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By TOM PRYOR

World Music Legends Ray Barretto
Few musicians can boast a career as varied, lengthy and influential as Ray Barretto.
By Tom Pryor

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World Music Legends Burning Spear
After Bob Marley, Burning Spear has done more than anyone to keep both authentic roots reggae and Marcus Garvey’s teachings alive in the 21st century. At 56, Winston Rodney shows no signs of slowing down.
By Tom Pryor

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World Music Legends Astor Piazzolla
Few artists are as intimately associated with Argentine tango as Astor Piazzolla. He did more than anyone to keep the tango alive and evolving as an artform in the later half of the twentieth century.
By Tom Pryor

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World Music Legends Fela Kuti
The late, great Nigerian bandleader Fela Kuti was one of the most dynamic, original and uncompromising musicians to emerge from the great post-colonial African pop explosion in the 1960s and ’70s.
By Tom Pryor

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Burning Spear

Reggae Legends Burning Spear
The early albums by Winston Rodney, aka Burning Spear, are masterpieces of roots 'n' Rasta that practically define “dread.”
By Tom Pryor

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Capleton

Reggae Legends Capleton
Capleton had an early gift for (sometimes lewd) wordplay. Then Capleton got religion, Rastafarianism to be specific, and the tone and tenor of his music began to change.
By Tom Pryor

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Gregory Isaacs

Reggae Legends Gregory Isaacs
Gregory Isaacs is one of reggae’s all-time greatest singers, a master of subtle phrasing and sly innuendo who’s voiced some of the music’s best-known hits.
By Tom Pryor

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King Tubby

Reggae Legends King Tubby
King Tubby was the studio genius and sound innovator who invented dub reggae. He was responsible for some of the genre’s greatest recordings and changed the way people listened to music.
By Tom Pryor

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Lucky Dube

Reggae Legends Lucky Dube
While most reggae artists were bemoaning South Africa’s Apartheid government throughout the 1980s, Lucky Dube was living the struggle firsthand.
By Tom Pryor

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Mikey Dread

Reggae Legends Mikey Dread
Mikey Dread is perhaps best known today for his career as a singer and producer, the versatile Dread has had an equally lasting impact as a broadcaster.
By Tom Pryor

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U Roy

Reggae Legends U Roy
U-Roy perfected the art of the Jamaican DJ, turning the between-song patter of his sound system predecessors into the main event itself.
By Tom Pryor

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Yellowman

Reggae Legends Yellowman
Winston Foster, a.k.a. Yellowman, overcame significant obstacles to dominate the dancehall like no other DJ in the early 1980s.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Fela Kuti
The founder and king of Afro-beat, Fela’s legend continues to grow long after his death from AIDS-related complications in 1997.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Brenda Fassie
Dubbed “The Madonna of the Townships” by Time Magazine, South African singer Brenda Fassie was one of the most beloved, controversial and ultimately tragic figures of contemporary South Africa.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Bi Kidude
Zanzibar’s legendary Bi Kidude is one of a kind: a 90-something performer, storyteller and musical repository who’s also a living link back to the roots of contemporary Swahili pop music and the great taarab singer Siti Binti Saad.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Dolly Rathebe
Dolly Rathebe was one of the most influential singers in South Africa’s booming jazz scene of the ’40s and ’50s, singing in the hip clubs of Joburg’s mixed Sophiatown neighborhood.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Culture Musical Club
East Africa’s distinctive taarab music is unique to the Swahili coast. But the music and culture’s true homeland is the island of Zanzibar, and taraab’s best-known practitioners are the elegant and accomplished members of the great Culture Musical Club.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Ismael Lô
Ismael Lô is one of Senegal’s great voices, a powerful and versatile performer who came of age alongside Youssou N’Dour and others during the m'balax explosion of the late ’70s and early ’80s.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Mabulu
The Mozambican band Mabulu unites up-and-coming young rappers and singers with master musicians from the golden age of marrabenta, Mozambique’s classic pop sound of the ’60s and ’70s.
By Tom Pryor

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African Legends Thione Seck
Thione Ballago Seck descends from a famous line of griots, the traditional praise singers of the Wolof people of Senegal. Simply put, he has one of the most beautiful voices in all of Africa.
By Tom Pryor

[ read more ]

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