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Top 10, Most Influential Jamaican Artistes
In My Opinion

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Bob Marley Jamaican ArtisteBob Marley | Top Jamaican Artistes

Reggae and dancehall are universal. There is hardly anywhere you can go without hearing the cool, easy beat and the soul-stirring vocals of a reggae song, or the hardcore beat and lyrical prowess of a dancehall song.

See Also: What Is Reggae? 


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There are a quite a number of Jamaican artistes who have impacted and continue to impact the world of music and the world at large. Here are a few.

  1. Bob Marley

    No one should be surprised that the name of the reggae legend is first on the list. There is no other reggae artiste that has been more influential, inspirational or even more imitated than the king of reggae.

    With over 75 million records sold worldwide, induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 and on top of those amazing achievements, he is one of the most revered artists of all time.

    The late son of Nine Miles, St. Ann has brought millions of tourists from all over the world to visit the famous Bob Marley museum or to visit his boyhood home. Read more on the legend here.


  2. Peter Tosh

    This outspoken, unapologetic marijuana advocate and undeniable talent, is one of the most popular sons of reggae music.Tosh has made an indelible mark on reggae music, both as a member of the Wailers and as a solo act.Mr. ‘Stepping Razor’s’ music continues to resonate with audiences worldwide.


  3. Jimmy Cliff

    His enviable catalog, undeniable stage presence and overall musical greatness is what sets Jimmy Cliff apart from the rest. 

    His acting chops are nothing to sneeze at either, as his staring turn in the Jamaican classic ' The Harder They Come' still gets conversations started. 

    This son of Jamaica is one of our most beloved artistes and still to day this tours extensively.


  4. Dennis Brown

    This list would not be complete without the late crown prince of reggae himself.Brown's smooth , velvety voice and thought - provoking lyrics continues to inspire fans of reggae all over the world.

    Back To Top Of Jamaican Artistes


  5. Bunny Wailer

    Many people may not agree with this placement but Bunny does not get his just due as a reggae pioneer.Let us not forget that he was apart of Wailers and has had a notable solo career of his own and continues to command stages the world over.


  6. Shaggy

    Come on! Who doesn’t know the Boombastic one himself?Shaggy is one of the biggest selling artistes in Jamaica’s history, you know he is a Diamond selling artiste, but whose counting right?

    From his ‘Oh Carolina’ singing days, to recording one of the biggest, most inescapable hits of the early 2000s (of course you know it), It Wasn’t Me featuring Rik Rok on vocals.Let’s face it that entire Hot Shot album was a VIBE! Hey Sexy Lady, Angel, Hope  allllll hits.It doesn’t hurt that he is an amazing philanthropist and an unmatched performer.

    Let’s face it, Shaggy is a national and international treasure.

  7. Yet another platinum selling Jamaican who continues to put Jamaican jerk sauce on international collaborations and make them amazing. 

    You remember where you were when Gimme Di Light topped the Billboard charts right?

    What about when Get Busy was tearing down night clubs all over the world or when Temperature came out and we were all trying to do those dances from the video?


    Jamaicans at home and abroad puff their chest with pride at the mention of Sean Paul because no matter what, Sean is always  authentically, unapologetically Jamaican , and we LOVE that.

  8. Sean Paul

    'Just gimme di liiigght' and let me shine it on Dutty Paul because that man is a superstar!

    Yet another platinum selling Jamaican who continues to put Jamaican jerk sauce on international collaborations and make them amazing. 

    You remember where you were when Gimme Di Light topped the Billboard charts right? What about when Get Busy was tearing down night clubs all over the world or when Temperature came out and we were all trying to do those dances from the video?

    Jamaicans at home and abroad puff their chest with pride at the mention of Sean Paul because no matter what, Sean is always  authentically, unapologetically Jamaican , and we LOVE that.


  9. Beenie Man

    This list would NOT be complete without The Girl Dem Sugar, the King of the Dancehall himself. Beenie Man is ICONIC in dancehall circles ok! Revered! Often imitated , never duplicated, the King has more hits than we or anyone else can count in this lifetime.

    His international collaborations are nothing to sneeze at either ( HELLLO two words - JANET JACKSON, yeah we can drop the microphone after that).

    Also did you catch that Verzuz battle between him and another dancehall legend, Bounty Killa? If you have seen it, you were privileged to be apart of a master class about the art of performance, it was the best Verzuz battle to date!

    I said what I said!


  10. Bounty Killa

    You KNEW the Poor People’s Governor had to make an appearance, because he is a Jamaican legend! When you talk about hits, performance, star power, Bounty Killa personifies all of it.

    The Warlord  has also had his fair share of international collaborations over the years, chief among them was No Doubt an unlikely combination, but one that worked amazingly!

    Yes, we are going to bring up that Verzuz battle again, it was a performance MASTERPIECE!


  11. Toots Hibbert

    Quick, tell me, how many Jamaican musicians, except for Bob Marley, could boast that the members of the LEGENDARY Rolling Stones band are fans of theirs??? None!

    The late legendary lead singer of Toots and Maytals had an unmistakable voice that was somehow destined to sing a unique blend of rocksteady,  rock -and-roll and reggae.

    Oh and that Harder they Come movie soundtrack in the 70’s?? Toots and his crew’s contribution to that album was nothing short of spectacular.

Back To Top Of Jamaican Artistes


I know, I know, some of your favourites may not be here, but there are many artiste of Jamaican decent making waves right now, but tell us, who are some of your other favourites?


WATCH CLIP: Luciano, The Reggae MessenJAH, Sizzled At IRITS

Of all, if there is one that is my favourite, Top 10 or not, it is Luciano. And I happen to have a little video of him at IRITS at the Rasta Village a few months ago. Here you go.

Back To Top Of Jamaican Artistes

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A patriotic Jamaican who adore its culture, Wellesley has been using this medium to share what he calls 'the uniqueness of Jamaica with the world' since April 2007.  

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