- MANY MANY YEARS AGO IT WAS QUEEN VICTORIA WHO UNDER HER LEADERSHIP SLAVERY WAS ABOLISHED.
- NOW IN OUR TIME IT IS HER ROYAL MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH 11 WHO UNDER HER LEADERSHIP REGGAE MUSIC WAS GIVEN THE OFFICE.
- LONG LIVE THE QUEEN.
- Those who know anything about the history of reggae, will tell you plainly that there were doubters in the very country where reggae music was created in the first place, but that did not deter the movement of the music.
- It was the sweat and toil of the many peoples that invested their hard earned into the music that kept it alive.
- Men like Vere Johns - Bim & Bam Ken khouri - Coxone Dodd - Baba Motto - Eddie Seaga - Chris Blackwell - Sagwa Bennett - Leslie 'Beverly's' Kong - Duke Reid - Hilite's Little Wonder Smithy, who made that massive Jamaican hit Worried Over You, by Keith & Enid - King Edwards - Prince Buster - L. O. Pottinger and the so many others, the list would be too long to name all. Readers please take note that the above list does not include the names of the new generation set of music makers and creators that became known as producers.The first generation set were known in those days as promoters. (The film The Harder They Come) will bear witness of this fact. One of the reasons they were so called, was due to the fact that those people were always putting on shows and dances all over the country and sometimes overseas as well. In other words very much unlike some now-a-days investors, who waltz into the music business, thinking that investment ceases inside the recording studios.
- Then there is the long list of sound system operators who kept the music alive in the dance-halls (hence the name dance-hall-music) not to be confused with the derogatory, what some would claim to call music these days, which has helped to put reggae music in the slow lane.
- I must give mention to radio disc jockeys like C B Charlie Bobcock, the imported 'live wire' which came out of Canada to give reggae music the boost and recognition it had long waited for. He was popularly known as 'the 'Cool Fool' with the live jive'. If ever a disc jockey was loved by an audience - he was. This was the very first time in the history of reggae music, a white man had ever presented reggae in the way which he did, in Jamaica. Many Jamaicans of a certain age group will remember, and affirm that this man became so popular, that folks used to bring gifts to 32 Lyndhurst Road to give this man, as a token of their appreciation, for playing good music on the air. At any one time it could be chickens, pigs, goats - you name it.
- Why have I taken the time to point out all those happenings? it is for the simple reason that if the music being played is what the masses want to hear, they will never depart from it, or the persons presenting.
- In England where reggae was given an international platform to perform the reggae in those days, there were disc jockeys like the great John Peel, men like Roscoe, and a few others, and they did not bore people with what they played - they magnified the music.
- While at the same time Jamaica's own home-grown D J Radcliffe Butler flew the flag for American soul music, sometimes giving reggae a little squeak on his radio show.
- All that happened on the station called RJR, Jamaica had not long come out of Redifusion, at that time it was mainly English and or British broadcasters.
- The access to radio in those days was one channel only, and it played for 24/7 daily. One could see them hanging up in treetops all over the city, and no self respecting factory, would be without one.
- So why have I elaborated on the above information? well quite simple, it is to bring home the fact, and realisation that music need exposure, and having so many radio stations giving so little opportunity to especially the young up and coming makers of music, will not only keep reggae in the slow lane, but will continue to give a bias plate of music to all and sundry, and then we sit and wonder why society is broken down.
- There is more than enough space for good music to be aired, and a little bit less of the manufactured artiste, being foisted on the buying public, who for the want of something to buy, will buy what they hear, and is available.
Copy right 2013
R L Edwards
To be continued as part of the memoirs of Rupie Edwards.
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