Tony Rebel, OD, remains at the vanguard of a musical trend he inspired over 20 years ago- his conviction and ingenuity to depart from the conventional approach to Jamaican popular music; whilst promoting the idea of righteousness and a code of honour, through reggae, is what has set this rebel apart!
A REBEL IS BORN
Patrick Barrett aka Tony Rebel was born on January 15, 1962. He first caught public attention in 1984 and 1985 winning the premier DJ competition in Manchester, (the parish of his birth), by using a gritty yet melodic style that bridged the gap between the Reggae and Dancehall genre, a style that would eventually become known to the world as, Sing-Jaying.
However, his official sojourn into the music business didn’t come until 1991, when he released the smash hit, “Fresh Vegetable”, on the Penthouse Label.
Drawing on his formative experiences in the verdant hills of Manchester, Jamaica- where many of his age turned to the soil to make a living; a young Papa Tony, as he was then known; realized just how much time and attention it would take before his musical aspirations would bear fruit or in the Rebel’s case, vegetables.
In 1988 he and then fellow aspiring artiste; the late Garnet Silk, took a taxi to Kingston with the intention of reaping all of the hard work they intended to sow.
After two years of emoting songs such as: “Sweet Jamaica”, “Nazarite Vow” and Armour”. The rebel began his rise- when Colombia Records came to harvest his talent.
Noting his enigmatic and creative writing and delivery, Tony was prolific during his
years at Colombia: double featuring on the Grammy nominated “Stir-It-Up” compilation,
achieving certified Gold Status with the “Cool Runnings” soundtrack. 1991 saw Tony
team up with Motown artiste Queen Latifah on their billboard busting single, “Weekend
Love.” His album “Vibes of the Times” shot straight to # 1 on the CMJ charts.
A REBEL LEADS THE CAUSE
In a career that spans; two decades -10 albums, several compilations and 14 years of promoting a spiritual renaissance within reggae. Tony rebel is on his way to becoming a reggae mogul. Not just a musician, but also as a producer; with his studio, Flames production, nearing the final stages of completion. His most tangible success to date however: has come as the promoter of “Rebel Salute.”
The embodiment of practice what you preach Tony Rebel makes lifestyle music, and music that styles lives. His annual conscious music showcase, “Rebel Salute”, is the largest of’ its kind in the Caribbean. Yet still observes its founding principles of no meat and no alcohol, 15 years after its inception. The continued success of Rebel Salute is a signpost that the path Tony Rebel had chosen all those years ago was the right one.
THE HONOURED REBEL
Tony Rebel’s contributions within the national and international music circles have not gone unnoticed, lauded today as a leader in Jamaica’s “cultural revolution” Patrick Barrett was awarded the Order of Distinction from the Government of Jamaica in 2002.
His social consciousness has led him to venture into areas of volunteerism honouring a complete schedule of; motivational speaking, charity performances and work on various social agenda committee’s. His selection by UNICEF, as chair for the ‘Artistes against AIDS’ campaign, seemed a natural step in his humanitarian efforts. His prayer “Peace love and unity” was adopted as the theme music for Jamaican general elections in 1997. whilst “Jah by my side” a monster success re-recorded in French and Spanish, was the official theme music for the Reggae Boyz run to the world cup at France 98.
However it was the United Nations International search for a theme song that earned the Rebel the personal commendations of then general secretary Kofi Annan. The “Not all about the money” global song search selected Tony Rebel’s music to launch the international year of the volunteer in 2001.
THE REBOLUTION CONTINUES
Tony Rebel the progenitor of the sing jay style remains contemporary without sacrificing class. Today the Rebel sings for the acceptance of personal responsibility-self realization and determination. His themes:- The pursuit of self awareness and the knowledge that the trials of life are there to be conquered. Infuse his first album release in 6 years- I Rebel; with a musical maturity unmatched in reggae.
The Rebel revels in his musical manifesto with the latest album I REBEL – an induction into the rebel lifestyle. He even shares a track entitled “music” with action star turned musician Steven Segal. This collaboration is apt, in that Tony Rebel brings music to action. The Album is
a musical map along the path less travelled; the path of the free thinker, the path of the Rebel!
• 2007- I Rebel, Flames Production Inc. /Island Entertainment
• 2001- Realms of a Rebel, Ras
• 1997- Jah Is By My Side, VP
• 1993 – Vibes of the Time, Columbia
• 1992 – Rebellious, Ras
• 1992 – Rebel with a Cause, Penthouse
• 1992 — Connection, Next Music
• 1999- Collectors Series Vol. 2, Penthouse
• 1998- Collectors Series Vol. 1, Penthouse
• 1991- Cool Running’s Soundtrack, Columbia
• 1996- Lalibela, Flames Productions