REGGAE MUSIC IS REVOLUTIONARY
Since time immemorial, there have been complaints that people go into reggae because it is an avenue for one to champion his cause, but the truth is that reggae musicians have not been up in their game in Nigeria. Anthony Ada Abraham sought the views of some people about the fast decline.
Reggae is a music genre first developed in Jamaica in the late 1960s. While sometimes used in a broader sense to refer to most types of Jamaican music, the term reggae, more properly denotes a particular music style that originated following on the development of ska and rocksteady.
Reggae is most easily recognized by the rhythmic accents on the off-beat, usually played by guitar or piano (or both), known as the skank. This pattern accents the second and fourth beat in each bar (or the 'and's of each beat depending on how the music is counted) and combines with the drums emphasis on beat to create a unique feel and sense of phrasing in contrast to most other popular genres focus on beat one, the 'downbeat'.
The tempo of reggae is usually felt as slower than the popular Jamaican forms, ska and rocksteady, which preceded it.
It is this slower tempo, the guitar/piano offbeats, the emphasis on the third beat, and the use of syncopated, melodic bass lines that differentiates reggae from other music, although other musical styles have incorporated some of these innovations separately.
But lately, many have seen that genre of music fading out while others believe it is not.
According to Sunday Bawa, an artiste, reggae music has a way of making you listen to it but is fast fading out.
'Its suppose to be inspirational down to the instrumentals but what I have heard thus far in Nigeria, is a routine of repetition in melody and lyrism so it turns off a listening ear. Don't think it still thrives even.'
But Eddy Madaki of iBLEND, says the genre of music will never fade even though we have artistes in Nigeria taking charge of dance hall which is also a segment of reggae.
'Reggae is a genre that is timeless. That's why you can groove to Bob Marley, Lucky Dube, Don Carlos and elephant man at the same event. It appeals to all ages. So, I hardly doubt it needs any form of modernization if you ask me. Yes! Shank, Burna boy, General Pype, even Jesse Jags, can compete with the best dancehall acts in the world.'
But XZ doubts the love for reggae music, stating that Nigerian artistes are becoming preferable even though people find it difficult to let it go. 'Reggae music is good, to an extent, yeah, people like Rhymzo, Tuface who sings like them. But we can also call them modern reggae artiste, my views.'
As it goes, music is revolutionary, depending on the continents. In Africa (Nigeria, South Africa) reggae music was used to fight injustice like apartheid. People like Bob Marley, Lucky Dube, Oritz Wiliki, the Mandators and others sang songs revolutionising the souls of their people (the oppressed), passing across messages that has to do with injustice, love, peace, equality and soul survival.
The message in reggae is no doubt strong and evergreen little wonder people like Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Lucky Dube, Don Carlos and others songs could be listened to anytime anywhere.