Jamaican Popular Music,
from Mento to Dancehall Reggae
A Bibliographic Guide
By John Gray  

Price: $99.95

Binding: Cloth

ISBN: 978-0-9844134-1-6

455 pages

African Diaspora Press

Pub. Date: Mar. 2011


Music – Ethnomusicology

Music – Popular & Folk

Performing Arts

Area Studies – Latin American & Caribbean Studies

Ethnic Studies – Black/African Diaspora Studies

SERIES TITLE: Black Music Reference Series



Despite its global popularity, reggae, and the myriad Jamaican popular music forms which led up to its creation, has long lacked a bibliographic resource that could assist its legion of fans, students and scholars. Until now.

Based on 15 years of research Jamaican Popular Music offers nearly 3700 entries on the evolution of the island’s commercial music scene from the calypso-like mento of the late-1940s and ‘50s to the roots reggae revolution of the 1970s and the dancehall boom of the 1980s and beyond. It also provides in-depth coverage of the music’s diffusion to more than 51 countries abroad along with a biographical section documenting the careers of some 800 individual artists, producers, dancers, filmmakers, and others. Sources range from fanzine interviews and newspaper reportage to scholarly theses and journal articles published in Jamaica, Australia, Asia, Europe, Africa, and North and South America. Much of this material is cited here for the first time based on the author’s analytic indexing of some 150 arts, music, humanities and social science journals.

The result is a ground-breaking effort offering insights into all aspects of Jamaican popular music and its local, regional and transnational impact.


JOHN GRAY is director of the Black Arts Research Center in Nyack, New York. His previous publications include African Music (1991); Fire Music: A Bibliography of the New Jazz, 1959-1990 (1991); Blacks in Classical Music (1988); Blacks in Film and Television (1990); Black Theatre and Performance (1990); and, Ashe, Traditional Religion and Healing in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Diaspora (1989), all published by Greenwood Press.

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From Vodou to Zouk



Jamaican Popular Music







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