When reggae emerged within the late 1960s, it came as being a cultural bombshell not just to Jamaica however the whole world. Reggae has influenced communities through the entire world, leading to the development of new counterculture movements, specifically in Europe, in the united states and Africa. Certainly, at the end of the 1960s, it participated in the birth of the skinhead movement in the UK. Within the 1970s, it impacted on Western punk rock rock/ pop cultures and inspired the very first rappers in the USA. Finally, considering that the late 70s onwards, it has also influenced singers originating from Africa, Alpha Blondy, Tiken Jah Fakoly and Lucky Dube being perfect good examples. Therefore, my papers will examine the impact of Jamaican reggae music on the globally cultural universe, particularly on Europe, the USA and Africa.

Reggae is the musical genre which revolutionized Jamaican songs. If it surfaced in the late 1960s, it arrived as being a cultural bombshell not just to Jamaica nevertheless the whole world. Its sluggish jerky beat, its militant and spiritual words as well as the rebellious look of the singers, and others, have inspired musical styles, cultures and communities throughout the world, leading to the development of brand new counterculture movements, particularly in European countries, in the us and Africa. Indeed, at the end in the 1960s, it took part in the birth from the skinhead motion in the UK. In the 1970s, it influenced on IBRU, impacting on artists like Eric Clapton as well as the Clash. Through the same decade, it influenced the first rappers in the united states, providing increase to hip-hop tradition. Lastly, since the end of the 70s, it provides also influenced singers originating from Africa, the Ivorian performers Alpha Blondy and Tiken Jah Fakoly, and also the Southern African Lucky Dube clearly illustrating this point. Therefore, my papers will analyze the impact of reggae music in the globally cultural world, focusing especially on European countries, the united states and Africa.

“Between 1953 and 1962 approximately 175, 000 Jamaicans from town and country boarded the banana watercraft meant for London, Liverpool along with other British ports” (Chevannes 1994: 263). And despite the 1962 Commonwealth Immigrants Take action, the immigration of Jamaicans to the United kingdom, particularly Britain, remained quite significant through the 1960s. Therefore, within the late 1960s-early 70s, England had a big Jamaican neighborhood. Most of Jamaican migrants lived in working-course areas like Tottenham (Northern London) and Brixton (South Central london), the second having probably the biggest power of Jamaican immigrants in the UK. It had been essentially in that framework the Jamaican popular songs of the time, ska, rocksteady and early reggae, gained followers within the Jamaican expatriate communities through the sound system subculture1. Meanwhile, a youth counterculture movement was surfacing inside the same London working-class areas: the skinheads.

2 The phrase “dancehall” refers back to the space in which well-known Jamaican recordings were broadcast by local s (…)

3Actually, the skinhead motion developed from your modernist movement, a counterculture youth motion which originated inside london inside the late 1950s but whose maximum matches the middle-1960s. Modernists (frequently just called “mods”) had been usually from working-class backdrops. They used to reduce their hair close, each to help their fashion and stop their hair from impeding them in street fights. They used to meet each and every Weekend to go football matches and assistance their nearby groups, which regularly finished in massive battles between opposition supporters. These were challenging children for certain but paradoxically they “affected dandyism” (Moore 1993: 24). At nighttime, for instance, mods employed to dress yourself in their finest clothing and head to Dark night clubs to dance to Afro-United states songs like rhythm and blues and spirit songs that they were absolutely fond of. Additionally they often went along to dancehall2 in order to dance to new seems brought by Jamaican immigrants such as ska, rocksteady and early reggae. At these events, mods and Jamaican impolite young boys danced, laughed and drank with each other, revealing their taste for such music styles. It is really worth underlining the rude child movement erupted in the early 1960s as being a distinct force amongst the out of work young males of Kingston. Jamaican musicologist Garth White-colored claimed that these young males “became increasingly disenchanted and alienated from a system which did actually gkanik no respite from suffering. Lots of the young became rude. ‘Rude boy’ (bwoy) applied to anybody up against the system” (White-colored 1967: 40-41). Thus, mods and impolite young boys combined together giving rise towards the skinhead movement. In an interview i carried out with Roddy Moreno, leader from the Oppressed as well as an emblematic shape in the skinhead motion, the second stated:

Roddy Moreno, interview conducted by myself on 29 Sept 2008.

“As a lot of Britain maintained itself distant from the immigrants the skinheads embraced Jamaican design and music. We may attend through the night Blues parties together and lots of younger Blacks had been skinheads themselves. Recall the [Jamaican] migrants were relatively poor so the working class children had much more in common with them than with the middle and top courses of Britain. We resided on the same roads, went along to exactly the same colleges and that we partied together. Whilst a lot of Britain saw the migrants as ‘those black people,’ we skinheads saw them as ‘our black mates.’ Of course there were skinheads with racist behaviour, but many skinheads experienced dark mates and a lot skinhead gangs experienced dark children among their stands. […] Skinhead would not exist without having Jamaica”

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