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Jamaican Legends

Ernest Ranglin (JM)

Ernest Ranglin (born June 19, 1932) is a famous Jamaican guitarist.

As a child, Ranglin played ukulele, then guitar in his teen years. Charlie Christian was an early influence. Ranglin played on many classic recordings, with Jimmy Cliff, Monty Alexander, Prince Buster, The Skatalites, and others. Ranglin toured extensively with the Eric Deans Orchestra, one of the top bands in the Caribbean.

In 1958, Chris Blackwell recorded a Ranglin single; it was the first Island Records release. Later recordings in the late 1950s and early 1960s are often regarded as important in the early development of ska. In 1964, Ranglin, with Coxsone Dodd and singer Millie recorded "My Boy Lollipop", the first Jamaican song to achieve inte...

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Sly & Robbie (JM)

Sly & Robbie may well be the most prolific recording artists ever. One staggering estimate is that they have played on or produced some 200,000 songs. Sly & Robbie are reggae's longest lasting production team. The rhythm section of drummer Lowell Dunbar (nicknamed Sly after Sly Stone, one of his favorite musicians) and bass guitarist Robert Shakespeare started working together in the mid 1970s, after having established themselves separately on the Jamaican music scene.

Before joining forces, Sly was drumming for the Skin Flesh and Bones band and Robbie was the bass player for the Aggrovators. They also used to play in clubs (Sly at Tit for Tat and Robbie at Evil People), and used to check each other out. They found out that th...

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Monty Alexander (US)

Born Montgomery Bernard Alexander on June 6, 1944 in Kingston, Jamaica, Monty Alexander is a jazz pianist whose style is influenced by strong Caribbean and swing feeling. A musician of a great versatility, this piano virtuoso has covered wide range of musical genres in his career from jazz to reggae, playing with either small bands or an orchestra. "My goal is to uplift", says Alexander. “The piano, to me, is a vehicle for connecting to other human beings. I'm very open to all forms of music. I'm not a bebop musician, I'm not a calypso musician, I'm not a reggae musician. I'm a musician who loves it all". Read more on . User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.

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Bitty Mclean (UK)

Bitty McLean is a reggae music singer, producer and musician.

His career took off in 1994 with covers of The Shirelles' "Dedicated To The One I Love" and Fats Domino's "It Keeps Rainin (Tears from my eyes)".

Following the superb "On Bond street" (2004), "MOVIN' ON", his new album, produced in Kingston with Reggae legends Sly & Robbie, is scheduled for release in 2008.

McLean has also worked with the popular British reggae band, UB40, producing and mixing their "Promises and Lies" best seller and participated in "Running Free" Ali Campbell's solo album. Read more on . User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.

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Tyrone Downie (JM)