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Ernest Ranglin


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(1932 – present)

Ernest Ranglin (born June 19, 1932) is a famous Jamaican guitarist.

As a child, Ranglin played , then guitar in his teen years. Charlie Christian was an early influence. Ranglin played on many classic recordings, with Jimmy Cliff, Monty Alexander, Prince Buster, The Skatalites, and others. Ranglin toured extensively with the Eric Deans Orchestra, one of the top bands in the .

In 1958, Chris Blackwell recorded a Ranglin single; it was the first Island Records release. Later recordings in the late 1950s and early 1960s are often regarded as important in the early development of . In 1964, Ranglin, with Coxsone Dodd and singer Millie recorded “My Boy Lollipop”, the first Jamaican song to achieve international success.

Some credit Ranglin with the invention of the of guitar play (sometimes known as scratching) found in nearly all Ska music.

Ranglin has continued recording, often blending with . In 1997, Ranglin was reunited with the Skatalites, for the album Ball Of Fire.


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