|11 Jun 2006, 04:49||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2004
Reggae as a genre could be called a hybridisation of Western African rhythms and European melody and harmony. Developed in Jamaica, the term is also used to describe or label such genres as ska, ragga, dub, rocksteady and dancehall. Reggae has two main distinguishing features however that set it apart from it’s predecessors/relatives musically; the “skank” (regular chops on the backbeat to maintain rhythm), played by a rhythm guitarist, as well as the other rhythmic device, the “one drop” (bass or kick drum striking on the third beat of each measure). This subsequent rhythm that is produced by these techniques is often described as syncopated. It is also typically slower than the related styles of music. This was to ensure a relaxed and care-free feel to the music. The other main distinguishing characteristic is the reversal of roles, frequent and intermittent, of the bass drum and guitar.
Lyrically, Rastafarianism influences much of the content, hardly surprising as the religion, like the music, evolved in Jamaica. Rastafarians believe that the smoking of “Ganja”, or marijuana, brings them closer to God. As a result, marijuana is brought up in lyrics, is steeped in the culture, as well as smoked by many artists of the genre (Peter Tosh even went so far as to smoke marijuana on stage during sets…not infrequently!). It was undoubtedly due to this controversial practice that Reggae copped a lot of flak as a genre most notably in the 60’s and 70’s.
Some notable reggae artists, and their works, include:
Bob Marley – Buffalo Soldier
Jimmy Cliff – American Dream
Peter Tosh – Legalize It
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|Some of my own reggae music||Fire_Warrior 032||The Music Forum||5||06 Jul 2009 20:07|