fbpx

1. In the Caribbean, February is Reggae Month
2. The Rastafari practice of Ital – all about life energy – means many reggae musicians are vegetarian, including the late, great Bob Marley. Because meat is dead, Rastafarians believe it works against life’s energy
3. Bob Marley’s band The Wailers was once sacked on tour as a support band because they were proving much more popular than the main act
4. Marley’s last words to his son? “Money can’t buy life.”
5. ‘Skinhead’ reggae, faster and louder than normal, arrived in the late ’60s when a bunch of reggae artists started writing lyrics and music targeted at the growing skinhead movement… which in those days had nothing whatsoever to do with racism. Quite the opposite
6. Skinhead reggae bands include Toots & the Maytals, John Holt, and The Pioneers
7. Bob Marley had numerous legitimate children – it could be eleven, but it could be more… while it seems a bit out of order over here, Rastafarians believe in free love
8. Like many reggae artists Bob Marley believed cannabis was a healing herb and he was keen to support its legalization
9. Reggae developed after rocksteady, which in turn was born of ska. The chords are usually played on the off beat, AKA the skank. It’s played in 4/4 time with really simple chord progressions and loads of heavy bass
10. Reggae has spawned more than 15 different musical forms in total
11. Queen Elizabeth once presented Beenie Man with the ‘reggae artist of the year’ award’
12. Some say reggae came about partly by accident when reverb on an amp coincidentally mimicked the chord on the offbeat. It sounded great and the rest is history…
13. What’s the best ever selling reggae album? No surprise really, it’s Bob Marley’s Legend
14. What is roots reggae? It’s a spiritual subgenre of reggae, with lyrics often talking about ‘god’. Bob Marley’s music was mostly roots
15. What about dub? Dub is another reggae subgenre, this time about re-mixing material. For example Mikey Dread and Augustus Pablo
16. Bob Marley was shot in 1976, a few days before he was due to play a concert to promote peace between violent rival factions in Jamaica
17. In 1994 Bob Marley was included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
18. What is Lovers Rock? It’s a love song-based reggae subgenre which started in the 1970s in South London
19. What is dancehall? It involves a DJ rapping and singing over a raw, fast reggae-inspired rhythm
20. In the early days it was pretty dangerous playing reggae. Most of the original artists were shot at one time or another by violent rival gangs and some even died
21. These days there are mopre than 2000 reggae festivals held every year, right across the world
22. What is Reggae en Espanol? It’s Spanish reggae and it’s one of the planet’s most popular kinds of music, particularly so in the Caribbean and South America
23. What is Reggaeton? It blends reggae and dancehall music, and is particularly popular in Latin America

Leave a Reply