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Productions

The Sounds of America: The Harder They Come Soundtrack

BMPAudio March 29, 2021


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Released in 1972, The Harder They Come was the first Jamaican feature film. It starred unknown Jamaican actors and was directed by Jamaica native, Perry Henzell. It is often recognized as the movie that popularized reggae music around the world. The soundtrack to The Harder They Come includes a handful of original songs by the film’s star, Jimmy Cliff, plus a mix of songs from artists now recognized as icons of the genre, including Toots and the Maytals and Desmond Dekker.

On this installment of The Sounds of America:  

Jimmy Cliff confesses to be a Rude Boy, Island Records’ Chris Blackwell remembers Toots Hibbert, the director’s daughter, Justine Henzell, shares her father’s story, while reggae poet and professor Kwame Dawes helps create context for the music.

In March 2021, the soundtrack album for The Harder They Come was inducted into the National Recording Registry. Since 2006, BMP Audio has profiled entrants into the Registry, creating profiles of music recordings, sports broadcasts, comedy albums, and more.

Our Peabody Award-Winning Series is produced by Ben Manilla and Jennie Cataldo.

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