[Event] Nov 17 Colloquium - The Far East Sound in Jamaica

November 12, 2021

Berkeley Geography
Fall 2021 Colloquium
November 17 | 3:30pm | 575 McCone

The Far East Sound in Jamaica

Andrew F. Jones

Department of East Asian Languages, UC Berkeley


This paper revolves around a cohort of Hakka Chinese entrepreneurs, record producers, and musicians who played an important role in shaping Jamaican music in the 1960s and 1970s. Chinese-Jamaican producers like Clive Chin, Herman Chin-Loy, and Joseph Hoo-Kim not only recorded and marketed some of the first examples of the vastly influential and innovative genre of studio remixes known as dub music, but also contributed to the rise of a new and historically plangent subgenre in reggae called the "far east sound." My presentation will explore how "China" sounded in the seemingly unlikely setting of a newly independent Afro-Caribbean Island nation, and what this genre of music might tell us about imperial geographies, migrations of labor and capital, music technology, and the sonic shaping of a postcolonial “home.”