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Jimmy Cliff Information

Jimmy Cliff is an international reggae musician and actor. Cliff grew up in the Somerton District of St. James, Jamaica. He began writing music at a very young age when he was still enrolled at a primary school in St. James. In 1962, his father moved him to Kingston where Cliff began studying at a technical school. At this same time, Cliff was trying to get his music heard. He was constantly approaching producers and even entered several talent shows to showcase his music. When he was fourteen years old, Cliff experienced his big break and recorded his debut single, “Hurricane Hattie.” This song was produced by Leslie Kong. Kong continued to produce Cliff’s song until his own death in 1971. Thereafter, Cliff continued to record his first singles such as “Miss Jamaica” and “King of Kings.” Cliff really rose to international fame, however, with the movie, The Harder They Came. The Harder They Came is a cult classic and examines a singer struggling in the slums of Kingston. Cliff starred in this movie and also produced most of the soundtrack for the movie. Because this movie became so internationally famous, it really helped reveal reggae to wider audience. More recently, in 2010, Cliff was inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. He is also the only living musician to hold the Order of Merit which the highest honor that can be bestowed by Jamaican government for achievement in arts and sciences.