Jamaica is known for its jerked chicken, clear waters, and more notably for Reggae, which makes
1000 WordsApr 23, 20194 Pages
Jamaica is known for its jerked chicken, clear waters, and more notably for Reggae, which makes Jamaican culture globally recognized. However, despite its mainstream entertainment value of today, reggae is not only music; however it is a way of life for some Jamaicans. It originated as a political form of protest against the colonial forces operative in the social context of Jamaican life. Musical ambassadors like the Abyssinians, Burning Spear, Sir Jimmy Cliff, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, and Rita Marley, along with many others, can be credited with introducing reggae music to the world and giving it international recognition. Yet, despite its popularity, many do not understand the cultural and political climate in which Reggae…show more content…
Artists would essentially hit “two birds with one stone.” The first bird was the ability to simply perform their music. However the second bird isn’t as simple as the first, it is the meaning. The second was the protest against the Babylon system and oppression. To the Rastafari, the Babylon system is any and all oppressive and unequal practices in Jamaica. Babylon began to surface throughout reggae music. Reggae lyrics are suggestive of the reggae protest songs. Bob Marley is a great example of capturing his strong negative views of Babylon. Reggae protest songs proved to be a force with power, both socially and politically. Ironically the Jamaican government would use reggae as a vehicle to promote its views (King, xiv).
Reggae never lost and will never lose its association with music and the Rastafari culture. It remains a revolutionary form of explanatory art. Music never remains stagnate, it will always evolve. Roots reggae; a sub-genre of Reggae, was dominant in Jamaica in the cohort of 1975-1980. Roots reggae tackles the life of a “ghetto sufferer” and discusses truths and rights (Barrow and Dalton, 129). Dancehall and the incorporation of hip hop rhythms was the new addition of reggae. Dancehall became widely used after the death of Bob Marley in 1981 (Barrow and Dalton, 231). In the 1990’s there comes a new generation of reggae artists. It was able to combine conscious lyrics with the distinctive hardcore dancehall beats. Current reggae artists