Reggae has had a fascinating history with many of its native sons experiencing worldwide recognition for their work. The first artist that comes to anyone’s mind when discussing Reggae is the legendary Bob Marley. Marley shot to stardom in the early 1970s with his groundbreaking group The Wailers. The seminal Wailers album Catch A Fire was released in 1973 with the Burnin’ album released a year later. Eric Clapton’s cover of I Shot The Sheriff brought worldwide recognition to Marley’s songwriting.
Another seminal Reggae artist was also involved with Marley’s work in the 1970s, his name was Peter Tosh. Tosh wrote many Wailers hits such as Get Up, Stand Up and due to disagreements with Island Records president Chris Blackwell, Tosh left the Wailers in 1974. Tosh’s best known hit as a solo artist was Legalize It which was the title track to his 1976 debut solo album with CBS Records.
Jimmy Cliff was another of Reggae’s luminaries who came into worldwide prominence with his turn as Ivan Martin in the hallmark 1972 film The Harder They Come. Cliff’s song Many Rivers To Cross has been covered by many artists over the years with Bruce Springsteen’s cover of Trapped being the most famous of the Jimmy Cliff catalog.
The hits keep coming: Bunny Wailer: The Elder Statesman of Reggae