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What is reggae?

Le 11/09/2019

It’s a style of music invented on the island of Jamaica in the Caribbean at the time when your grandparents were teenagers.

You can easily recognize a reggae song thanks to the drums and bass that make you want to get up and dance!

The Jamaican Bob Marley made reggae famous all over the world with songs like Get up, Stand up.

In his songs, he often denounces the racism and slavery his people were subject to for centuries.

Because reggae is rebel music: the word comes from the Jamaican rege-rege, which means quarrel.

Close to America, Jamaica was a stopover point for ships transporting slaves from Africa.

That is why reggae has its roots in black music, African percussion…

… but also in the jazz and rhythm and blues of African-Americans.

Reggae is also a life philosophy, Rastafarianism, which celebrates peace and solidarity between humans.

In their songs, Rastafarians, reggae musicians, often talk about their dream of going back to Africa one day.

They have a very special look: they wear long hair, with dreadlocks…

… They wear red, green and yellow, the 3 colors of the Ethiopian flag, one of the African countries that resisted slavery.

Resist, love and dance: the story of reggae in 3 words!