Is Jamaica really the  Reggae Capital of the World?

Is Jamaica really the  Reggae Capital of the World?

This article found on Orijinculture.com hits hard as it conveys harsh truths speaking to the perception that Jamaica has been dethroned as the Reggae Capital of the World.

Who makes claim to being the Reggae Capital of the World?

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While Jamaica is known as the birthplace of reggae music, it no longer holds the title as reggae capital of the world. With reggae music legends such as Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Jimmy Cliff taking reggae music and it message of love, peace and positive vibrations to the world stage, reggae music has become the music of choice for many countries outside Jamaica. Reggae/culture music, which should not be confused for dancehall music, has been and continues to be used as a tool for activism and resistance. Void of its political implications and purpose, reggae music just gives that feel good positive vibe and enables it’s listeners to appreciate its messages of love and togetherness.

In the 1970’s, outside of Jamaica, Europe particularly Britain, was one of the largest consumers and distributors of reggae music. Today, another European country, France, has been leading the way in reggae music production and distribution. As noted by reggae music producer/ engineer Sam Clayton, who also happens to be the son of Rastafari elder Sam Clayton Sr., “I know France is the biggest reggae country outside of Jamaica. Yes, it’s a bigger market than the US; it’s a bigger market than England.” In recent years, France has been plagued by various uprising, predominantly led by discontented immigrant youths, who find it difficult to strive in what many of them see as a xenophobic society. This discontent could be a contributing factor to the surge of reggae music in France. Reggae music is used as a means of activitism and its positive message also serves as a voice of hope. Reggae music in France is not only popular because of the importation for reggae artists and music but there is also a strong and market and production of home-grown reggae music.

Another country that is making claim to being the reggae capital of the world is the West African nation of Côte d’Ivoire. Recently, CEO of Jamaica Arts Development Foundation Inc, Lloyd Stanbury, declared that Abidjan — the former capital of Côte d’Ivoire — is now the reggae capital of the world. He explained that “The love and respect for reggae music and Jamaica remain strong. This was evident from my experiences during the many days I spent in Ouagadougou, Dakar and Abidjan. Abidjan is actually considered to be one of the reggae capitals of the world. While I was there I was able to witness the stirring live presentations of home-grown reggae bands.” Côte d’Ivoire is not the only African country claiming reggae music as one of their main forms of music genres. Other West African countries including Senegal, Burkina Faso and Ghana are also among the largest consumers, distributors and producers of reggae music.

The writer does put forward some valid points and we can clearly see the shift and influences that are evident in the music being packaged today but can we say that it is still Reggae Music? Or do we accept the changing tides and say we WERE the Reggae capital of the World.

Does the work present crop of artist erode the great footprintss that have cemented us on the world stage and does a legacy die if its’ offspring ceases to emulate and carry on his works….Is Jamaica still the Reggae Capital of the World?

Here’s how local pundits view Jamaica’s position musically jamaica-gleaner.com/…er/20120715/ent/ent8

Food for thought. Thanks to Orijinculture.com/community/ for sharing your views on our likkle island wid di big music.

Remember to check us out on fetedayziradio.com for more of the best kinds of music on Planet Earth.

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