Deep Dive: An AllMusicBooks Podcast

“Episode 58: The Harder They Come” with Roger Steffens

July 26, 2021

In 1972, director Perry Henzell released the film “The Harder They Come.” Its story revolves around a rural Jamaican musician who journeys to the city of Kingston in search of fame and fortune. Ivan, the central character is played by a young Jimmy Cliff. The film was an immediate hit in Jamaica and eventually the US via midnight shows, running weeks and sometimes years in some cities.

Reggae historian Roger Steffens joins us to talk about this highly influential film, which turns fifty next year! We’ll also discuss the soundtrack that features Cliff, Toots and The Maytals, Desmond Decker and many others, and would virtually establish reggae music outside of Jamaica. Join us!


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