James Chambers better known as Jimmy Cliff is a well known Jamaican musician, singer and also an actor, a man with many talents, born on the 1st of April in 1948 in St James, Jamaica. He has two kids, a daughter and a son. He began to write songs during the early stage of his life, in fact, from primary school and even entered talent shows.
By 1964, Cliff’s star was so bright that he was selected as one of Jamaica’s representatives at the World’s Fair. A successful residency in Paris followed, and Island head Chris Blackwell eventually convinced the singer to relocate to Britain. The label itself was in the process of shifting away from Jamaican music and into progressive rock, and thus Cliff began composing songs with an eye to cross over into that market.
After two singles that failed to make much impression, his career took off when “Hurricane Hattie” became a hit, while he was aged 14. It was produced by Kong, with whom Cliff remained until Kong’s death from a heart attack in 1971.
A few of his favourite hit songs are “Wonderful World, Beautiful People”, “The Harder They Come”, “Sitting in Limbo”, “You Can Get It If You Really Want” and “Many Rivers to Cross” from the soundtrack to The Harder They Come in 1972, which he gained him popularity all over the world.
Cliff played a budding singer from the Jamaican countryside that gets caught up in the renegade world of drugs and violence in the slums of Kingston. The movie became a huge success in Jamaica and a cult classic elsewhere.
He moved to London for a period to further that goal. Hard Road to Travel, his ﬁrst British album, was released in 1968, and the Top 10 success of “Wonderful World, Beautiful People” followed the next year. By 1984, Cliff returned to Jamaica, he maintained homes in Montego Bay, Kingston, and Somerton where he was born.
He continued with his eclecticism, mixing the ethics of Rastafarian life with his adoption of Muslim ideals, living between Jamaica and England, cultivating strong markets in South America, Africa, and continental Europe.Cliff returned to movies with his appearance in the 1985 comedy Club Paradise (starring Robin Williams), set in the Caribbean.
Cliff and Oneness toured with head-liner Steve Winwood in 1986. In 2004 Cliff completely reworked the songs, dropping the traditional reggae in favour of an electronic sound, for inclusion on “Black Magic.” In 2007, Cliff performed at the opening ceremony at cricket’s World Cup.
He returned to the American charts in 1993 with his cover of “I Can See Clearly Now,” from the soundtrack for Cool Running’s, which glided into the Top 20. More singles and albums followed, and the singer remained a potent musical force. In the spring and summer of 2010, Cliff embarked on an extensive tour of the U.S. and Canada.
Jimmy Cliff is well known both locally and abroad, all his songs are hits which are loved by many, songs that can be listened to when having a bad day or just relaxing.