Little Known Black History Fact: Black Music Magazine

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  • Black Music Magazine is the first major magazine of the UK showcasing Reggae music artists. The first issue was established in December 1973 and featured Stevie Wonder on the cover. Taking a deeper approach to the Reggae genre, Black Music Magazine was a combination of its predecessors, Blues and Soul and Black Echoes, which mostly featured chart rundowns.

    Some of the artists featured on the cover of BMM were Third World, Pete Tosh, Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer.  It wasn’t surprising that a magazine featuring Reggae artists was out of the UK, as the country was the first to publish a magazine solely about music in 1926 called “Melody Maker.”

    The idea for Black Music Magazine was inspired by writer Carl Gayle. Gayle was a Jamaican-born cleric working at the DMV. He wrote an article called “Let it Rock” that was noticed by a new publishing company called IPC. He helped the publishers see a need for a predominately Reggae publication. Gayle introduced the language of Patois to the British population through his writings. He later took his writing skills to the studio, recording several Reggae albums under the alias “Carl I.” His debut album was called 'Keep My Fire Burnin.''

    Although the concentration of Black Music Magazine was Reggae music and the meaning behind the sound, the 70’s publication would often feature highlights of artists like Tina Turner, the Ohio Players and Sister Sledge.
     

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