Reggae music has its origins in Jamaica in the mid 1960’s, reggae artists emerged, with several of them using their music as a platform to speak of social injustice. It is actually a genre influenced by mento and calypso music as well as ska, rocksteady, American jazz and R&B. Here is the list of top 10 reggae artists
Top 10 Best Reggae Bands and Artists
10. Black Uhuru
Black Uhuru is a Jamaican reggae group formed in 1972, initially as Uhuru, the Swahili word for ‘freedom’. They are one of the Best Reggae Bands. The group has undergone several line-up changes over the years, with Derrick “Duckie” Simpson as the mainstay. Their first release was a cover version of Curtis Mayfield’s “Romancing to the Folk Song”, which was followed by “Time is on Our Side”; Neither song was a success and they split up, with Carlos pursuing a solo career, as did Dennis, before joining The Wailing Souls. They had their most successful period in the 1980’s, with their album Anthem winning the first ever Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album in 1985.
Also Read: Top 10 Greatest Teen Pop Bands & Artists
9. Bunny Wailer
Bunny Wailer was born on 10 April 1947, also known as Bunny Livingston. He is a Jamaican singer songwriter and percussionist and was an original member of reggae group The Wailers along with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh. He is one of the Best Reggae Artists. He won Grammy award three-time and is considered one of the longtime standard-bearers of reggae music. Today, Bunny resides in Kingston and on a farm located in the interior of Jamaica (Saint Thomas), according to Bob Marley’s official website. Bunny Wailer and Beverley Kelso are the only surviving members of the original Wailers. In October 2017 he was awarded the Order of Merit by the Jamaican government, the nation’s fourth-highest honour.
8. Damian Marley
Damian Robert Nesta “Jr. Gong” Marley was born on 21 July 1978. He is a Jamaican reggae artist. Damian is the youngest son of reggae legend Bob Marley. Damian’s nickname Junior Gong is derived from his father’s nickname of Tuff Gong. Damian Robert is one of the Best Reggae Artists. Damian has been performing since the age of 13. With the backing of his father’s label, Tuff Gong, he released his 1996 debut album Mr. Marley. He then released his second studio album Halfway Tree. The name “Halfway Tree” comes from his mother, Cindy Breakspeare. His third album “Welcome to Jamrock” was released on 12 September 2005 in the US and 13 September 2005 in the UK. The album sold 86,000 copies in its first week of release. At the 2006 Grammy Awards, he won Best Reggae Album and Best Urban/Alternative Performance for Welcome to Jamrock. He is the only Jamaican reggae artist in history to win two Grammy Awards on the same night. Damian Marley released his 4th studio album, titled Stony Hill, in July 2017. Backed by the first single Nail Pon Cross, released in August 2016. The album won the Grammy award for Best Reggae Album at the 60th Annual Grammy Awards.
Also Read: Top 10 Most Anticipated New Shows of 2018
7. Steel Pulse
Steel Pulse are a roots reggae musical band, from the Handsworth area of Birmingham, England, which has a large number of Afro-Caribbean, Indian and other Asian migrants. After the band formed in 1975, their debut single release, “Kibudu, Mansetta And Abuku”, arrived on the small independent label Dip, and linked the plight of urban black youth with the image of a greater African homeland. They followed it with “Nyah Luv” for Anchor. They originally formed at Handsworth Wood Boys School. Steel Pulse were the first non-Jamaican act to win the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album. Steel Pulse is one of the Best Reggae Bands.
6. Ziggy Marley
David Nesta “Ziggy” Marley was born on 17 October 1968. He is a Jamaican musician and leader of the band Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers, and the son of reggae icon Bob Marley and Rita Marley. He is one of the Best Reggae Artists. After Bob Marley’s passing, Ziggy began performing in his place alongside the Wailers at various shows around Jamaica, and in 1984 the group went on tour in support of the year’s Bob Marley ’Legend’ compilation album release. He received The George and Ira Gershwin Award from UCLA during UCLA Spring Sing on May 19, 2017.
5. Toots & the Maytals
Toots and the Maytals, originally called The Maytals, are a Jamaican musical group and one of the best known ska and rocksteady vocal groups. The Maytals were formed in the early 1960’s and were key figures in popularizing reggae music. Their 1968 single “Do the Reggay”, was the first song to first use the word “reggae”, naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience. In 2017 Toots and the Maytals played Coachella Fest April 16 and 23 at 4:20 pm. Toots and the Maytals became the second reggae-based group to ever perform at the Coachella festival, after Chronixx in 2016. On July 29, 2017 Toots and The Maytals headlined the 35th anniversary of the WOMAD UK festival with a performance that was reported as “easily one of the true highlights of WOMAD 2017”. Toots and the Maytals are the Best Reggae Bands.
4. Burning Spear
Winston Rodney, usually known by the stage name Burning Spear was born on 1 March 1945 in Saint Ann’s Bay, Saint Ann, Jamaica. He is a Jamaican roots reggae singer and musician. He is one of the Best Reggae Artists. Burning Spear is a Rastafarian and one of the most influential and long-standing roots artists to emerge from the 1970’s. His 1999 album, Calling Rastafari brought his first Grammy Award in 2000, a feat which he repeated with Jah Is Real in 2009. Burning Spear was awarded the Order of Distinction in the rank of Officer on 15 October 2007. Burning Spear has won two Grammy Awards for Best Reggae Album; one at the 42nd Grammy Awards in 2000 for Calling Rastafari, and one for 2009’s Jah Is Real. He has been nominated for a total of 12 Grammy Awards.
Also Read: Top 10 Highest Grossing Hollywood Movies
3. Jimmy Cliff
James Chambers, professionally known as Jimmy Cliff was born on 1 April 1948,He is a Jamaican ska and reggae musician, multi-instrumentalist, singer, Best Reggae Artists and actor. Along with Bunny Wailer he is one of only two living musicians to hold the Order of Merit, the highest honour that can be granted by the Jamaican government for achievements in the arts and sciences. Cliff is best known among mainstream audiences for songs such as “Wonderful World, Beautiful People”, “Many Rivers to Cross”, “You Can Get It If You Really Want”, “The Harder They Come”, “Reggae Night”, and “Hakuna Matata”, and his covers of Cat Stevens’s “Wild World” and Johnny Nash’s “I Can See Clearly Now” from the film Cool Runnings. In December 2012, Cliff was named ‘Artist of the Year’ by digital newspaper the Caribbean Journal, citing his work on Rebirth.
2. Peter Tosh
Peter Tosh, as know as Winston Hubert McIntosh was born on 19 October 1944. He was a Jamaican reggae musician and Best Reggae Artists. Along with Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer, he was one of the core members of the band the Wailers (1963–1976), after which he established himself as a successful solo artist and a promoter of Rastafari. He was murdered in 1987 during a home invasion.
Also Read: Top 10 Romantic Movies Based on True Stories
1. Bob Marley
Robert Nesta Marley was born on 6 February 1945. He was a Jamaican singer-songwriter who became an international musical and cultural icon. Starting out in 1963 with the group the Wailers, he forged a distinctive songwriting and vocal style that would later resonate with audiences worldwide. After the Wailers disbanded in 1974, Marley pursued a solo career upon his relocation to England that culminated in the release of the album Exodus in 1977, which established his worldwide reputation and elevated his status as one of the world’s best-selling artists of all time, with sales of more than 75 million records. In 1978, he released the album Kaya, which included the hit singles “Is This Love” and “Satisfy My Soul”. The greatest hits album, Legend, was released in 1984, three years after Marley died. It subsequently became the best-selling reggae album of all time. He is considered to be the Best Reggae Artists.