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Alton Ellis

Alton Nehemiah Ellis OD (1 September 1938 – 10 October 2008) was a Jamaican vocalist. One of the innovators of rocksteady who was given the informal title Godfather of Rocksteady.
Alton Ellis: The Pioneer of Jamaican Soul Music
When it comes to the pioneers of Jamaican music, Alton Ellis is a name that shouldn't be missed. He was not only an integral figure in the development of reggae music but was also known for his contribution to the emergence of rocksteady and soul music. Born and raised in Jamaica, Ellis left a legacy which is still appreciated and celebrated by music lovers all across the globe. In this article, we will delve into Alton Ellis' musical biography, explore his music genre and highlight some of his best songs and famous concerts.
Alton Nehemiah Ellis was born on September 1, 1938, in Trenchtown, Jamaica. He started his musical journey by singing in church choirs but finally made his professional debut in 1959 with the hit song, Muriel. From the early years of his career, Ellis felt passionate about soul music, and he blended it with reggae to create a new genre known as rocksteady. Alton and his contemporaries like Bob Marley and the Wailers, Peter Tosh, and Bunny Wailer worked together and laid the foundation of reggae music.
Ellis recorded several hits in his career but some of his iconic songs include I'm Still in Love with You, Rock Steady, Dance Crasher, and Get Ready for Rock Reggae Steady. Ellis's heavenly voice and soulful rhythms had a lasting impact on the music industry. His sound was unique and his music appealed to a wider audience around the world. Even today, you can still hear his influence in contemporary music.
Ellis performed at many famous concerts, including the One Love Peace Concert held in Kingston, Jamaica in April 1978. The concert was an effort to bring peace following the political unrest during the seventies. Bob Marley performed and invited several artists including Alton Ellis performing his famous song ‘I’m still in love with you’. Ellis’ performance was electric, and the crowd naturally responded by dancing and singing along. Another famous performance was seen in the Reggae Sunsplash festival, held annually in Jamaica. Ellis performed in the second year of the festival in 1979 and his performance was highly praised by critics.
Alton Ellis's contribution to music was not only limited to his hit songs and performances. He was also known for his collaborations with other artists. He recorded a duet with his sister, Hortense Ellis, called Breaking Up Is Hard To Do. Besides that, Ellis has collaborated with The Flames, Bongo Herman, and The Heptones.
Alton Ellis's life and music had a positive impact on the music industry in Jamaica and worldwide. He was an influential figure in the development of reggae music. His unique blend of soul music and reggae created a new genre known as rocksteady. Ellis's contribution as an artist, writer, and performer was immeasurable. His music touched many people's lives and inspired many artists around the world. He was known for his passion for music and his incredible talent. His legacy continues to inspire and influence new generations of music lovers worldwide. If you're a music lover, do yourself a favour and listen to some of the great music created by the legendary Alton Ellis.



The Story of Alton Ellis – The Father of Rocksteady

When we talk about some of the most legendary artists in the Jamaican music industry, we definitely can't miss mentioning Alton Ellis. Born in Kingston, Jamaica in 1938, Ellis is known as the Father of Rocksteady and is considered an important pillar of the reggae music movement. Throughout his career, he produced multiple hit albums and his music continues to inspire generations even today. In this post, we'll look at his beginnings, his most famous albums, his influences and popular songs.

Ellis' started his musical career at the age of fourteen when he joined a vocal group named The Cavaliers. The group member split up and Ellis later formed his own band alongside Eddie Perkins, called The Flames. The band released multiple singles, most of them were a great hit however, it was the single ‘Muriel’ that put him under the spotlight. This brought him a contract with Studio One in 1965, followed by multiple successful albums such as Sings Rock and Soul, More Alton Ellis, and Cry Tough. They established Ellis' name in the local music market and expanded his reach to the international stage.

Ellis was an influential figure of Jamaican music, particularly for the Rocksteady sub-genre. Apart from his phenomenal vocal ability, he was an accomplished songwriter and producer as well. His music influences were a blend of American R&B and soul music merged with the Caribbean rhythm. Ellis's music's most notable feature is the ability to convey heartfelt expressions, as prevalent in his lyrics that touched people's hearts.

In 1979, Ellis recorded the album Still In Love with London-based reggae producer J. R. Bailey. Again, this was a huge hit and became one of his most successful albums. The title track Still In Love was the most successful song on the album and has since transcended time to become one of his most iconic songs up to date. It’s one of those songs that continue to resonate with fans of reggae music.

Ellis produced music until the early 2000s when his heart ailment seriously slowed down his career. He passed away in 2008 but his music continues to gain fans worldwide. To date, a lot of his works have been remastered and re-released, and his impact on reggae music is continuously celebrated.

Alton Ellis's legacy is significant and his music continues to serve as inspiration to many musicians even today. His contribution to Jamaican music cannot be understated. Not only was he influential and innovative, but he was also heavily connected to his audience, through his sincerity and his ability to express joy and heartbreak. He has proven to be integral in the development of rocksteady and later reggae, and if you have not had the pleasure of listening to his music before, take the time now to listen and appreciate the outstanding style and talent of Alton Ellis.
Tag: Alton Ellis, musical biography, best songs, playlist
1 - These Eyesde Gd73
2 - And I Love Herde Melody Camp
3 - Diseases
4 - It's A Shame
5 - If I Could Rule This Worldde Browningbbw
6 - Lyrical Satirical I.
7 - Dance Crasher
8 - Reason In The Sky
9 - Hooked on a Feeling
10 - What Does It Take (to Win Your
11 - Rock Steady
12 - Willow Tree
13 - Why Birds Follow Spring
14 - Breaking Up
15 - Baby I Love You
16 - La La Means I Love You
17 - Can I Change My Mind
18 - Remember That Sunday
19 - Hurting Me
20 - What Does It Take (to Win Your Love)
21 - I'm Still In Love
22 - Ain't That Loving You
23 - I'm Still In Love With You
24 - It's A Shame
25 - Blackman's Word (black Man's Pride)
26 - Girl I've Got A Date
27 - I Am Still In Love With You
28 - If I Could Rule This World
29 - Black Man's World - Aka "black Man, White Man"
30 - I'll Be Waiting
31 - I Don't Want To Be Right
32 - Working On A Groovy Thing
33 - You Made Me So Very Happy
34 - You Make Me So Very Happy
35 - Cry Tough
36 - You Make Me Happy
37 - All My Tears Come Rolling
38 - You've Made Me So Very Happy
39 - Sunday Coming
40 - These Eyes
41 - Play It Cool
42 - Let Him Try
43 - The Picture Was You
44 - I'm Just A Guy
45 - I Can't Stop Now
46 - Sitting In The Park
47 - Blessings Of Love
48 - Too Late To Turn Back Now
49 - Big Bad Boy
50 - What Does It Take
51 - It's True
52 - Gonna Take A Miracle
53 - Lord Deliver Us