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Stories by Roy Black

Published:Sunday | August 16, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

One of the features of 1960s Jamaica was the infiltration of foreign vocal groups into the musical culture of the island. Alongside popular local stars of the era like Jimmy Cliff, Eric 'Monty' Morris, Derrick Morgan, Stranger Cole, Delroy Wilson...

Published:Sunday | August 9, 2015 | 12:40 AMRoy Black

BY LATE 1965, the ska beat, which had dominated Jamaican popular music since late 1961, and which was highlighted in last week’s article, was giving way to a smoother, slower, and more rhythmic form of music, which by year-end 1966, would...

Published:Sunday | August 2, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

The Jamaican music of 1962 mirrored the mood of a people who had transitioned from colonial rule to independence. Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Derrick Morgan, Toots Hibbert, Delroy Wilson and Stranger Cole are just a few of the artistes whose songs...

Published:Sunday | July 26, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

A top 10 is the cream of the crop in any collection of things. Music lends itself naturally to top-10 rankings, with the record charts being the most widely used measurement.However, by their very nature, weekly records charts are ephemeral as they...

Published:Wednesday | July 15, 2015 | 11:01 PMRoy Black

The annual Tribute to the Greats awards show and dance will have its 18th staging on Saturday, August 1, at the Chinese Benevolent Association (CBA), 176 Old Hope Road, St Andrew, beginning at 8 p,m. With the focus this year being on the British-...

Published:Tuesday | July 7, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Harry J. Recording Studios, which became the happy hunting ground for several early successful Jamaican singers and musicians, including Bob Marley and the Wailers, Toots and the Maytals, Bob and Marcia, Burning Spear, and The Heptones, is again...

Published:Sunday | June 28, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Six years have flown by since the legendary King of Pop, Michael Jackson, passed away on June 25, 2009. In a dazzling 40-year career, he took dancing to a new level with some self-created dance moves, many of which defied even the laws of gravity....

Published:Sunday | June 14, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

To many Jamaican music enthusiasts, the name Johnny Moore conjures up memories of that late Jamaican trumpeter who helped the Skatalites band to become, arguably, the greatest and most talented aggregation of musicians ever to be assembled on the...

Published:Saturday | June 13, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Vinyl records have again been pushed into the spotlight with the recent announcement by Mrs Patricia Chin, director and co-founder of VP Records, that she intends to resume the production of the much sought-after commodity.The very ardent record...

Published:Sunday | May 31, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Legendary Jamaican ska singer, songwriter, record producer, and sound system operator of the 1960s, Prince Buster, celebrated a birthday last week. The milestone revives memories of some of the most intriguing and dramatic episodes concerning Buster...

Published:Saturday | May 30, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

At the crack of dawn on Labour Day earlier this week, thousands of Jamaicans embarked on their various chores, totally oblivious of the fact that one of the most iconic musical figures - Desmond Dekker, who laboured incessantly to develop and...

Published:Sunday | May 24, 2015 | 12:47 AMRoy Black

Wilfred ‘Jackie’ Edwards was one of the early Jamaican recording artistes who utilised Latin rhythms to great effect in their recordings. Some say Edwards was Jamaica’s first superstar, having placed four number one singles on the...

Published:Wednesday | May 20, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Another Blues giant has passed on. This time it's B.B. King. He made the transition last Thursday, four months short of his 90th birthday.King was third in a line of three luminaries who passed away in quick succession, the others being Percy Sledge...

Published:Friday | May 15, 2015 | 10:32 AMRoy Black

Just before the euphoric rise of the thunderous Jamaican ska beat, there existed a stream of Jamaican recordings that drew heavily from Latin rhythms. Labelled by some scholars as Jamaican ballads, they emerged just at the turn of the 1960s and...

Published:Saturday | May 9, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

The name Ben E. King became a household one in Jamaica during the 1960s. His love for the island, evidenced by the many trips he made here, and the love the people had for him and his songs, gained for him that status. In a 2005 interview, King was...

Published:Wednesday | April 29, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

As Jamaican dub and roots reggae makes a heavy resurgence and mark on the music scene, Bunny 'Striker' Lee, pioneer of ska, rocksteady, reggae, dub, dancehall, and record producer in his own right, is promoting his book and documentary.They explain...

Published:Thursday | April 23, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

His legacy lives on'When a man loves a woman,can't keep his mind on nothin' else.He'd trade the world for the good thing he's found.If she's bad he can't see it, she can do no wrong.And turn his back on his best friend if he puts her down.When a man...

Published:Wednesday | April 8, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Much has been written and said about the late Byron Lee, concerning his contribution to soca music and the establishment of carnival in Jamaica. But there is much more to the man than just soca and carnival. Lee was an outstanding footballer for St...

Published:Sunday | March 22, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

The 1982 introduction of the compact disc (CD), a digital music playback format that used a laser to record the disc, threatened to eclipse the use of the vinyl record format that was then in use. The demise of the vinyl record seemed real, as CD...

Published:Sunday | March 22, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

To most of Nat King Cole's fans, he was considered the warm-voiced singer of ballads, love songs and happy songs that sent an aura of romanticism to all who came into contact with his music. But on the contrary, following his adopted path as a jazz...

Published:Wednesday | February 18, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

The YAHBA album, Jus' Wicked, is a bubbling 'Yabba pot' of musical selections, featuring a galaxy of stars that were popular during the 1960s and 1970s.If ever there was a collection of songs that linked the present and the future with the past, and...

Published:Sunday | February 15, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Greenwich Farm yields musical stalwartsDuring the 1970s, the music coming out of Kingston 13 was the backbone of the Jamaica music industry. The Soul Syndicate Band, which played on over 60 per cent of all recordings done during that era, was an...

Published:Sunday | February 1, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

It was on a bright fate-deciding Monday evening in late 1963, that five youngsters - Robert Nester Marley, Neville Livingstone, Winston M

Published:Sunday | January 25, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

The high point of male vocalising in popular music was epitomised by the mellow-toned, crystalline vocal delivery of Sam Cooke.

Published:Saturday | January 17, 2015 | 12:00 AMRoy Black

Singers Sam Cooke and Lou Rawls may seem far apart in their styles, but they had a lot of things in common.

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