Reggae Reel is a blog dedicated to sharing some of the best reggae moments in music history. From classic tracks to new releases, we’ve got it covered.
“Reggae Reel: Moments in Music” is a documentary that explores the history and influence of reggae music. The film features interviews with reggae artists and historians, as well as performance footage of some of the genre’s most iconic songs.
What is Reggae?
Reggae is a music genre that originated in Jamaica in the late 1960s. The term also denotes the modern popular music of Jamaica and its diaspora. A 1968 single by Toots and the Maytals, “Do the Reggay” was the first popular song to use the word “reggae”, effectively naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience. While sometimes used in a broad sense to refer to most types of popular Jamaican dance music, the term reggae more properly denotes a particular music style that originated following on the development of ska and rocksteady.
The History of Reggae
Reggae is a music genre that originated in Jamaica in the late 1960s. The term also denotes the modern popular music of Jamaica and its diaspora. A 1968 single by Toots and the Maytals, “Do the Reggay” was the first popular song to use the word “reggae”, effectively naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience. While sometimes used in a broad sense to refer to most types of popular Jamaican dance music, the term reggae more properly denotes a particular music style that originated following on the development of ska and rocksteady. Reggae is based on a rhythmic style characterized by regular beats on the off-beat, sometimes referred to as the skank.
Reggae developed from mento and calypso influences, both developed in Jamaica by African slaves brought by English colonizers in the 17th century. Reggae fused elements of Afro-Caribbean mento and calypso with American jazz and rhythm and blues. Because of this, reggae music has been described as ” throbbing, hypnotic, mood-changing sound that anchored an entire generation”.
Reggae typically relates news, social gossip, and political commentaries. Because it is song-based rather than instrumental-based, lyrics are considered very important in reggae music; they are often reflective of important social issues facing Jamaica at any given time. Reggae has been strongly influenced by African American culture; especially rhythm and blues which played an important role in its formative years through radio station broadcasts from Miami and New Orleans heard throughout Jamaica.
The Influence of Reggae
Reggae music has been a huge influence on many different genres of music, including rock, hip hop, and pop. While the artists that created this uniquely Jamaican sound may not be as well-known as some of their more mainstream counterparts, their contributions to music are undeniable.
Reggae’s distinctively syncopated rhythmic style was first developed in the late 1960s. This unique approach to rhythm and timing soon found its way into other genres of music, most notably rock and roll. Reggae artists like Bob Marley and Peter Tosh helped to introduce this new sound to a wider audience, and it soon became hugely popular all over the world.
One of the most distinctive aspects of reggae is its use of studio effects, such as reverb and delay. This “reggae sound” was quickly adopted by other genres of music, including dub and dancehall. Reggae’s influence can also be heard in more recent styles like drum and bass and jungle.
While it may not be as commercially successful as it once was, reggae’s impact on popular music is still very evident. The next time you hear a song with a syncopated rhythm or heavy use of studio effects, there’s a good chance that it has been influenced by reggae in some way.
The Future of Reggae
The future of reggae music is looking bright. With the rise in popularity of conscious hip-hop and trap music, artists are beginning to experiment with incorporating reggae elements into their songs. This has resulted in a new subgenre of music known as Afro-trap, which combines the sounds of trap music with traditional African percussion and melodies.
Reggae music has become one of the most popular genres in the world, and its influence can be heard in everything from pop to hip-hop. While the sound of reggae has evolved over the years, the spirit of the music remains the same: to make people feel good and to promote peace, love, and unity.