Stewart Copeland's micro-time led me to the heart of Reggae. I was resistant at first. Being a "dyed-in-the-wool" Rhythm and Blues devotee, I initially thought of Reggae as middle-of-the-road R and B, a non-committal approach rather than the darkness of R and B's soul. But as I got deeper into its processes, I not onlt felt its lightness of being, but its limitless ability to transform anything to sit on its rhythmic ostinato. The first movement of Symphony No. 2 Reggae which along with Symphony No. 3 Heavy Metal and Symphony No. 4 Funk comprises a trilogy was written fifteen years ago, May 8, 1984. I continued working over the next three years and completed Reggae on May 20, 1987.
Jamaican in origin, this rock music with its blues style, often with a political or religious message, was derived from Rastafarian beliefs, a sect devoted to Haile Selassie, former Emperor of Ethiopia, who believed himself to be a descendant of Sheba. Espousing love, peace and ganja (marijuana) Rastas wear their hair in dreadlocks, rope-like boya strands.
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