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Reggae Grammy is a Joke

Reggae Grammy is a Joke

Reggae Grammy is a Joke

By on - 9 comments

Joke of the year was presented last week when the nominees for best reggae album were made official.

The reggae category was introduced in 1984 and the first winner was Anthem from Black Uhuru. Since then, several siblings in the Marley family have been awarded. Stephen Marley two times for his mediocre Mind Control (2009, 2007) and Damian Marley for his Welcome to Jamrock (2005) and Halfway Tree (2001). Ziggy Marley has also been awarded several times, most recently with Love is My Religion released in 2006.

That’s why I thought Distant Relatives from Nas & Damian Marley was a given nominee. But no.

Instead, this year’s list consists of six albums by a strange bunch, namely Lee Perry, Sly & Robbie (with two albums), Andrew Tosh, the late Gregory Isaacs and the imprisoned Buju Banton.

Reggae Grammy Awards 2010

Weirdest on the list is Lee Perry and his Revelation set. This is a very poor album and I guess the jury just wants to give him some kind of lifetime achievement award.

I understand if the jury doesn’t find and appreciate gems such as Judgement Time by Chezidek or United States of Africa by Luciano. But, it missed out on decent albums from very well-known artists such as Busy Signal and Gyptian.

With Hold You, Gyptian scored one of the biggest reggae hits in recent years, and it’s a mystery why his album wasn’t nominated.

And if the jury wants to premier nostalgia and veterans, they should’ve nominated Clinton Fearon or Earl Zero.

The only great album that has won the Reggae Grammy is Jah is Real (2008) from Burning Spear. The jury needs to scrutinize themselves and come up with some real nominees for next year. Now the reggae world is just laughing at them.

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Read comments (9)

Posted by sue on 12.08.2010
AGREED: THE REGGAE GRAMMY IS A SAD JOKE. the arrogance of those outside of the thing to appear to appropriate wat is excellent. those that have won don't represent the best, check the record of this award. IT IS A TRAVESTY. but Reggae fights Babylon so we shouldn't expect Babylon could possibly 'get' it. i'm a Reggae fan that let go of this 'award' as important years ago. ain't nobody checkin' for this. thanks for your article. (i'm going to read it now - i had to commend you for the accuracy of your headline and for making a space) love

Posted by jah thomas on 12.08.2010
Complete joke, although Jamrock and Mind Control were top albums imo, but the Grammys in general are a waste of time.

Posted by Rob Kenner on 12.09.2010
The nominees are not chosen by a jury but by all the members of the Recording Academy. Since very few of these people are reggae listeners, the most familiar names do tend to get nominated year after year. Here's a look back in time at some past winners of the Reggae Grammy: In my opinion The Soul Train Awards was more successful recognizing the best reggae acts this year. Check their nominees here:

Posted by Andy B on 12.11.2010
Author is so correct in mentioning both Clinton Fearon and Earl Zero. Both are true gems.

Posted by I-Rick on 12.11.2010
Beside the nominees beeing chosen by the members of the Academy, a album to feature there as to be proposed by the artist/label before, to enter a 30 (I believe...) albums list...Always hard to find that list, so we never really know what were the first choices...
Still it´s the same every year...So many veterans awaiting long time recognization released good albums this year: Horace Andy, Pablo Moses, Apple Gabriel, Clinton Fearon, Earl Zero, Winston Jarret, Anthony Johnson, Don Carlos...we would expect at least one to be there! But everyone knows it´s not really a 'reggae music' award, it´s common sense this days, so no point in debating it for to long :)
Anyway, from what's there... Andrew Tosh Legacy album would be my choice.

Posted by @Rowan506Levy on 12.11.2010
The Grammy award can be a hit or miss at times. This years it's a miss. It's hard to believe that of the recordings that were submitted to NARAS these entries were the final nominees. The Reggae industry needs members to join NARAS, this would make a big difference.

Posted by Iiyambo Gabriel on 12.13.2010
Agreed 100%. I'm from Africa (Namibia) and to me this is a very sad joke. They supose to nominate the new generation of reggae artists, the likes of Gyptian, Busy Signal, Damian Marley. In fact how can they nominate them if they do not know them. Gyptian released a hit this I was expecting him to be nominated. Peace!

Posted by maddis on 12.30.2010
The Stephen Marley Album was very gooood, definitly one of the best Reggae-LPs in the last years i listened too (and I listened to many many LPs)....Still strange why it won twice and Still Reggae Grammy is bulllshit...

Posted by Jah Jah in T.O. on 02.13.2011
Seldom does a chosen few, in this case the "select" members of the Recording Academy, represent the opinions of the masses. One must question the broader awareness of the membership about Reggae and what it has to offer. For the most part they can only relate to the mainstream stuff. Take it for what it is, a bunch of very rich people getting together for a night of who is the best dressed and who is the most outlandish.

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