The Women Essential To Reggae And Dancehall

(L to R) Marcia Griffiths, Patricia Chin, Sevana, and Sister Nancy


The Women Essential To Reggae And Dancehall

In honor of Women’s History Month, highlights some of the foundational women who have shaped the sounds of reggae and dancehall as well as spotlights one artist who is taking one of the genres into the future

GRAMMYs/Mar 30, 2021 - 04:59 am

When many people think of reggae, one name immediately comes to mind: Bob Marley. The legend is just one of many prominent men—including the late Bunny Wailer and Toots Hibbert—whose voice and production work get major credit for shaping the popular Jamaican genre as well as other sounds of the Caribbean.

The reality is, women have built much of Jamaica’s musical scene. From the freedom sounds of ska to reggae’s conscious lyrics and grooving downbeat—which originated in the late '60s before catching fire worldwide the following decade—to the sexually suggestive, digitized and dubbed out world of dancehall that sprung up in the '80s, women are the largely unheralded backbone of these sounds. Singers Doreen Shaffer (The Skatalites), Patsy Todd, and Millie Small (“My Boy Lollipop”) were among the many women whose vocals appeared on ska records in the early '60s; Phyllis Dillon, Flora Adams, among others, were the voices leading rocksteady; Rita Marley, Judy Mowatt, Jennifer Lara, and Althea and Donna operated at the nexus of reggae and lovers rock, a romantic style of reggae; Lady G, Diana King and Lady Saw pioneered dancehall style. Today, women continue to lead a new generation of artists in reggae and dancehall—Koffee and Lila Iké among them.

In honor of Women’s History Month, highlights some of the foundational women who have shaped the sounds of reggae and dancehall as well as spotlights one artist who is taking one of the genres into the future.

Sonia Pottinger: The First Woman Jamaican Record Producer

Sonia Eloise Pottinger OD forged her own path just as Jamaica's music industry was developing. Largely considered one of the greatest Jamaican record producers, Pottinger produced legends in ska, rocksteady—predecessors to reggae— and gospel from the mid ‘60s to mid ‘80s via her Gay Feet, Excel, Pep, High Note, and Glory record labels.

With her husband, Lindon Pottinger, she founded multiple labels, a shop and a recording studio which saw artists such as the Maytals, Derrick Harriott and Lord Tanamo come through its doors. Notably, she was the first woman to co-own the first music facility in Jamaica owned and operated by a Black person. 

When Pottinger and her husband separated at the beginning of the rocksteady era, she launched her own Gay Feet label to much success. Pottinger’s label hits included the Gaylads’ classic “Hard to Confess” (also on High Note) and “Swing and Dine” by The Melodians. Rocksteady was the precursor to reggae and Pottinger's early successes in this genre set her up as a leading producer. When reggae hit the town, popular singers Delroy Wilson, Judy Mowatt and Ken Boothe came into her orbit, further cementing the credibility of Pottinger and her labels.

However, Pottinger had more than an ear for good tunes. When her good friend and producer Arthur “Duke” Reid died, she acquired his Treasure Isle Records catalog and recording studio. She brought in notable acts—including Justin Hinds and The Dominoes, Bob Andy, Marcia Griffiths, Beres Hammond, and Sly and Robbie—and also licensed Treasure Isle tracks to overseas companies such as the famed Trojan Records. Her foresight, business acumen and ear were instrumental in the worldwide spread of reggae music and her influence has lasted far beyond her death in 2010.

Patricia Chin: The Woman Running The Largest Independent Dancehall And Reggae Label 

Reggae singer Tanto Metro and VP founder Patricia Chin in 2004. Photo: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

At 83 years old, Patricia Chin, aka Miss Pat, has seen quite an evolution of the music that grew from her native Jamaica. For over 40 years, Chin has run VP Records—the legendary shop, distributor and label dedicated to dancehall and reggae. Miss Pat and her late husband Vincent “Randy” Chin founded VP in Queens, New York in 1979 after fleeing political violence in Kingston. Today, VP Records is the world’s largest independent label, distributor, and publisher of reggae and dancehall music, with more than 25,000 song titles—and has the rare designation of being woman-owned and run. (In 2015, Miss Pat became the first woman to win the American Association of Independent Music’s Lifetime Achievement award.) VP has seen generations of reggae come of age and played a crucial role in the development of the genre in New York and beyond.

While Miss Pat and Randy initially tried to push roots reggae to their New York audience, the sound of dancehall took hold because of its similarity to hip-hop. Over the years, VP has helped launch the careers of reggae and dancehall superstars such as Lady Saw, Maxi Priest, Bounty Killer, and Beenie Man. Yet Chin’s roots are even deeper. Back in Kingston, Miss Pat and Randy operated the popular record store Randy's Records, distribution company and recording studio beginning in the late ‘50s. Chin held sessions with Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer and many other prominent musicians at the intersection of ska, rocksteady and reggae. She also pioneered the compilation album in an otherwise singles-focused market.

In her memoir Miss Pat: My Reggae Music Journey, Chin details VP’s story as well as her tales of growing up Chinese and Indian in Jamaica where she dealt with discrimination in the music business and many personal woes. In Miss Pat, hip-hop founding father DJ Kool Herc makes a comparison that puts Chin’s influence into perspective: “What Berry Gordy was to Motown, Patricia Chin is to VP Records and the reggae industry.” 

Marcia Griffiths: The Empress Of Reggae

Legendary singer Marcia Griffiths has one of the lengthiest careers in reggae, gracing stages since 1964. One of the most popular women singers, Griffiths' gorgeous vocals featured on records in ska, reggae, rocksteady, and dancehall styles. Griffiths first sang with ska group Byron Lee and the Dragonaires before recording duets with Tony Gregory, Bob Andy and Bob Marley, among others, for Studio One label owned by Coxsone Dodd. Her first No. 1 single, the rocksteady to reggae “Feel Like Jumping,” was released in 1968. Two years later she’d score an international hit by partnering with Bob Andy for a reggae cover of “Young, Gifted and Black.”

In 1974, Griffiths, Rita Marley and Judy Mowatt formed the I-Three, singing backup for Bob Marley (reggae historian Roger Steffens posits that Griffiths recorded all the back-up vocals Exodus). The I-Three released music after Bob Marley passed, and Griffiths continued to produce records as a solo act. Her 1983 single “Electric Boogie” (written by Bunny Wailer) was a massive hit and its remix inspired the dance we know today.

“Promoters and producers did as they liked–made passes at you and ripped you off at the same time,” Griffiths told The Montreal Gazette, but her golden voice and tireless ethic kept the singer going. “Griffiths' versatility and knack for choosing interesting collaborators ensured her relevancy well into the 21st century,” Steffens wrote in a biography, noting that the singer continues to record and tour internationally. To date, Marcia Griffiths has over 15 albums to her name and has worked with Shaggy, Buju Banton, Cutty Ranks, and Toots and The Maytals. In 2014, she received the Jamaican Order of Distinction for her contributions to reggae music.

Sister Nancy: The Bam Bam Dancehall Queen 

It’s highly unlikely that you haven’t heard Sister Nancy’s 1982 dancehall crusher “Bam Bam”–either in its entirety or sampled by another artist. Yet Nancy (born Ophlin Russell) did more than just create a hit; she truly broke the mold by becoming the first woman dancehall DJ when she was still a teenager and dominating Kingston’s mostly male sound system culture.

“People discourage you. They tell you that you're not good,” Sister Nancy told The Fader. “It wasn't for them to tell me that. I just knew this is what I wanted to do and I'm not gonna stop.” Sister Nancy’s debut record, One Two, was released in 1982 and while a few of its tracks were popular in Jamaica, “Bam Bam” truly took flight. The tune was allegedly first played in New York by DJ Afrika Bambaataa and has since become the most sampled reggae song of all time–including by Kanye West and Jay-Z. Yet, because the song was credited to producer Winston Riley, Sister Nancy received no compensation for her hit.

Nancy moved to the States in 1996 and worked as an accountant. Thirty-two years after she recorded the song, Nancy heard “Bam Bam” used in a 2014 Reebok commercial and sued. She was paid for 10 years of royalties and given 50 percent rights to her original album as well as publishing credits. With money in hand, Sister Nancy quit her job and started performing all over the world.

Sevana: The Next Generation Inna Style

Thirty-year-old Jamaican singer/songwriter Sevana melds reggae, lovers rock and R&B to create a standout sound among the current generation of reggae and dancehall artists. She is one of today’s most influential singers, broadening the interpretation of reggae and dancehall genres for a wider audience, recontextualizing the genres through personal lyrics and a unique pop sensibility. With a warm vocal range that swings from mango sweet to dancehall sex appeal, Sevana has a serious crossover appeal without losing a hint of authenticity.

Sevana first arrived on Jamaica's national stage when her girl group, SLR, won third place on the country’s version of American Idol. In 2014, she collaborated with fellow reggae singer Protoje, becoming part of his In.Digg.Nation collective. Sevana released a six-track EP in 2016, and followed with a sophomore effort, Be Somebody, in 2020. Backed by a six-piece band, Sevana’s latest is a groovy meditation on love, loss and faith. “My greatest inspiration has been my lived experiences,” she told Hypebae. “Looking back at all I’ve overcome, I still manage to be high functioning and it makes me feel unstoppable.”

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Ziggy Marley On 'Rebellion Rises,' Touring, Kendrick Lamar & More

Ziggy Marley

Photo: Courtesy of Sony Music


Ziggy Marley On 'Rebellion Rises,' Touring, Kendrick Lamar & More

The GRAMMY-winning reggae legend talks about the positive vibes behind his latest project, his admiration for Lamar's 'DAMN.' and more

GRAMMYs/Jun 13, 2018 - 11:01 pm

GRAMMY winner Ziggy Marley still has plenty of fire left in him to spread a message of love for all humanity. On his seventh studio album, Rebellion Rises, which was released May 18, Marley ushered in a new set of songs that not only throw a spotlight on his overall purpose of unity, they also come together to form the album he feels is one of the finest of his career.

With such a rich history to draw from, Marley made Rebellion Rises in the now, with his son Isaiah literally by his side, as evidenced by his presence on the album's cover — Isaiah shows up hand in hand with Marley.

But the galvanizing musical and lyrical material contained within Rebellion Rises is what proves the singer/songwriter is committed to the message initially amplified by his iconic father and proliferated through his own legacy. Songs such as the title track and "Circle Of Peace" on the new album reveal the transcendent messenger Marley has become with lyrics like, "I stand in the circle of peace because only the willing will see their dreams."

Marley has also taken his music and message out on the road, kicking off the Rebellion Rises Tour on June 8 and performing a good deal of his new song — along with some of his and his father's most well-known classics — around the globe before wrapping up back in the States on Sept. 16.

We caught up with the reggae legend right before he headed out on tour to talk about his latest album, how his son has influenced his work, how he prepares set lists for his upcoming shows, his thoughts on Kendrick Lamar, and more.

Rebellion, as it's defined in the dictionary, can take on a negative connotation, as resisting authority, for example. But this album is filled with positive messages, inspirational moments and uplifting passages. Can you walk us through the theme behind Rebellion Rises?

The theme behind the album is really the voice of humanity and also representing humanity, and the rebellion is the awakening of the humanity within us so that we can balance the world with more love, with more unity, less divisiveness, less hate. So that's what we're rebelling for, and that's what the theme of the album is about. We don't want to focus on what we're against; we'd rather focus on what we are for.

I saw an Instagram post where you said that your son, Isaiah, has been a part of the album from start to finish. Can you detail how he played a role?

Isaiah is 2 years old now, so I think he was on tour with me when he was 1. … He has a strong connection to me ... and so he's always around me. So when I was writing the songs, he was there. And he's very smart. He's a very smart guy. So I'm taking guitar and repeat what I'm saying. And then I was taking the photo shoot, he was always in my photos. So he's just a part of this album, really. … He's an inspiration, a little angel beside me, just like being my shadow. So it was cool having him [there] like that.

You mentioned your tour kicking off June 8. With such a growing catalog to choose from, how will you go about picking the set list?

I've been working on that. I'm gonna do a lot of songs from this album, cause this album, for me personally as a listener and not just my ego speaking, but I can be impartial to myself, this album is one of the only albums that I actually can listen to myself, like the whole thing, back to front without skipping or [hearing a song] I don't like. ... I really like this album. I'm planning to do a lot of these songs, new songs on this tour, which we haven't done in the way I'm gonna do it for a long time. The first three songs [are] new songs. … I love them, I love how they feel so I'm working on having most of them on the set list.

I have a set and then I have a master list and then we're like a hundred songs we can pick and choose and see what happens. I have some of my father's songs, which I mix in there. This tour is Rebellion Rises Tour, but in my mind I see it more as a rally for humanity. This is humanity's rally. … This is not about a specific social issue or a specific political issue or religious issue, this is about humanity as a whole and this is the rally for humanity. … I'm really sticking to songs with strong messages that affect and speaks on humanity and what we're going through right now and this album has a lot to do with it.

I read recent piece where you picked your top five albums of all time and one of them was Kendrick Lamar's DAMN. So what is it about Kendrick's music that you think resonated with you?

Honesty. I think honesty and seeing him as being true, not a façade. Some people do their music and then perform, and it's a façade. It's not who they are but the character that they're playing. Kendrick seems true to me. He doesn't seem to be trying to be something else than what he is. I respect that in art and a musician, so that's what I love in music and because of that, because I can sense the truthfulness in that.

I would be remiss if I didn't ask this question. You've won eight GRAMMYs, including three consecutive wins for Best Reggae Album when you've been up for it. Of course we want to know, where do you keep your GRAMMYs?

The GRAMMYs? My wife really manages the GRAMMYs. She's the one who takes care of them and puts them on the fireplace. She takes care of that for me. I'm gonna keep them. I like them. They look shiny still. Them really shiny [laughs].

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Beyoncé To Alison Krauss: 9 Times Women Made GRAMMY History


Beyoncé To Alison Krauss: 9 Times Women Made GRAMMY History

Celebrate Women's History month with Ella Fitzgerald's firsts, Alison Krauss and Beyoncé's mosts, and more history-making women at the GRAMMYs

GRAMMYs/May 15, 2017 - 01:36 pm

Updated May 5, 2021.

To highlight Women's History Month this March, we dug into our archives all the way back to the GRAMMY Awards' beginnings in 1958 to acknowledge the women who have made GRAMMY — and music — history. From the first women to ever win a GRAMMY to the top GRAMMY-winning woman, first female GRAMMY performers and the first female GRAMMY host, take a look at nine examples of how women blazed trails through the lens of the GRAMMYs.

Ella Fitzgerald: The first woman to win multiple GRAMMYs

The 1st GRAMMY Awards took place in 1958, and women were among the first crop of recipients. The first female multiple GRAMMY winner was jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald, who took home two statues: Best Vocal Performance, Female and Best Jazz Performance, Individual. The roster of first-time female GRAMMY winners also included Keely Smith, Salli Terry, Barbara Cook, Pert Kelton, Helen Raymond, and Renata Tebaldi.

Who were the first women to win GRAMMYs in the General Field?

The General Field categories — Record, Song and Album Of The Year and Best New Artist — are among some of the most coveted awards in music. Astrud Gilberto became the first woman to win Record Of The Year when she won with Stan Getz for "The Girl From Ipanema" for 1964. The first Song Of The Year female win went to Carole King for "You've Got A Friend" for 1971. The first female Best New Artist was country singer/songwriter Bobbie Gentry. And the first female winner for Album Of The Year went to Judy Garland for 1961 for Judy At Carnegie Hall.

Carole King: The first woman to win multiple General Field GRAMMYs

The first woman to win multiple GRAMMYs in the General Field was King, when she swept Record ("It's Too Late"), Album (Tapestry) and Song Of The Year ("You've Got A Friend") for 1971. The first women to win multiple GRAMMYs in the same General Field categories include Roberta Flack, who took Record Of The Year for 1972 and 1973, for "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" and "Killing Me Softly With His Song," respectively. Lauryn Hill, Norah Jones and Alison Krauss have each won Album Of The Year twice, but only once in each case for their own recordings. Taylor Swift won Album Of The Year twice for 2009 and 2015, the first woman to do so as a solo artist. At the 59th GRAMMYs, Adele became the second solo female artist to win Album Of The Year twice. Additionally, she became the first artist in GRAMMY history to sweep Record, Song and Album Of The Year twice in her career, after doing so for 2011 and again for 2016.

Beyoncé: The woman with the most GRAMMY wins

At the 63rd GRAMMY Awards in 2021, Beyoncé became the performing artist with the most career GRAMMY wins ever (28) as well as the most nominated woman artist (79). (Quincy Jones also has 28 GRAMMY wins, yet primarily as a producer/composer).

Read: Who Are The Top GRAMMY Awards Winners Of All Time? Who Has The Most GRAMMYs?

Ella Fitzgerald, Wanda Jackson: The first women to perform on the GRAMMYs

The first televised GRAMMY event, a taped "NBC Sunday Showcase," in honor of the 2nd GRAMMY Awards, aired Nov. 29, 1959. It was Fitzgerald's performance on this broadcast that earned her the distinction of being the first woman to take the GRAMMY stage. When the GRAMMYs transitioned to a live television broadcast format for the 13th GRAMMY Awards in 1971, the first solo female performer was country singer Wanda Jackson singing "Wonder Could I Live There Anymore."

Bonnie Raitt: The most GRAMMY performances

Singer/songwriter Bonnie Raitt is the woman who has performed the most at the GRAMMYs. From her first solo performance of "Thing Called Love" at the 32nd GRAMMY Awards in 1990 through her latest performance in honor of B.B. King with Chris Stapleton and Gary Clark Jr. at the 58th GRAMMY Awards, Raitt has graced the stage nine times. In a tie for a close second are Franklin and Whitney Houston, who each notched eight career GRAMMY performances.

Watch: All the GRAMMY performers from the 1960s–1970s

Whoopi Goldberg: The first female GRAMMY host

Whoopi Goldberg served as the GRAMMYs' first female host at the 34th GRAMMY Awards in 1992. An EGOT (Emmy, GRAMMY, Oscar, and Tony) winner, the comedian already had an impressive array of credentials when she helmed the GRAMMY stage. Not one to shy away from pushing the envelope, she delivered arguably one of the raunchiest jokes in GRAMMY history when referencing the show's accounting firm: "I must tell you, Deloitte & Touche are two things I do nightly."

And the first female Special Merit Awards recipients were?

The inaugural Recording Academy Special Merit Award was given in 1963 to Bing Crosby, but it wasn't long until women made their mark. Fitzgerald was the first woman to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award in 1967. The first woman to receive a Trustees Award was Christine M. Farnon in 1992, who served as The Recording Academy's National Executive Director for more than 20 years. Liza Minnelli became the first female artist to receive a GRAMMY Legend Award in 1990.

The first recordings by women to be inducted into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame

Established in 1973 by The Academy's Board of Trustees to honor outstanding recordings that were made before the inception of the GRAMMY Awards, the first female recipients were inducted into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame in 1976. Billie Holiday's "God Bless The Child" marked the first solo female recording. Gershwin's Porgy & Bess (Opera Version), featuring Camilla Williams, and the original Broadway cast version of "Oklahoma!," featuring Joan Roberts, were inducted into the Hall that same year.

From Abbey Road to "Zip-A-Dee-Doo Dah," view the full list of GRAMMY Hall Of Fame recordings



The GRAMMYs' Trailblazing Women, Part One

GRAMMYs/Dec 3, 2014 - 04:22 am

By Paul Grein

Women have been making history at the GRAMMYs as long as the awards have been presented. In 1958, the first year of the awards, Ella Fitzgerald won two awards: Best Vocal Performance, Female, and Best Jazz Performance, Individual. Opera star Renata Tebaldi and pop singer Keely Smith also took home awards.

Since March is Women's History Month, let's see which women were the first to win in various GRAMMY categories.

These are the first women to win in each current category that has been in place for at least five years. There are 56 categories that meet these criteria, so we're dividing the list in two. Today, we'll look at 26 categories, including Best Comedy Album, Best Music Video and Producer Of The Year, Classical. Tomorrow, we'll look at the remaining 30 categories (including the "big four" awards) as well as the Special Merit Awards.

The fine print: The category names are as they appeared this year. In many cases, the wording has changed over the years. Except in categories that exclusively recognize behind-the-scenes contributions, the focus here is on the first female artists to win. Where the first woman to win shared the prize with a man, we also show the first woman to win on her own.

Best Americana Album
Mavis Staples won the 2010 award for You Are Not Alone.

Best Bluegrass Album
Alison Krauss won the 1990 award for I've Got That Old Feeling.

Best Reggae Album
Sandra "Puma" Jones shared the 1984 award (the first year it was presented) with the male members of Black Uhuru for Anthem.

Best World Music Album
Cesária Évora took the 2003 award for Voz D'Amor.

Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books & Storytelling)
Diane Linkletter won the 1969 award for We Love You, Call Collect, a collaboration with her father, TV personality Art Linkletter. The award was posthumous: Diane Linkletter committed suicide on Oct. 4, 1969, at age 20. Eight years later, actress Julie Harris became the first woman to win on her own for The Belle Of Amherst.

Best Comedy Album
Jo Stafford shared the 1960 award with her husband Paul Weston for Best Comedy Performance (Musical) for their comically off-key Jonathan And Darlene Edwards In Paris, which they released under those alter-egos. Eleven years later, Lily Tomlin became the first woman to win on her own for This Is A Recording.

Best Musical Theater Album
Broadway legends Ethel Merman and Gwen Verdon tied for the 1959 award. Merman won for "Gypsy"; Verdon for "Redhead." Micki Grant was the first woman to win for writing or co-writing a score. She won for 1972's "Don't Bother Me, I Can't Cope."

Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media
Marilyn Bergman shared the 1974 award for The Way We Were with her husband, Alan Bergman, and Marvin Hamlisch.

Best Song Written For Visual Media
Cynthia Weil shared the 1987 award (the first year it was presented) for "Somewhere Out There" (from An American Tail). Weil co-wrote the ballad with her husband, Barry Mann, and James Horner. Two years later, Carly Simon became the first woman to win on her own for "Let The River Run" (from Working Girl).

Best Instrumental Composition
The late Jean Hancock shared the 1996 award with her brother, Herbie Hancock, for "Manhattan (Island Of Lights And Love)." The award was posthumous: Jean Hancock died in a 1985 plane crash. Maria Schneider was the first woman to win on her own. She took the 2007 award for "Cerulean Skies."

Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)
Joni Mitchell shared the 1974 award with Tom Scott for arranging "Down To You," a track from her GRAMMY Hall Of Fame-inducted album, Court And Spark. Nan Schwartz was the first woman to win on her own. She took the 2008 award for arranging Natalie Cole's recording of the standard "Here's That Rainy Day."

Best Recording Package
Jann Haworth shared the 1967 award with Peter Blake as art directors on the Beatles' landmark Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. Janet Perr was the first woman to win on her own. She took the 1984 award as art director on Cyndi Lauper's She's So Unusual.

Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package
Gail Zappa shared the 1995 award with her late husband, Frank Zappa, as art directors for his Civilization Phaze III. (Frank Zappa died in 1993.) Susan Archie was the first woman to win on her own. She took the 2002 award as art director of Screamin' And Hollerin' The Blues — The Worlds Of Charley Patton.

Best Album Notes
Thulani Davis shared the 1992 award as an album notes writer on Aretha Franklin's Queen Of Soul — The Atlantic Recordings. Her co-winners were Tom Dowd, Ahmet Ertegun, Arif Mardin, Dave Marsh, David Ritz, and Jerry Wexler.

Best Historical Album
Ethel Gabriel shared the 1982 award as a producer of The Tommy Dorsey/Frank Sinatra Sessions — Vols. 1, 2 & 3. Her co-winners were Alan Dell and Don Wardell.

Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical
Trina Shoemaker shared the 1998 award for engineering Sheryl Crow's The Globe Sessions. Her co-winners were Tchad Blake and Andy Wallace. Eleven years later, Imogen Heap became the first woman to win on her own for engineering her own album, Ellipse.

Best Surround Sound Album
Darcy Proper shared the 2006 award as the surround mastering engineer on Donald Fagen's Morph The Cat. Her co-winners were Fagen and Elliot Scheiner.

Best Engineered Album, Classical
Leslie Ann Jones and Brandie Lane shared the 2010 award for engineering Quincy Porter: Complete Viola Works by Eliesha Nelson and John McLaughlin Williams. Their co-winners were Kory Kruckenberg and David Sabee. (Note: In 1999 Jones became the first female Chair of The Recording Academy's Board of Trustees.)

Producer Of The Year, Classical
Joanna Nickrenz shared the 1983 award with Marc Aubort. Ten years later, Judith Sherman became the first woman to win on her own.

Best Opera Recording
Jeannine Altmeyer, Ortrun Wenkel and Gwyneth Jones shared the 1982 award for their work on "Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen." Their co-winners were conductor Pierre Boulez, Peter Hofmann, Manfred Jung and Heinz Zednick.

Best Choral Performance
Margaret Hillis shared the 1977 award as choral director of "Verdi: Requiem" by the Chicago Symphony Chorus. Her co-winner was conductor Georg Solti.

Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance
Anne-Sophie Mutter shared the 1999 award with Lambert Orkis for "Beethoven: The Violin Sonatas."

Best Classical Vocal Solo
Soprano Renata Tebaldi took the 1958 award (the first year of the GRAMMYs) for "Operatic Recital."

Best Contemporary Classical Composition
Joan Tower took the 2007 award for composing "Made In America," recorded by Leonard Slatkin and the Nashville Symphony.

Best Music Video/Best Music Film
Olivia Newton-John won the 1982 award for Video Of The Year for Olivia Physical, a 13-song video album. Today, that would fall into the Best Music Film category. Paula Abdul won the 1990 award for Best Music Video — Short Form for "Opposites Attract." Today, that would fall into the Best Music Video category.

And that's just half of the list. Come back tomorrow for part two, which will feature such stars as Judy Garland, Carole King, Madonna, Shakira, and Patti LaBelle.

(Paul Grein, a veteran music journalist and historian, writes regularly for Yahoo Music.)

In Celebration Of Bob Marley: Late Reggae Hero’s 75th Birthday Commemorated With Special Releases & Events

Bob Marley in 1973

Michael Putland/Getty Images


In Celebration Of Bob Marley: Late Reggae Hero’s 75th Birthday Commemorated With Special Releases & Events

This year also marks the 40th anniversary of the timeless classic "Redemption Song"

GRAMMYs/Feb 6, 2020 - 05:42 am

There are few artists whose legacy of activism, global impact and fostering human connection through music surpasses that of Jamaican-born reggae legend, Bob Marley. In celebration of the late musical and cultural icon's 75th birthday on Feb. 6, 2020, the Marley family will host a year-long run of events and releases in collaboration with UMe and Island Records.

Dubbed Marley75, the commemorative plans will include live events and the release of exclusive digital content, recordings and other "unearthed treasures" that are said to encompass music, fashion, art, film, technology and sport.

Kicking off Marley75's first of many live celebrations to come, this spring Marley's sons Ziggy and Stephen Marley will come together to perform an extensive selection of beloved Marley hits. They will headline Redondo Beach's immersive three-day music experience, The BeachLife Festival on May 1-3.

Related: Bob Marley's London Home Honored With English Heritage Blue Plaque

2020 also marks the 40th anniversary of Redemption Song," which appeared on Marley's final studio album, Uprising. Today, the Marley family and Island Records premiered a new music video for the track that features animations from over 2,700 original drawings by French artists Octave Marsal and Theo De Gueltzl. The video is inspired by Marley's homeland, Jamaica, and takes viewers inside the imaginary and self-reflective world of Marley's guitar while highlighting his messages of hope and empowerment.

In 2001, Marley posthumously received the GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award. His music has also received multiple entries into the GRAMMY Hall of Fame, as well as a 1994 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction. Nearly 25 percent of all reggae listened to in the United States can be credited to Marley's discography, according to a statement.

Additional information on Marley75 events has yet to be revealed. In the meantime, you can celebrate Marley's legacy by tuning in to his official YouTube account where upcoming content from the artist's estate archives will be posted throughout the year.

Bob Marley & The Wailers' 'Exodus' | For The Record