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What came first Ska or Reggae? - This is one question which has been asked by some of our visitors on a daily basis.
The first official music coming out of Jamaica is known as Ska. Ska music was originated in the 1950s. Ska combined elements of Caribbean mento and calypso with American jazz and rhythm and blues.
Credit should be given to Prince Buster, Clement "Coxsone" Dodd, and Duke Reid who formed sound systems to play American rhythm and blues and then began recording their own songs.
In the mid-1960s another genre of music was born in Jamaica, this is a spin-off from Ska music, this was called Rocksteady. A successor of ska and a precursor to reggae, rocksteady was the dominant style of music in Jamaica for nearly two years, performed by many of the artists who helped establish reggae.
Rocksteady groups such as The Techniques, The Righteous Flames and The Gaylads singers such as Delroy Wilson, Phyllis Dillon and Roy Shirley musicians such as Jackie Mittoo, Tommy McCook and Lynn Taitt are credited for leading the way with Rocksteady music.
The term rocksteady comes from a popular (slower) dance style mentioned in the Alton Ellis song 'Rocksteady' that matched the new sound. Some rocksteady songs became hits outside Jamaica, as with ska, helping to secure the international base reggae music has today.
Reggae is a music genre that originated in Jamaica in the late 1960s. The term also denotes the modern popular music of Jamaica and its diaspora.
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.
To answer your question what came first Ska or Reggae? Ska music was before Reggae, you can say that Ska is the mother of Rocksteady, Reggae and Dancehall music.
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