The 45-rpm seven-inch single is at the heart of reggae music, the main vehicle by which reggae music has been communicated to the public by the deejays in the dancehalls of Kingston, and to its worldwide audience beyond. Ever since the birth of the Jamaican music industry, over 60 years ago, and through to the present day, these idiosyncratic label designs have helped illustrate, signify and energize the music they accompany.
Reggae Soundsystem 45! features 1,000 stunning 45-rpm single designs, reproduced full size, that span the history of reggae music. These label designs give us a hidden history in album design that is raw, innovative and hip.
Published in tandem with the album-size Reggae Soundsystem!, the book includes a fascinating essay on the birth and rise of the 45-rpm single in reggae music by Steve Barrow, author of Rough Guide to Reggae and founder of the reggae label Blood & Fire. The book is edited by Soul Jazz founder Stuart Baker.