As one of Jamaica’s most recognized and beloved voices, it may come as a surprise that international media (with Rolling Stone being an exception) rarely recognize Beres Hammond OJ within the same rank as Bob Marley, as an important asset to Reggae music.

His trademark grin and velvety smooth vocals have been a staple on Jamaica’s entertainment scene for decades, check out “10 things you didn’t know about Beres Hammond” courtesy of Loop lifestyle.

  1. He was born in a small community in Annotto Bay in St. Mary, Jamaica on August 28, 1955
  2. The ninth of ten children, he recalls his mother as a “person around the house” while his father worked as a councillor
  3. He thinks crooners Alton Ellis and Ken Boothe are exceptional artistes
  4. He recorded his first song at age 12 with family friend Clancy Eccles
  5. His first big break came when he auditioned for the Winston ‘Merritone’ Blake to be part of an amateur talent series. A few days later he performed in Half Way Tree to an overwhelmingly positive response from the crowd
  6. In 1975, Hammond was drawn into Zap Pow, an experimental group with a vibrant horn section that based their sound on progressive jazz. At the time he was known as a soul and pop balladeer
  7. Tragedy struck for his household in the late 1980s when robbers invaded his house and tied up everybody and rolled them in sheets. He described the harrowing incident saying: “they wanted to kill me, and I had to talk myself out of it. The guy put a pillow over my head, and I had to find something quick to distract them.”
  8. His chart topping hit Tempted to Touch was partially inspired by dancehall artiste and restaurateur Patra
  9. Barbadian born recording artiste Rihanna coyly addressed her rekindled relationship with Chris Brown in 2012 by tweeting lyrics to Hammond’s They Gonna Talk
  10. His real name is Hugh Beresford Hammond