Marcia Griffiths (right) with the I Threes
|Birth name||Marcia Llyneth Griffiths|
23 November 1949 |
|Associated acts||The Wailers
Bob and Marcia
Marcia Llyneth Griffiths (born 23 November 1949) is a successful Jamaican female singer, also called the "Queen of Reggae". One reviewer described her by noting "she is known primarily for her strong, smooth-as-mousse love songs and captivating live performances".
Born in West Kingston, Jamaica, Griffiths started her career in 1964, performing on stage with Byron Lee and the Dragonaires at the behest of Phillip James of The Blues Busters, who had heard her singing in her home neighbourhood. Her performance was sufficiently impressive that the following day Ronnie Nasralla and Clement Dodd both offered her recording contracts. She chose to record for Dodd's Studio One label, where she recorded a series of duets with male singers such as Tony Gregory ("You're Mine"), Bob Marley ("Oh My Darling"), Jeff Dixon ("Words"), and Bob Andy ("Always Together"), with whom she would have a relationship lasting several years. In 1968 she had her first success as a solo artist, with "Feel Like Jumping", which like her other early Studio One solo hits (including "Truly" and "Melody Life"), were written by Andy.
Between 1974 and 1981 she was a member of the I Threes, a trio of backing singers, which supported Bob Marley & the Wailers. She continued to record as a solo artist throughout the 1970s, working with producers such as Sonia Pottinger, and Joseph Hoo Kim.
Her 1989 re-recording of the Bunny Wailer song "Electric Boogie," originally released in 1976, made the Electric Slide, a line dance, an international dance craze. It reached number 51 on the US Billboard Hot 100, making it her most successful single. It remains the highest-selling single by a female reggae singer of all time. She has more recently had further hits with producer Donovan Germain.
In January 2014 she announced that as part of her fifitieth year in the music business she would be releasing an album of cover versions, Songs That Inspire Me, Songs I Love to Sing, recorded with Germain.
- Sweet Bitter Love (1974)
- Naturally (1978)
- Steppin (1979)
- Rock My Soul (1984)
- Marcia (1988)
- Carousel (1990)
- Indomitable (1995)
- Land Of Love (1997)
- Collectors Series (1998)
- Truly (1998)
- Certified (1999)
- Reggae Max (2003)
- Shining Time (2005)
- Melody Life (2007)
- Marcia Griffiths & Friends (2012)
- "Biography by Roger Steffens". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- Other sources, e.g. Campbell-Livingston (2012), state that she was 61 in 2012, while the Gleaner article from January 2014 states that she was aged nine in 1964.
- Campbell-Livingston, Cecelia (2012), "Truly outstanding: Looking at the amazing career of Marcia Griffiths", Jamaica Observer, 3 October 2012. Retrieved 11 October 2012.
- "Marcia Griffiths Enjoys 50 Of The Best", Jamaica Gleaner, 26 January 2014. Retrieved 26 January 2014
- Richard Burnett, "Reggae queen Marcia Griffiths on Bob Marley and the role of women in reggae", Montreal Gazette, 16 May 2013.
- Campbell-Livingston, Cecelia (2013), "Marcia Griffiths's musical journey for docu-film", Jamaica Observer, 12 December 2013. Retrieved 26 December 2013.
- Morgan, Simone (2014), "Marcia hails heroes", Jamaica Observer, 28 January 2014. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
- Campbell, Howard (2014), "Marcia Griffiths to receive Order of Distinction", Jamaica Observer, 7 August 2014. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
- Marvin Sparks, "Marcia Griffiths remembers Bob Marley on 30th anniversary of passing | Interview", Soul Culture, 11 May 2011.