Reggae Music And Its Origins

Reggae Music is a genre of music which originated on the island of Jamaica in the late 1960s to early 1970s.

How can you differentiate reggae from another genre of music? It is instantly recognizable from the counterpoint between the bass and drum downbeat, and the offbeat rhythm section. One of the most easily recognizable elements is its offbeat rhythms, staccato chords played by a guitar or piano (or both) on the offbeats of the measure.

The bass sound in reggae is thick, heavy and equalized so the upper frequencies are removed and the lower frequencies emphasized. The guitar in reggae usually plays on the offbeat of the rhythm. It is common for reggae to be sung in Jamaican Patois, Jamaican English, and Iyaric dialects.

Bob Marley - Reggae Music's Legend

The tempo of reggae is usually slower paced than ska but faster than Rocksteady.  It's documented that Reggae Music was originated from Ska Music and Rocksteady music.

Bob Marley is said to have claimed that the word reggae came from a Spanish term for "the king's music".

The immediate origins of reggae were in ska and Rocksteady, from the latter, reggae took over the use of the bass as a percussion instrument.

The genre is very popular amongst the Rastafarian community in Jamaica and relates to news, Love, social gossip, Social commentary, and political comment.

When one speaks of this great genre of music (Reggae), the name Bob Marley is the first thing that comes to mind.  Bob Marley is credited as the man who helped to actually propel reggae music to the world.

Where is the Word Reggae Originated? -  A 1968 single by Toots and the Maytals, "Do the Reggay" was the first popular song to use the word "reggae," effectively naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience.

Some key players in the origin of reggae music are Jackie Jackson from Toots and the Maytals, Carlton Barrett from Bob Marley and the Wailers, Lloyd Brevett from The Skatalites, Paul Douglas from Toots and the Maytals, Lloyd Knibb from The Skatalites, Winston Grennan, Sly Dunbar,  and Anthony "Benbow" Creary from The Upsetters.

The 1990s into the late 2000s, Reggae Music was pushed onto the back burner in Jamaica, this was due to the huge popularity of  Dancehall Music, a sub-genre of reggae.

Dancehall Music is a spin-off of reggae music, it also helps the influences the origins of Hip Hop Music.

Europe and Asia - The European market was still ablaze with reggae music to the point where a number of Reggae festivals started popping up all over Europe. Reggae is very popular in places such as Holland, England, Italy, Austria, Estonia, Israel, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Germany, Japan, Canada, and the USA.

"The Revival" - In 2012-2017

A new generation of artists has now put the genre back on the front burner.  Thanks to artists such as Chronixx, Protoje, Agent Sasco, Jesse Royal, The Marley Brothers Damian Marley and Stephen Marley, Jah 9, Keznamdi, Dre Island, Bugle, Iba Mahr and Nesbeth some of the main players on the reggae revival field.

In Jamaica, although dancehall music and Hip Hop/Pop Music is the popular choice of music, authentic reggae is one of the biggest sources of income.

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