Words by LargeUp Crew, Photo by Martei Korley—
Reggae returned in a big way in 2013, dominating the musical conversation out of Jamaica right from the first week of the year. That was when we named Chronixx our artist to watch for 2013, and the youthful singer didn’t disappoint, adding hits like “Smile” and “Here Comes Trouble” to his name while continuing to build hype with 2012 holdovers “Odd Ras” and “Behind Curtain.”
While headlines regarding the reggae revival tended to focus on Chronixx, colleagues Jesse Royal and Protoje had big years, too, energizing dances, radio and stageshows with tunes like “Wadada” and “Hail, Rastafari,” respectively. Just as notably, some of dancehall’s biggest names—Shaggy, Mavado, Wayne Marshall —returned to their reggae roots with one-drop and cultural tunes that blew their other 2013 work out of the water. Click here to see our picks for the year’s biggest reggae singles.