9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[reg-ey] /ˈrɛg eɪ/
a style of Jamaican popular music blending blues, calypso, and rock-'n'-roll, characterized by a strong syncopated rhythm and lyrics of social protest.
Origin of reggae
< Jamaican English, respelling of reggay (introduced in the song “Do the Reggay” (1968) by Frederick “Toots” Hibbert), a dance name based on rege, *strege a dowdy or raggedy fellow; compare rege-rege ragged clothing, quarrel, row Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for reggae
  • The song's jaunty reggae beat, and a video composed entirely of happy people hugging soldiers, jars with reality.
  • He said they were the nicest guys, and he talked with them and smoked pot and sang reggae.
  • Writer tells about visiting a reggae lounge the summer before last.
  • reggae's evolution is told through music, extensive liner notes and track-by-track narratives.
  • Choose from jazz, reggae, soul or rhythm and blues to suit your tastes.
  • Discover how reggae became a worldwide phenomenon through this powerful portrait of its leading artists.
  • The country's ska, reggae and dub musical styles and influences are heard around the world.
  • He was influenced mainly by reggae, jazz and punk rock.
  • But if you're a reggae buff, you don't get many chances to hear the music's elder icons.
  • Featuring a variety of musical shows and entertainment, including reggae, ska and jazz.
British Dictionary definitions for reggae


a type of West Indian popular music having four beats to the bar, the upbeat being strongly accented
Word Origin
C20: of West Indian origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for reggae

1968, Jamaican English (first in song title "Do the Reggay" by Toots & the Maytals), perhaps [OED, Barnhart] related to rege-rege "a quarrel, protest," literally "ragged clothes," variant of raga-raga, alteration and reduplication of English rag (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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reggae in Culture
reggae [(reg-ay)]

A form of pop music that originated in Jamaica, combining elements of calypso and rhythm and blues (see blues) with a strongly accentuated offbeat. Bob Marley was the first internationally known reggae musician.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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