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Winners of the 25th Annual Chicago Music Awards for Best Reggaeton Entertainer hosted by Martin's Inter-Cultural, Ltd. at the Museum of Science & Industry.


Introduces rap to reggae music in a style that is not only entertaining, exciting, and informative, but has a satirical sense of comedy and word art. The age of the Dub Poet has arrived, where relevant information about today's social commentary is expressed in an articulate forray to the driving beat of Reggae.

If the essence of roots conscious Reggae is the glory of Haile Selassie and the spirit of African culture, then a Reggae band from Ethiopia should draw more than a passing glance. Musical ties with Reggae's royal family and roots planted firmly in the soil of Zion itself make a good argument that the Chicago-based Baaro is one of the most unique groups in contemporary Reggae and world music.

The Gypsi Fari Band is one of the hottest reggae groups to emerge from the Chicago scene this year. Of course, the name Gypsi Fari may be a familiar one... the group originally formed in 1977 ( they were the first reggae band  in the Midwest ) and, as close friends of Bob Marley and the Wailers,

With his seven-piece band Wan-Afrika, Kwame hits the stage and lets you know that the African Roots Ambassador has arrived. He sings of the joys and sorrows of humanity, never forgetting his humility. The band has performed throughout the USA sharing the bill with notables like Third World, Mutabaruka, Pato Banton, Sonny Ade, Wailing Souls, Sonny Okusun and many others. Kwame has been the recipient of many industry awards and honorable mentions including: Martin International's Chicago Reggae Music Awards "Best Artist" and "Most Culture-Oriented Band".

Mantuila Nyomo
 The internationally re-known talents of Mantuila & The Soukous Soul Band has been recognize and appreciated by people who love to dance all over the world. They have traveled from Zaire Africa, Paris France, to Chicago United Stated of America spreading the joy and happiness that only can be reffered to as a blessing.

Jorge From Yard  
Percival Davis won the award for “Best New Artist” in the 1995 Martin’s Intercultural 15th Annual Chicago Reggae Music Award.


Much excitement attends the emergence of Ron Prince. Already known for his power and dexterity on the guitar, Ron now reveals brilliant songwriting, arranging and band leading abilities complemented by evocative vocal delivery. The scintillatingly syncopated tonal textures he achieves promise to impact the direction of 21st century music. Supported by his all-star Hard Time Band, which includes lifelong musical collaborator Joe Thomas on Bass, Ron slides deftly between rock, soul, reggae, blues, pop, jazz, and rhythm n' blues in live performance

Ron Prince & Hard Time on the Essence Of Emeril Show

Congolese band the Soukous Stars won the Best Soukous Entertainer Award at the 2003 International Reggae and World Music Awards, held in New York City on May 13, 2003.


While commercial dancehall may have been more marketable entering the 21st century, few reggae artists stayed true to the roots path as did Xcdus Records’  recording star Osezua, whose name means “Blessed.” Born in Mandeville-Manchester, Jamaica, the enlightened singer has delivered four albums that simultaneously taught and relaxed listeners. Some of his earlier works Lessons of Teachings (2000), Lord Anointed (2001),Beneficency (2003) and his 2008 release The Reckoning, has brought universal praise, as he has fast developed a fan base in the United States, Canada, Caribbean Islands, Europe and Japan.

Osezua Live- "Reggae Nights"

Narcotic Rock, Osezua, Reggae Chicago music video, official

osezua, barack obama's song. A talented singer "Osezua" dedicating this song to Barack Obama



1982, the most talented Reggae Band in Chicago


Living in the Ghetto
Born and raise in Manchester Jamaica, Tjax Malek-i aka Ferron has a dynamic stage presence and distinct vocal ability. He consistently captures his audience attention and delivers his many messages with conviction and compassion. It is truly an uplifting experience.This fresh vibrant sound of Tjax Malachi is sure to endure the test of time.
T-Jaxx Malachi & Urban Core
Reggae Band after their performance at the Haile Salassie Day Celebration in Washington Park Chicago, IL 


Cleve Hurricane Jean Jacques is a musician by profession.  He hales from the island of Dominica in the Caribbean.  Hurricane’s musical career began at the tender age of fourteen, when at the time he performed as lead guitarist and vocalist for the Island’s leading band.  Then Hurricane continued to develop in strength as a song writer, musical arranger, and entertainer.  In 1986, he entered the arena of calypso and for the next fourteen years touched  the hearts and lives of people all over the world.
The lyrical vibrations of original hit songs like Sweet Banana, Miracle, Unarmed but Dangerous, and Utility Pressure provoked minds, stirred feelings, and moved the audience to dance and sing along. 


Triple Dose Band

 Northwest Indiana is known as the stomping ground for many highly acclaimed artists and "The Triple Dose Band" keeps that list going spanning over 13 years. As a very versatile group, their performances lean towards the genre of variety music allowing them to satisfy the desires of all their listeners, playing Reggae, Motown, R&B, Funk, Jazz, Blues, and Rock.

Heavyweight Dub
Chicago’s finest Dub Reggae Band, led by drummer Ted Sirota,
If you're not familiar with Heavyweight Dub, why not?! They play every week at the Wild Hare! But for those who haven't checked them out yet, here's a review from last summer that'll give you the background to this exceptional reggae experience.

Akasha is the premiere reggae band on the Chicago musical landscape, sounding like they stepped out of a 1972 session at Studio One, but also embroidering on the Jamaican canon with diverse modern influences. Powerfully authentic but also accessible to the contemporary ear, Akasha’s approach to reggae is both a refreshing and earnest tribute.Cosmos Ray’s lead vocals, Doug Bistrow’s bass, Scott Moss’ guitar, Shane Jonas’ horns and keys, and John Barbush’s drums along with their hallmark four-part harmony come together to forge Akasha’s signature sound (read more...)


In loving memory of Aswah Greggori A 20-year veteran of the Chicago music scene, Aswah is an artist who has paid his dues and earned his place. With his Chicago-based band, the Enforcers, Aswah has emerged as a local favorite booked with international bands on tour in the Windy City including Steel Pulse, Wailing Souls, Burning Spear, Yellowman, Israel Vibration, Maxi Priest, Third World, Toots and the Maytals and Pato Banton.

Video Tracks:

Love To Love


Carl Brown

Truly Mr. Solid Gold, Carl Brown is a performer that has been fascinating audiences for some time. His signature style and presentation cannot be mistaken. This sweet-voiced vocalist has had his greatest success singing with Solid Gold International, the reggae band he formed in 1988 with friends from Jamaica. Carl knew from age 9, that his stage prowess would take him from his humble roots in Spanish Town, St. Catherine to the World's stage. Carl Brown's showmanship and vocals are unmatched, a gift that has earned him a record 17 consecutive years Best Male Vocalist at the Reggae Awards.


Carl "Solid Gold" Brown
THE ARK BAND & Carl Brown at the WILD HARE

Caribbean TV - Jamaica Carl Brown


 The Dansika Band, formerly the Western Diamonds Band, was formed in Sekondi Takoradi, the Twin City, in the Western Region of Ghana.  This group of talented musicians formed from very popular bands in Ghana; the Butterfly Six band from Tema, the Golden Nuggets from Obuasi, Ramblers International from Accra and the Osamarima  Dance Band from the twin cities, Sekondi-Takoradi, in 1991, quickly gaining recognition, and was voted the best highlife big band in Ghana at three GBC (Ghana Broadcasting Company) MUSIGA Awards during the 1990s and the Entertainment Critic Award in 1992 and 1993.

Dub Dis
What makes Dub Dis unique is their rich tapestry of creative expression that draws its inspiration from Jamaica's diverse ethnic influences. Featuring a blend of reggae, ska, calypso, mento, and soca, Dub Dis encompasses a fresh sound that is artistically entertaining. 


GULLIBANQUE continues to spread their musical talent in Chicago and around the country. Reggae fans hail GULLIBANQUE to be the hottest Reggae group in Chicago today.


The Ifficial Reggae Movement is a stand out musical group. With their explosive style and mesmerizing “riddims” it’s no wonder the band members always sport a smile on stage. Ifficial has taken the Chicago Reggae scene by storm!  They have already been rocking shows all over the Midwest for years now while creating new and original music.


Livity Nyahbinghi Choir

is a Traditional Rastafarian Spiritual Choir. Our objective is to teach the Gospel of RASTAFARI and its importance on a Universal Scale, through Music.


Raw Dawg


Guitarist, Bassist, Producer, Engineer, Songwriter, Bandleader and  Actor. Guitarist since the age of 8. Graduate of Berklee College of Music B.F.A. He is a multi-instrumentalist of over 30 instruments. A gifted composer, lyricist, and arranger of over 3000 recorded songs …International Recording Artist Mike Dangeroux (pronounced Dangerous) is a MUST SEE & HEAR! CEO of Island Entertainment.

Primal Connection
 This is a multi-ethnic Non-Profit Educational and Cultural Organization that exhibits how percussion can influence the learning of languages, mathematics, history, and geography. 

Awarded “Best Entertainer of 2003” recently by the 2004 Chicago Music Awards. Roots Rock Society, founded in December of 1986, strongly believes in keeping their heritage and culture alive with their energetic live show and innovative blend of reggae, calypso, soul, zouk and other rhythms of the African Diaspora.
Roots Rock Society Live on WGN TV

Conkrete Reggae Band Lands in Chicagooriginally started decades ago back in Kingston, Jamaica as popular JCF Band. G.D. Hemmings, the founder and drummer made Reggae his life’s work after resigning from the Jamaican Force in 1997 by reforming the band as Conkrete with local musicians in Negril.

In 2009 G.D. Hemmings migrated to the US and in 2011 he reformed his Band Conkrete Reggae with musicians from Jamaica living in the states. These are very talented and experienced musicians playing reggae music for the past 30 yrs.

Rehearsal Videos:

Lively Up Yourself Reggae Ambassador

Natty Dreadlocks

Conkrete DUB

Lover's Rock

Conkrete Interview

DUB Style

Show Videos:

Andrea at Totu's

Sky at Totu's



Surviving Chicago’s live Reggae music scene is a hard task. Few have survived the vigorous tasks of playing the Chicago club circuit night in and night out. Rasta Kelly has withstood the task.
For 15 years on the Chicago Reggae circuit and a stint in NY and Jamaica before coming to the Reggae capitol of America, Chicago, Rasta Kelly (Kelly Rankin) has stood out from the crowd. His high energy performances are known throughout the Chicago Reggae circuit.


A Man of great Music skills. A Man that has done what no Man has attempt to do before when it comes to music. People wonder how he does so many styles so well.
He has opened for many big artists, such as, Square One, Kimani Marley, Suga Minott, Tony Rebel, Twista, Teddy Riley, and The Slakers, just to name a few.

is a founding member of the acclaimed Roots, Stem, & Branches (RSB Band).  Between 1983 and 2000, RSB released 10 albums that featured reggae, soca and zouk, the native music of Dominica.  RSB toured extensively in Canada, England, the U.S. and the Caribbean and opened for such artists as Ziggy Marley, Bunny Wailer, Culture, Dennis Brown and Shinehead.  Since settling in the Windy City, Kofi has performed throughout Chicagoland and the Midwest.  In recent years, Kofi has devoted his writing talent to the genre he is most passionate about: roots reggae.  His live performances are energetic,  passionate, and uplifting.  He connects with the audience, and leaves them feelin' irie!

Rohan Prophecy Brown
Prophecy is a devoted Rastafarian who lives and worships according to the principles and teachings of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I. His utterances promote righteousness and a positive outlook towards mankind. His musical style is impacted by roots reggae, rocksteady and dub music which are embedded at the roots of Jamaica’s music culture. Truly, it is no surprise that Prophecy’s musical influences and inspirations came from music legends Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer and Burning Spear who were the trail blazers for his generation. The singer is also an activist for change with a passion for the young and the less fortunate. He started a book initiative for school children in St. Thomas and he can often be seen feeding the homeless. (read more...)



Charles was one of the most popular entertainers in Jamaica.  He then moved to the north coast and worked in the tourist industry. Charles then moved to Chicago and formed his own band called "The Charles Cameron & Sunshine Festival".

FUNKADESI is a dynamic ensemble of musicians that integrate East Indian music (Hindi film, folk, and classical) with reggae, funk, and Afro-Caribbean grooves. Funkadesi has received critical acclaim from mainstream press in Toronto, London, New York, and Chicago. The band members cultural backgrounds are as diverse as the music, including Indian-American, Jamaican, African-American, European-American, and Latino heritages. The excitement that Funkadesi has created has captured the attention of a rapidly-growing multicultural fan base, both in the greater Chicago area, and across North America.

Devon Brown

Chicago's reggae scene has been building steadily for the last two decades, even as clubs come and go and acts mature and leave. The latest and most promising artist to come on the scene actually has been a mainstay since he started performing here as a teenager in 1985.


Gizzae Reggae Band
Hailing from the beautiful Caribbean island of Dominica, the Ancient and Holy Lands of Ethiopia, and the South Side of Chicago, comes the award winning reggae music of Gizzae. Rocket, Ruphael, Clem, Evans and Ralph have over 100 years of musical experience collectively and 4 Grammy® awards playing Reggae music professionally

Jah'Nya Nas

 A crowd-pleasing favorite, Keith Eric and the Waterhouse Band are not new to the scene.  For many years, the group has attracted the interest of the young and old to partake in a great reggae show.  Singing, dancing, and enjoying the island rhythms are all part of this great performance that you won't want to miss.  On top of their personal songs, selected favorites from the links of Bob Marley and Peter Tosh could be performed.


Executive Director of Etcetera Records. Live Entertainment Performer, Recording Artist, Publisher, Producer, Songwriter, Composer and Educator Belizean born Nelson Gill, a preschool teacher for 15 years, discovered the impact of his music when he began singing songs to help some of his students settle into naptime.

Roots Vibration Reggae Band 

See Roots Vibration perform "Poor Mans Cry" June 28, 1995 at the Taste Of Chicago and  "Revelation Time"  at the Wild Hare on You Tube in some of their historic live performances in Chicago.

The original Roots Vibration is the premiere traditional award winning Reggae Band from Chicago recognized for their dedication to the upliftment of the human spirit through the communication of Roots & Culture.

Midwest Soaring 
Midwest Save Our Ancestors Remains & Resources Indigenous Network Groupis a Native-based, not-for-profit organization formed in 1994 to facilitate repatriation for the American Indian and to protect and conserve the natural environment. 


“More Jamaican Love”, says Yabba. “Life is difficult so we all have to remember that we’ve got to have fun, but don’t hurt anybody”.  
Watch the YouTube Video of Yabba Griffiths & Traxx Reggae Band performing live at the Time Out Sports Bar & Grill in Hanover Park, IL on July 8, 2002
Yabba Griffiths & Traxx performing live at The Abbey Pub in Chicago, IL on March 4, 2010

Michael Black & The Jah Guide Band 
 Michael Black started singing for people in Lucca when he was ten years old in the church choir-He’s always had the love for music. Michael says, “I was born to be a singer. God put me here to teach the world about love.â€? A few of the artist’s that has inspired Michael are Jacob Miller, Bob Marley and Ottis Redding. 


Rebel Roots
Rebel Roots is organic, raw, soulful roots-reggae with an undeniably international and positive vibration. Born and raised in the mountain village of Catadupa, Jamaica, frontman and lead vocalist Eddy Graham lends a uniquely authentic island flavor to this talented group of multicultural musicians. With members reigning from Jamaica, Poland, Ethiopia, Ghana, and Chicago, Rebel Roots cooks up a special blend of musical and cultural influences that converge to form an infectiously funky reggae experience. This Chicago based band is steadily gaining a reputation for its energetic and dynamic live shows…

The Members of Indika developed their talents on the island of Jamaica, giving them an authentic sound. They perform old Reggae favorites with new life, and add to the Reggae world with new original songs. Indika has made over ten appearances on the Jenny Jones TV show. Recently they were invited to perform at the Apollo Theatre in New York City.

Black Uhuru 
General Penitentiary 


The group formed in the Waterhouse district of Kingston in 1972, initially called simply "Uhuru" (the Swahili word for freedom), with a line-up of Garth Dennis, Don Carlos, and Derrick "Duckie" Simpson.[1] Their first release was a cover version of Curtis Mayfield's "Romancing to the Folk Song", which was followed by "Time is on Our Side"; Neither was a success and they split up, with Carlos pursuing a solo career, as did Dennis, before joining The Wailing Souls.[1] Simpson also briefly worked with the Wailing Souls, before forming a new version of Uhuru with Errol Nelson (of The Jayes) and Michael Rose, the group now taking the name Black Sounds Uhuru.[2] Their Prince Jammy-produced debut album, Love Crisis, was released in 1977.

 (Read more)


Natural Force
Natural Force - HD Live! (Tropical Addiction Series 2012)


 Formed in 1977 in Ethiopia, Dallol tried to fuse the nascent reggae scene with traditional and popular Ethiopian music. But the band members had to flee the turbulence of their home, immigrating to the United States shortly after forming to spread their unique and compelling music. They had worked with a host of reggae headliners when they joined forces with Ziggy Marley in the mid-1980s.

Kenny Rox
Kenny Rox, christened Kenneth Roxborough hails from a musical family. His father Solomon, a renown master tenorsax, is recognised as a "jack of all trades" as he is able to professionally play any musical instrument set before him. While his brother, Chelem, is not only a well sought after bass player, but he is able to hold his own on any other musical instruments.
Kenny Rox's solo career actually started back in 1967, when he released "Glory Of Love", but things didn't happen the way he wanted, with the sinlgle not doing too well, so he took a break for a while.
In 1975, he came back on the music scene as lead vocal for the group "The Emotional". He stuck with them for about five years and together they released three singles in England "River Stream", "That's How I Feel", and "Frustration". He had as much better luck this time, as the three sogns did great on the English charts.
Later he joined the Wadadah group, of which he is still a member. But now he wants to make a come-back as a solo artiste and he is willing to accept any help that will enhance the prospects of him becoming a top Reggae singer and song writer, and is at the verge of launching his single "No Opportunity".
He is also at the present time a back-up vocalist for Stephen Marley.
Look out world, 'cause this time Kenny Rox is here to stay with his new release

 Ska Reggae

Ska ( /ˈskɑː/, Jamaican[skja]) is a music genre that originated in Jamaica in the late 1950s, and was the precursor to rocksteady and reggae.Ska combined elements of Caribbeanmento and calypso with Americanjazz and rhythm and blues. It is characterized by a walking bass line accented with rhythms on the upbeat. In the early 1960s, ska was the dominant music genre of Jamaica and was popular with Britishmods. Later it became popular with many skinheads


Roots Reggae

Roots reggae is a subgenre of reggae that deals with the everyday lives and aspirations of the artists concerned, including the spiritual side of Rastafari and with the honoring of God, called Jah by rastafarians. It also is identified with the life of the ghetto sufferer, and the rural poor. Lyrical themes include spirituality and religion, poverty, Black pride, social issues, resistance to government and racial oppression, and repatriation to Africa


Dancehall Reggae

Dancehall is a genre of Jamaicanpopular music that originated in the late 1970s. Initially dancehall was a more sparse version of reggae than the roots style, which had dominated much of the 1970s. In the mid-1980s, digital instrumentation became more prevalent, changing the sound considerably, with digital dancehall (or "ragga") becoming increasingly characterized by faster rhythms. In the mid-1990s with the rise of dancehall BoboShanti artists, such as Sizzla and Capleton, developed a very strong connection between dancehall and Rastafari.

Dancehall music has come under criticism from international organizations and individuals for its violent and sometimes homophobic lyrics, although the lyrical themes are more varied than simply dealing with slackness and violence. (Read more)



Chicago Reggae Artist Now Departed


C.W. Kush


Hopeton Prince

Oscar Bo Brown III 

Kevin Giles 

Meshek Silas


Junior Braithwaite

Wayne "Zayah" Crutcher 

Ozzie "Aswah"Greggori


Blacka Smith

 Ozziel Ben Levi



 100 Greatest Reggae Artists


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