Reggae Music - Culture - Social change - Communication
1960 commonly referred to as the sixties refers to the time denoting the complex interrelated cultural and political trends across the globe. It is referred to as the actual decade when decolonization took place in most parts of the world. In Africa, 32 countries gained independence from the colonialists during the sixties. The black power movement also prospered in this era and the global political and social upheaval flourished towards the late 1960's. At each phase of revolution, music matched the biographies of those who made it and responded to it. Therefore, music epitomized a relevant form of communication and prediction expected to pass (Borstelmann., 2001). This is not to mean that only reggae music contributed towards freedom but the teachings of the Rastafarian culture were communicated in form of reggae music.
Reggae music blew up as a bang during this period to the resistance movements against imperialism. Reggae music began in Kingston Jamaica and conquered the world by acquiring an emblematic Rastafarian character. Reggae musicians tried to create a form of connection between the historic activities of decolonizing Africa and Jamaica, the black power movement in America, and the political and social upheaval towards the end of 1960. This is evidenced through historic writings and movies such as Rockers, which tried to explain the history and purpose of reggae music. The movie shows the development of reggae music from the film's small and self-contained world. The music was dedicated to the whites indirectly. In one-movie scenes, the late Jacob Miller is seen with his band playing music for white tourist who did not have the slightest idea of what was going on.
[...] Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. Hosseini., K. (2009). One Thousand Splendid Suns. S.l.: Penguin Group US. Sidhwa, B. (1991). Cracking India. Minneapolis, Minn.: Milkweed Editions. Robin, A. (Producer), Steinberg, S. (Writer), & Bafaloukos, T. [...]
[...] (Director). (1978). Rockers [Motion Picture]. New Yorker Films. [...]
[...] Reggae music incorporated the ideologies of unity and social change. It passed out the message that social change be adopted for the interests of all members of the black community. Reggae passed out the theme that one could still enjoy life even in cases of tragedies since there was hope for improvement (Sidhwa, 1991). In the Jamaican society, music is an important aspect of their way of life and reggae music was adopted as a means of expressing discontent in the Jamaican society. [...]
[...] Reggae music as a basis of social change The reggae musicians were great advocates of social change. With their Rastafarian culture, they demanded and advocated for social change in society. During the colonial days, the colonialists subjected citizens to disparaging conditions of poverty, servitude, and oppression. In Jamaica, the case was similar and reggae musicians came out in large numbers to criticize the oppression. The Rastafarian culture advocated for equal distribution of wealth and resources in the country. The musicians considered the rich to be in control in the wealth but were not spreading it (Borstelmann., 2001). [...]
[...] The culture of reggae music changed with time but the themes remained. Newer artists like Luciano, Capleton, and Buju Banton carried on the message of social change. They believe that once the message is conveyed, everyone will head to the message. The early reggae artists were set to open their eyes by the goals of the Rastafarians. By using their music, Rastafarians were able to portray the sufferings of the people of Jamaica and hoped that during the stop of the suffering there would be a showdown. [...]
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