The Story of Reggae – Roots
Written by Carifun Radio by Dj Paparazzi on January 27, 2019
Roots Reggae truly put Jamaican music on the map as a bona fide protest movement. Rastas were so despised within polite Jamaican society that at one point the police were under orders to shoot them first and question them after. The most famous Jamaican in the country’s history is Bob Marley, Rastaman and figurehead of the roots movement. Roots music is big, It’s loved by all types of people across the globe.
Ten years on from Independence, and Jamaica’s people began to notice
Large numbers embraced Rastafari as being not only a manifestation of what they wanted from the government – a forcefully honest doctrine of peace, love and anti-corruption – but presenting an alternative way of living within the grinding poverty that had become common place. They exposed the teaching of Marcus Garvey (self-help and repatriation) to provide hope. As many musicians locked up, Rasta’s influence over the sounds became obvious: much of Reggae’s inherent sunniness seemed to cloud over: the bass got deeper and more pronounced; the tempo slowed down portentously; and lyrics frequently spat fire and brimstone. It was dread!
It was also the period that saw Reggae being taken seriously by rock fans around the world as a music that had something to say - punks in Britian adopted Roots Reggae as a big part of their soundtrack, identifying closely with its sense of alienation. During the roots era, artists like Burning Spear, Culture, The Congoes, Big Youth, The Mighty Diamonds, Dillinger, Tapper Zukie, Lee Perry, The Ethiopians and Max Romeo