Reggae & Caribbean Music

by Jul 27, 2002Reviews, Writings

Reggae & Caribbean Music


Writer: Dave Thompson
Publisher:  Backbeat Books, San Francisco U.S.A.
Published: October 2001
Book: Paperback / 350 pages
ISBN: 978-0879306557

Bob Marley

“Reggae & Caribbean Music” is more than a listener’s guide to the music made in the West Indies. It reveals the rich historical development of a regional music that is now embraced worldwide. It succeeds in exploring in depth each island’s carnival scene, the musical and cultural aspects of calypso, chutney, soca, rapso, ska/rocksteady, and other major styles of the the entire English-speaking Caribbean region — from the Bahamas to Trinidad, Jamaica to Guyana.

The extensive book is divided into four parts : 1 Carnival History & Winners, 2 Artist/Genre Profiles, 3 The Producers and part 4 Directory of Singles/10 Star Albums. The most interesting parts for the reggae adepts are parts 2 to 4 as these parts include a directory of 5000 West Indian single recordings (released in the UK between 1957-1972) with anecdotal summaries, over 500 artist and producer profiles and over 1,000 reviews. Part Three shines the light on some of Jamaia’s leading producers of the past and present, including Lloyd Barnes, Coxsone Dodd, Betram Brown, Lloyd Charmers, Gussie Clarke, Tommy Cowan, Bobby Digital, Donovan Germain, Keith Hudson, Harry Johnson, Dave kelly, King Jammy, Bunny Lee, Harry Mudie, George Phang, Winston Riley and others.

The profiles section includes such names as Bob Marley, Lord Kitchener, Lee Perry, Mighty Sparrow, Buju Banton, Prince Far I, Max Romeo, Sugar Minott, Luciano, The Maytals, Barrington Levy, I Roy, Eddy Grant, Mikey Dread, Desmond Dekker, Prince Buster, Arrow, Brother Resistance, and dozens more. Each profile comes with an extensive discography and reviews.

The author Dave Thompson has published over 70 rock music books, including a biography of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Third Ear guides Alternative Rock and Funk, and the best-selling Never Fade Away: The Kurt Cobain Story. He is currently a featured columnist in Alternative Press and Goldmine, and a regular contributor to Mojo. Thompson’s work has also appeared in Rolling Stone, Spin, Melody Maker, Record Collector, New Musical Express, Experience Hendrix, Q, and many other music magazines. He has written liner notes for numerous leading artists, and was ranked one of rock’s five foremost authors by Mojo.

We strongly recommend this work to anyone interested in the music of the West Indies.

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