encounter with Bob Marley while walking up the hills of St. Ann’s in Jamaica, Burning Spear (Winston Rodney) went to Studio One on Marley’s suggestion and started recording reggae music. Burning Spear has been performing for over 40 years and spreads a message of love and peace to his fans. He makes his music and performances spiritually uplifting as he delivers his message and the beliefs of political activist, Marcus Garvey. He still performs to this day and if there’s a chance to see him, take it.

JimmyCliff3

Jimmy Cliff

Jimmy Cliff has been performing for over 50 years and is still going strong. Best known for the 1972 movie and soundtrack, The Harder They Come, Cliff has continued to record and released his latest record in 2013. He has a vast musical history and has won Grammy awards and was inducted into The Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame. He spreads a message of love and peace, but isn’t afraid to speak out politically as well.

Peter Tosh

Peter Tosh

Peter Tosh

Peter Tosh went on to have a successful solo career after leaving The Wailers in 1974. He was known for his militant political views. He was a very vocal and proud Rastafarian and also often spoke of and sang about legalizing marijuana, with the song, “Legalize It”, being one of his most popular. He was murdered in 1987 in his home after a break in.

Toots Hibbert

Toots Hibbert

Toots And The Maytals

The Maytals first got together in 1962 and began recording at Studio One. The Maytals kept their songs on the more happy, positive side with Toots’ sweet soulful vocals. Toots and The Maytals recorded and toured endlessly and became a very popular and successful group with several Grammy nominations and international fame. Their songs have influenced many younger musicians in all genres of music and the song, “Do the reggay” in 1968 is considered the first use of the term.

IsraelVibration:ReggaeKnights

Israel Vibration

Israel Vibration consists of Lascelle “Wiss” Bulgin, Albert “Apple Gabriel” Craig and Cecil “Skelly” Spence who met as children in a rehabilitation center for polio, from which they each suffered. Israel Vibration would not form until 1970 though. By the mid-seventies, Israel Vibration was opening for such acts as Dennis Brown and Bob Marley. Dancing with their crutches onstage, the band puts on lively positive live shows. The band, minus Craig, is still active releasing its latest album, Play It Real, in 2015.

Culture

Culture

Culture

Another group formed in the 1970’s that rose to popularity is Culture. Culture’s sound was hard driving roots reggae and the band became extremely popular in Jamaica as well as in the UK with punk rock fans. The band made several records and continue to tour to this day, although Joseph Hill’s son, Kenyatta, took over the lead vocals after his father’s passing in 2006.

Desmond Dekker

Desmond Dekker

Desmond Dekker

Desmond Dekker helped pave the way worldwide for reggae music when “Israelites” became a hit in both the UK and the US in 1968 and 1969. His music, although not as violent or militant as some of the other artists of the time, introduced some of the social injustice going on in Jamaica with the rude boy culture in the 1960’s and ’70’s. He had hits throughout the 1970’s, but his record sales fell off some in the 1980’s. Dekker passed away in 2006.

Sly & Robbie

Sly & Robbie

Sly and Robbie

Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare are two of the best known reggae music producers and performers in Jamaica. It is estimated that they have played or produced on some 200,000 recordings. After producing many acts, they decided to form their own group in the mid 1970’s. Their music is rhythm centric and they are credited with starting up the “Rub A Dub” sound that started in the 1980’s as well as using more digital computer sounds in their music. They continue to produce music with some of the biggest music celebrities of recent years, including Khalifa and No Doubt.

Steel Pulse

Steel Pulse

Steel Pulse

Formed in Birmingham, England in 1975, Steel Pulse is a roots reggae band that often sings of social injustice and racism. The band was banned from playing clubs in Britain because of their outspoken Rastafari beliefs, but they still got acclaim as they began opening for acts such as Burning Spear. The band played their first U.S. concert the night of Bob Marley’s funeral and became the first reggae band to ever play The Tonight Show. The band is still spreading their message, recording and performing live all over the world.

Reggae is still popular to this day and it’s influence is heard in many styles of music. Some of today’s big reggae stars, although many have been performing for many years at this point, would include Ziggy Marley, 10 Ft. Ganja Plant, John Brown’s Body and many more. There are many reggae festivals around the country throughout the year, so head on out and start to feel irie.

Written by

Filed under: BREAKING NEWS, GUEST RUNDOWNS

%d bloggers like this: