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The jamaican artist named Ronald Merrills, better known as Judah Eskender Tafari, is without a doubt worthy of the titles Legend and Superstar. His multitalented career ranges from singer, songwritter, composer, producer, guitarist and bassist.

Coxsone Dodd released six classic songs with Judah Eskender Tafari: 'Jah Light', 'Rastafari Tell You', 'Always Trying', 'Conquer Me', 'Danger In Your Eyes' and 'Just Another Day' a 12", from 1978 till 1980, the first of which was the magnificent 'Jah Light'. He was then due to release an album, 'African Blood', which never appeared.

Judah first learned to play the guitar and only wanted to play the guitar, and while playing the guitar he started backing up singers and started to sing harmonies, and automatically he started doing his own singing and started making one or two songs. Being a part of the Twelve Tribes Of Israel over the years inspired him to write more meaningful songs towards people.
He sang for the Twelve Tribes of Israel organization from 1976 untill 1978 whe he was brought to Coxsone Dodd for recording with intent toward releases.

His introduction to Coxsone was through the bass player Bagga Walker and Pablove Black who are also members of the Twelve Tribes. Bagga Walker and Pablove Black were the bass and the keyboardist at Studio One at the time. Coxsone never had any doubt in Judah because both Bagga Walker and Pablove Black are very good musicians, so he put Judah straight in the studio, and singles were quickly released.


He did a few covers and countless originals . A total of sixteen to eighteen songs were recorded in the two years period from 1978-1980.

 

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Following his involvement with Studio One, Judah continued in the Jamaican music industry as Bass player for the Generation Gap band.

Judah had since recorded on albums as bassist. The first project was put together by Jah Love Music's manager - Mr. Belcher. He wanted to do an album with Brigadier Jerry (Jamaica Jamaica). He chose the musicians, and he called on Judah to play the bass. From over the years however, backing up singers Judah decided that singing is his thing, because he never really enjoyed backing up singers as much he enjoyed singing. Judah says that in singing, the feeling that he gets, he doesn't get from anything else.

In December of 1986, Judah came to America for the first time, and shortly after recorded about 5 songs for Jeff Sarge of 91.1 FM in New Jersey who was a cultural radio personality at the time.

Since then Judah has traveled throughout the world including Africa and played with numerous bands either as Lead singer, guitarist or bass player.

He recorded an album for Gussie P in England circa 1993 which was released and still seeing singles release from that recording session till this day.

Recently Judah has recorded and released music through the Twelve Tribes of Israel and also with some of the current Roots and Dubwise producers throughout Europe and America.
Of those recent releases a string of hits appearing on the Black Redemption label have created a huge interest in Judah Eskender Tafari as a recording artist and for live performances.

In the New York City Roots scene, The Black Redemption Sounds of Praises live sessions with selector Ras Kush, featuring Judah Eskender Tafari on vocals, has been greatly received to the point where their live dvd and cd recordings have been copied and distributed world wide as a roots and culture music phenomenon. This has made the USA a place of interest for this locally developed scene with Judah Eskender Tafari singing and sounding better then ever!

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