Macka B Biography

Macka B

Macka B Biography:

Born Christopher MacFarlane on July 2, 1966, in Wolverhampton, England, Macka B grew up surrounded by the sounds of reggae, ska, and dub. When he was a child, he was first impressed by the Lord Barley sound system that was playing at a blues party next to his family home, but music was in his soul; he also played the violin and sang in the school choir.

In his early years, he began an apprenticeship at the Ever Ready battery factory, later known as Energizer, but faced layoffs when the factory closed. Following this, he started dedicating more of his time to toasting, drawing inspiration from artists such as U-Roy, I-Roy and Big Youth, but mainly Prince Far I, whose influence is evident in his music. As a practicing Rastaman, Macka B’s music is based around the religion’s political and spiritual messages, adding his trademark light and humorous touch.

Breakthrough
In 1984, he gave Mad Professor a tape recording of his work, which started a partnership and long association between producer and artist. Around the same time, a Macka B tape of him performing for Wasifa Sound System against Saxon Studio International also reached Fashion Records in London. The record label gave Macka B the opportunity to record his first solo single, “Bible Reader,” the first of three singles for the label in 1985.

Macka B’s breakthrough came with the release of his debut album, “Sign of the Times,” in 1986 on Mad Proffessor’s Ariwa label. The album connected with people and went straight to the top of the UK reggae album charts, establishing him as a leading voice in roots reggae. In 1987, the Ariwa label released his follow-up album, “We’ve Had Enough,” firming his reputation as a visionary who boldly tackled issues through his music.

Hits
With so many single and album releases, it’s hard to highlight great songs in his catalogue without listing every track. “Wha Me Eat,” a groundbreaking song that advocates for the environment and animal rights while promoting the benefits of a plant-based diet, stands out among many others. The song’s catchy melody and uplifting message have made it an anthem for health-conscious reggae fans all over the world.

Macka B’s music also gives support to the medical benefits of cannabis, as highlighted in “Medical Marijuana Card.” Through his lyrics, he advocates for the legalisation of cannabis, highlighting its therapeutic and medical benefits and challenging the societal stigma surrounding the plant in the UK.

Also, in “Never Played a 45,” a nostalgic ode to reggae’s golden era, he pays homage to the classics that have shaped reggae over the years. With its contagious groove and lyrics from the heart, “Never Played a 45” celebrates the heritage of reggae while offering a little peek into Macka B’s own musical journey.

Other standout tracks include “Rebel,” on the Zeen riddim (2014) produced by Rory Gilligan, and two releases via Kingston Express Records, “Good Day” (2016) and “Lyrical Chef (2017), all proving popular vinyl releases here in the Pauzeradio record shop.

In 2017, Macka B released his highly anticipated album “Health is Wealth,” marking a huge milestone in his career as a reggae artist. This album stands out not only for its catchy riddims and clever melodies but also for its messages promoting health, wellness, and conscious living. This album proves Macka B’s consistency in using his platform to inspire conversations and create moves towards a healthier, more harmonious world.

More recently in 2023, on the remake of the Larking About riddim, Macka B is giving “Thanks To The Ras” as stated in our review: “Macka B is paying tribute to all his cultural Rastafari forefathers who helped destigmatise the use of cannabis and drove it toward the legalisation we have seen in some parts of the world.” In the Pauzeradio reggae vinyl shop, you can purchase the album and some of the singles.

Beyond his musical contributions, he is a dedicated humanitarian. Using his platform to address issues from racial inequality and poverty to environmental causes, sustainable living and much more. Macka B continues, with compassion, to inspire positive change and upliftment for his fans on a global scale.

Inspirational pioneer
Macka B’s legacy as a roots reggae pioneer is characterised by his commitment to consciousness, cultural pride, and unique musical innovation. With his powerful mix of infectious beats and thought-provoking lyrics, he has moved dividing lines, bringing audiences together from around the world in the spirit of love, unity, and resistance, all while educating the masses with the topics in his music. As he continues to move forward as an artist, he remains a huge figure in reggae music, inspiring future generations, young and old, to uphold the principles of truth, justice, and righteousness through their own creative ventures. After 30 years he continues to tour the world with no signs of slowing down.

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Macka B Biography written by Gav Pauze / Pauzeradio PR Services (10 May 2024).

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