Drumming and dancing have been part of Africa’s culture for ages as ceremonial activities initiated by ancestors to appease the gods. Unwillingly stolen away from Africa to the Caribbean, African music and rhythm found their way to these islands in the form of reggae music. Since then, reggae has acted like a magnet, creating a huge impact on the global music scene.
This type of music, which carries a prophetic message and spiritual lyrics, continues to influence musical genres, cultures, and societies throughout the world, contributing to the development of new counterculture movements in Europe, America, and Africa.
“Reggae in the bathroom, Reggae in the bedroom, Reggae everywhere, Reggae in jail, Reggae in church, everybody likes it,” sings Lucky Dube.
In this book, the writer speaks to some of the masters behind the contemporary reggae and African music. The influence and impact of these great musicians is internationally known and is recounted with warm, sincere, and unrivaled craftsmanship that distinguishes them in the music world. Read the live performances and interviews of:
Anthony B, Joseph Hill-Culture, Gregory Isaacs, U-Roy, Capleton, Julian Marley, Prince Malachi, Dean Frazer, Luciano-Jepthar McClymont, Johnny Clarke, Alton Ellis, Lucky Dube, Julian Murvin, Andrew Tosh, ASWAD, Live Wyya, Seun Kuti, Femi Kuti, Faytinga, Manu Dibango, Tutu Poane, HeartWash KingSillah, Leroy Brown and The Congos.
Reggae Music has penetrated into Africa, the continent of its origin. It’s interesting to know how Jimmy Cliff’s reggae tunes changed the lifestyles of many Africans, including Ghanaians in the ghettos, followed by Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, inspiring many musicians including Alpha Blondy and Lucky Dube in Africa and Alborosie and Gentleman in Europe.
This beautifully illustrated, colour photo book is one of the most fascinating and interesting works ever written about reggae and African music.
Joel Savage was born in the central region of Ghana, Cape Coast, on January 19, 1957. He attended the Ebenezer Secondary School and Accra High School in Accra, Ghana. He later studied at the Ghana Institute of Journalism.
Joel was a freelance writer for the Daily Graphic, Ghanaian Times and the Weekly Spectator in Accra, Ghana. He became a naturalized citizen of Sierra Leone in 1985 and of Belgium in 2008.
He is an accredited, card-holding member of the Flemish Journalists’ Association and lives in Antwerp, Belgium, with his wife and three children.
Reggae Music is not much promoted by music television stations, including MTV, yet the impact of the influence of reggae and those behind the music, Rastafarians, is enormous worldwide. Everyone knows it’s because of the message the music carries. The truth is a Rastaman wouldn't sing about luxury when he faces hunger and poverty. He would not praise the judge and the presidents when continuously the people are been denied justice.
Slavery has ruined his culture, degraded him, lost his identity and has taking him by force under sub-human conditions to another place. An unknown island now called Jamaica. Taking his psychological instruments with him Africa’s music find its way to the Caribbean as Reggae and the migration of Jamaicans to England, came along with scores of people with musical experience and talents. Reggae music, therefore, gained followers within the Jamaican community.
It is therefore not surprised to see the influence of reggae strongly in Britain and other parts of the world where Jamaicans settled. In Britain exists scores of reggae stars including Maxi Priest, Sugar Minotte, Prince Malachi, Tipper Irie, Maxi Priest, Linton Kwesi Johnson etc, and other formidable groups like Steel Pulse, Musical Youth, and Aswad. There are many reggae artists I never had the opportunity to meet but I know how their roles in the music industry change the reggae world.
I will therefore give credit to those musicians in the names of Ijah Man Levi, Bunny Wailer, Max Romeo, Dennis Brown, Don Carlos, Macka B, Winston Rodney, alias Burning Spear, Peter Tosh, Jacob Miller, Augustos Pablo, Mutabaruka, Pablo Moses, Lee Scratch Perry, Beres Hammond, Jimmy Cliff, Eric Donaldson, John Holt, Desmond Decker, Barrington Levi, Norman Washington Jackson, famously known as Tiger, Joseph Cotton, Shinehead and hundreds out there whose names didn’t appear.
“Reggae music will be there forever,” said Lucky Dube. The music has taken a new dimension with both old and new artists such as Shaggy, Mad Cobra, Super Cat, Bushman, Mickey Spice, Taurus Riley, Buju Banton, Sizzla, Shabba Ranks, Everton Blender and the sons of Bob Marley. Damian, Ziggy, Julian, Stephen, Kymani, Alberto Dascola, alias Alborosie, Timann Otto alias Gentleman.
Writing about the history of reggae music without mentioning the names of certain groups which added flavour and savour to reggae would be totally incomplete. I will therefore give credit to these groups, Mighty Diamond, The Cimarron, Toots and the Maytals, The Abyssinians, Black Uhuru, Third World, The Heptones, The Skatalites, Israel Vibration, Morgan Heritage, The Gladiators, The Pioneers, The Wailing Souls, The Pioneers, The Ethiopians, Jolly Brothers, UB 40 and Inner Circle.
Within a short period after meeting the reggae stars I interviewed, painfully death has taken away four of the reggae stars I met away. Joseph Hill of Culture group, Lucky Dube, Gregory Isaacs and Alton Ellis are gone. Their space, no one can fill but the roles they played in the history of reggae shall remain indelible. My condolence to their families, relatives and fans who received the messages with shock.
1. African Descendants As Jamaicans
2. The Prophesy Of The Birth Of A Nazarene
(The Significance of Marcus Garvey and Haile Selassie To The Rastaman)
(The Agony of Ethiopia After The Death of Haile Selassie
3. The Influence of Jimmy Cliff’s music in Africa
(Alpha Blondy and the Solar System- How his music has influenced Africans, After Jimmy Cliff)
4. FAYTINGA: The Freedom Fighter Turned Musician
5. Lucky Dube In Concert. July 4 2004, Linkeroever-Antwerp
6. Lucky Dube speaks to Joel Savage
7. The Fatal Shooting That Killed Lucky Dube
8. Culture Live At Pole-Pole Festival. Gent-Belgium
9. Face To Face With The Great Joseph Hill Of Culture
10. The Sudden Death Of Joseph Hill
11. Julian Marley At Hove-Live Festival
12. Johnny Clarke At Hove-Live Festival
13. “I have Never been Out of Music, I am Always In Music”- Johnny Clarke
14. “In My Song, Jah Is My Light And My Salvation”- Prince Malachi
15. The Influence Of Aswad on British Reggae Scene
16. “I Am Back To Entertain My Fans”- Alton Ellis
17. Alton Ellis Passes Away
18. Seun Kuti At Sfinks Festival. Boechout-Belgium, July 31, 2005
19. Tutu Poane Performs At Mano Mundo Festival
20. Manu Dibango At Pole-Pole Festival. Gent-Belgium, July 21, 2005
21. Andrew Tosh Brings Father On Stage
22. “Definitely, My Father Was My Biggest Influence In Music”- Andrew Tosh
23. Luciano Storms ‘Open Air Theatre’ in Antwerp
24. Luciano Speaks About His Passion And Inspiration In Music
25. At ‘Open Air Theatre’ with Dean Frazer
26. Femi Kuti Sings Against Obasanjo and other Corrupt Politicians
27. “Poverty is created By Man Not God”- Anthony B
28. Junior Murvin Entertain Fans At Venue ‘Petrol’
29. Meeting Leroy Brown, One Of The Pioneers Of Reggae
30. The Congos, Keeping Reggae Alive
31. Meeting Rasta Ambassador U-Roy
32. Gregory Isaacs Steals The Heart Of Ladies At ‘Petrol’
33. Gregory Passes Away
34. Roots Rock Reggae Group Called ‘Live Wyya’
35. Capleton Explains The Message Of His Music
36. The Diversity Of Africa’s Music And Culture In Europe And America
37. King Sillah, An Upcoming Reggae Star In Antwerp