Rockers, the story of oppressed Jamaican musicians

    Originally conceived as a documentary about the late 70s scene, Rockers is a full-length feature made by Bafaloukos in Jamaica and staring a number of well-known reggae singers and musicians, from the drummer Leroy “Horsemouth” Wallace to Winston Rodney of Burning Spear, Gregory Isaacs, Big Youth and Jacob Miller.

    Shot on a budget of $250,000 and filmed in six weeks in Kingston and two weeks in Ocho Rios, Bafaloukos showed roots reggae culture at its peak before the advent of dancehall.

Nattily dressed youths in their tracksuits and Rasta tams hang out in the zinc-fenced shanties and ganja-yards of western Kingston while reggae booms from giant loudspeaker cabinets.

Leroy ‘Horsemouth’ Wallace, then one of Jamaica’s most celebrated drummers, moves through the Kingston ghetto and music industry in search of his stolen motorbike, bought as part of his record distribution business.

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The soundtrack has been a reggae classic since it was released. Some of the songs from the soundtrack including Tenement Yard, Slave Master, Jah No Dead, and Graduation In Zion.

Rockers is a movie where we can watch the artists who make the music and there’s such a comfortable feeling you get when watching Rockers, because we’re witnessing these musicians in their natural environment.

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Rockers (1980)
Writer-director: Ted Bafaloukos
Producer: Patrick Hulsey
Cast: (Each member portrays himself)
Leroy “Horsemouth” Wallace
Richard “Dirty Harry” Hall
Gregory Isaacs
Jacob Miller
Robbie Shakespeare
Frank “Kiddus I” Dowding
Winston “Burning Spear” Rodney
Manley “Big Youth” Buchanan
Lester “Dillinger” Bullocks


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Source: Vogue

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