Jamaican Music

Listen the History of Jamaican Music: The Tennors

The Tennors…
The Tennors were a vocal group at the forefront of changing times and styles. As Ska started to lose it’s influence with younger people, the horns and bop influenced solos began to move to the background. Vocals gained a new prominence. This very status was key in the ‘new’ music’s ability to talk to the ghetto kids of the era. To have their existence and identity confirmed by the lyrics sung by singers predominantely their own age and, generally, from the same West Kingston neighbourhoods was paramount. The new wave of vovalists and harmony groups included the Gaylads, Clarendonians, Ethiopians, Wailers, Melodians, Techniques, Desmond Dekker and the Aces, Alton Ellis and the Flames and…the Tennors. Clive Murphy and Alvin ‘Cheng Cheng’ started as a duo, singing Ska tunes along with the legendary Skatalites, amoung others. By 1965, with Alvin on the move, Clive teamed up with Maurice ‘Prof’ Johnson and the Tennor Twins moved forward. In 1967, with Ska but a memory and Rock Steady all the ‘rage’, Norman Davis was invited to join in and these 3 men became the original Tennors. Their first record, a ‘Studio One’ production, was Jamaica’s biggest hit of the year…’Pressure and Slide’. Unfortunately ‘Prof’ passed away and Clive subsequently invited Milton Wilson to join the group. ‘Give Me Bread, Gee Whiz, Ride You Donkey, and Cleopatra’ were some of the Tennor’s biggest successes at that time. When Norman Davis left to go-it solo, enter Ronnie Davis…and the hits just kept on coming…’The Stage, Another Scorcher, Weather Report’, and the 1973 ‘Festival’ winner ‘Hopeful Village’. Listen Now

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