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Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Reggae Vibrations

Today in Music History: November 4

Reggae-influenced music has found its way into chart toppers by recording artists of varying genres, such as Stevie Wonder, Shakira, The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Blondie, Black-Eyed Peas, Rihanna, UB40, Simon & Garfunkel and even The Beatles just to name a few. Reggae music is one of the world's few remaining living styles of folk music. This remarkably popular form of music is heavily influenced by people's experiences, emotions and traditions being created with incredible amounts of soul and pride. 

With the background being laid, in the spotlight today is one of the first non-Jamaican singers to record reggae music in Kingston, Jamaica.
Johnny Nash in 1965
Johnny Nash - an American reggae singer-songwriter, best known in the US for his 1972 comeback hit, "I Can See Clearly Now"

Johnny Nash honed his vocal skills singing in the choir of his Baptist church. At the age of 13, he was a regular on a local television series. In 1956, he was discovered by Arthur Godfrey, appearing on his radio & TV broadcasts for the next 7 years. 

For a period of time, Nash concentrated on a career in films returning to prominence in the music industry in 1965 when the ballad "Let's Move and Groove Together" reached the R&B Top Five and more importantly became a major hit in Jamaica. After additional hits and trials that were not as successful, Nash returned to recording in Jamaica where he met Bob Marley in 1972. Marley, who wrote Nash's next hit, "Stir It Up", revived his career by peaking at number 13 on the UK chart. Johnny Nash continued to enjoy popularity with "I Can See Clearly Now", a Top 5 hit that was successfully covered by Jimmy Cliff in 1994 for the film Cool Runnings. 

1972 Johnny Nash started a three week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'I Can See Clearly Now', his only US chart topper, it made No.5 in the UK. 
More on this day, November 4, through the years... Enjoy the music of the times!

1957 Jackie Wilson made his US chart debut with 'Reet Petite', (it made No.1 in the UK in 1986, 29 years after its first release).  
1961 Cliff Richard scored his first UK No.1 album with his 5th release '21 Today'. The album was released on October 14, 1961, the exact date of Cliff Richard's 21st birthday. Side 1 of the album contained rock tunes while side 2 consisted of ballads. 
1965 The Rolling Stones were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with 'Get Off Of My Cloud', also a No.1 in the US.
1966 The Beach Boys 'Good Vibrations', entered the UK chart, it went on to be a UK & US No.1 hit single. As a child, Brian Wilson's mother told him that dogs could pick up "vibrations" from people, so that the dog would bark at "bad vibrations" Wilson turned this into the general idea for the song.
1989 Elton John scored his 50th UK chart hit when 'Sacrifice', entered the charts. Only Cliff Richard and Elvis Presley had also achieved this feat. Sacrifice was initially released as a single in 1989, but stalled at No.55 in the UK and at No.18 in the US. English DJ, Steve Wright, began playing the song on BBC Radio 1, and the song was then re-released as a double A-side single, along with 'Healing Hands'.
1989 Roxette scored their second US No.1 single with 'Listen To Your Heart', a No.6 hit in the UK the following year.  
2007 The Eagles went to No.1 on the UK album chart for the first time ever - 33 years after their debut album On the Border. This was the group's first full studio album since The Long Run in 1979. 
2013 Rihanna joined The Beatles and Elvis Presley as one of just three acts to top the UK singles chart seven times over seven years. The singer made the No.1 spot, as the featured artist on Eminem's new track 'The Monster'.

And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...