top of page
  • Writer's picture

Unforgettable Icons: The Top 10 Roots Dancehall Artistes of All Time

In the colorful tapestry of dancehall music, certain artistes shine as beacons of creativity and innovation. From the late 1970s to the 1980s, a golden era emerged in Jamaica, birthing a new wave of sounds that would captivate audiences worldwide.

The Top 10 Roots Dancehall Artistes of All Time

Here, we pay homage to the pioneers, the trailblazers, and the unforgettable icons who shaped the classic style of dancehall music. Without further ado, let's delve into the top 10 traditional/Roots dancehall artistes of all time:

1. Yellowman: Known for his distinct voice and charismatic stage presence, Yellowman broke barriers with his bold lyrics and infectious rhythms. His contributions to dancehall music are immeasurable, earning him the title of "King Yellowman" among fans.

2. Shabba Ranks: With his larger-than-life persona and commanding presence, Shabba Ranks dominated the dancehall scene with hits like "Mr. Loverman" and "Ting-A-Ling." His smooth vocals and catchy hooks solidified his status as a dancehall legend.

3. Buju Banton: Rising to prominence in the early 1990s, Buju Banton captivated audiences with his powerful vocals and socially conscious lyrics. Songs like "Boom Bye Bye" and "Murderer" sparked controversy and cemented his place in dancehall history.

4. Admiral Bailey: A true pioneer of dancehall music, Admiral Bailey's energetic performances and witty lyrics set him apart from his peers. Tracks like "Big Belly Man" and "Punanny" remain timeless classics in the dancehall canon.

5. Super Cat (aka Wild Apache): Super Cat, also known as Wild Apache, brought a unique blend of reggae and dancehall to the forefront of the music industry. His dynamic style and charismatic stage presence earned him international acclaim and adoration from fans worldwide.

6. Ninjaman: Infamous for his rough-edged delivery and hardcore persona, Ninjaman made a lasting impact on the dancehall scene with his gritty lyrics and streetwise charm. Tracks like "Murder Dem" and "Border Clash" solidified his reputation as a dancehall heavyweight.

7. Papa San: With his smooth vocals and heartfelt lyrics, Papa San captivated audiences with his unique blend of dancehall and gospel music. His crossover appeal and positive message resonated with fans of all ages, earning him widespread recognition and acclaim.

8. Cocoa Tea: Renowned for his soulful voice and socially conscious lyrics, Cocoa Tea remains a beloved figure in the world of dancehall music. Songs like "Rikers Island" and "Lost My Sonia" showcase his versatility and talent as an artist.

9. Tiger: Known for his rapid-fire delivery and witty wordplay, Tiger brought a fresh perspective to dancehall music with his energetic performances and infectious energy. Tracks like "No Wanga Gut" and "Bam Bam" solidified his status as a dancehall innovator.

10. Lieutenant Stitchie: A true lyrical genius, Lieutenant Stitchie captivated audiences with his intricate rhymes and rapid-fire delivery. His dynamic stage presence and charismatic persona earned him a loyal following and a place among the legends of dancehall.

These 10 traditional dancehall artists played pivotal roles in shaping the genre's history and legacy, leaving an indelible mark on the music industry. Their contributions continue to inspire and influence generations of artists, ensuring that their legacy will endure for years to come.


bottom of page