Alpha Blondy Cocody Rock!!! on LP
Alpha Blondy's upbringing is as rich and diverse as his music. Hailing from the Ivory Coast, Alpha Blondy was born to a Muslim mother and a Christian father and brought up by a grandmother who taught him to love everyone. He always raised awareness about social injustice and aimed to promote unity in his lyrics and in real life, which eventually led him to become the Ambassador for Peace for the UNESCO, NATO and CEDEAO.
The singer grew up listening to African folkloric music, but was influenced by American bands like Pink Floyd, Jimmy Hendrix, The Beatles, Creedence Clearwater Revival and Otis Redding. He was introduced to Bob Marley's music when he moved to New York to study English at Hunter College and in Columbia University's American Language Program. After a brief stint in Paris to record his 1984 album Cocody Rock!!!, he headed to Jamaica to record the title track with Marley's backing group, The Wailers.
Following the release of Cocody Rock!!!, Blondy embarked upon a hectic tour schedule, performing extensively throughout West Africa. The singer's high-energy shows proved an enormous success, hundreds of teenage reggae fans packing out stadiums across the region to groove to Ivory Coast's leading reggae-man.