last update: 03-04-2011
|Born Hugh Beresford Hammond, 28 August 1955, Annotto Bay, Saint Mary, Jamaica, Beres Hammond
is a reggae singer known in particular for his romantic lovers rock and soulful voice.
While his career began in the 1970s, he reached his greatest success in the 1990s.
Born the ninth of ten children; Beres grew up listening to his father's collection of
American soul and jazz music, including Sam Cooke and Otis Redding. He was further influenced
by the native musics of ska and rocksteady, in particular Alton Ellis.
||Beres began participating in local talent contests from 1972 to 1973, which led to his first recording,
of Alton Ellis' "The Wanderer". In 1975 he joined the band, Zap Pow, as lead singer, leading
to the hit 1978 single "The System" under the Aquarius Records label. However, he
simultaneously sought a solo career, releasing his debut album, Soul Reggae, in 1976. His solo
ballads "One Step Ahead" (1976) and Joe Gibbs produced "I'm in Love" (1978), were both hits
in Jamaica. He left Zap Pow in 1979 to pursue his solo career, and recorded two more albums
"Let's Make A Song" in 1980 and "Red Light" in 1981. He formed Tuesday's Children, a harmony
group that toured but never recorded. Beres formed his own record label, Harmony House Records,
in 1985 for the release of his "Make a Song" album, which had two Jamaican chart-toppers that
were influenced by the emerging dancehall style: "Groovy Little Thing" and "What One Dance Can Do".
| The latter,
produced by Willie Lindo, began to break Beres into the international market. He scored
another hit in 1986 with "Settling Down" on his eponymous release. He left his fame in Jamaica for New York in 1987, after being tied up as thieves ransacked his house during a home
invasion. There he recorded the "Have a Nice Weekend" album and the duet single
"How Can We Ease the Pain" with Maxi Priest.
|Beres returned briefly to Jamaica to record Putting Up Resistance, which was significantly
harder than his typical ballads, produced by Tappa Zukie, which spawned the hits
"Putting Up Resistance" and "Strange". He signed with Penthouse Records in 1990 and returned
to Jamaica permanently to record the dancehall smash "Tempted to Touch", with producer
Donovan Germain. This is perhaps his best known song in the United States and United Kingdom,
and set the foundation for the hits "Is This a Sign" and "Respect to You Baby" on the 1992
"A Love Affair" album. Also in 1992, Beres released the single "Fire". The song received
critical acclaim within the Reggae music industry and it was an extremely sought after
Now garnering interest from major studios such as Elektra Records, Beres
recorded five more albums in the 1990s as well as several compilations, establishing himself
as one of the top lovers rock artists. His first album of the new millennium was 2001's
"Music Is Life", which featured an appearance by Wyclef Jean, and contributions from
Earl "Chinna" Smith and Flourgon. The album spawned several hits, including "They Gonna Talk",
"Rockaway" and "Ain't It Good To Know". The 2004 release Love Has No Boundaries, had guest
spots by Buju Banton and Big Youth.
He returned to Jamaica to perform at the Opening Ceremony for the Cricket World Cup 2007.
He released yet another album in 2008, "A Moment in Time", on VP Records, which featured the
single "I Feel Good".
Ron & Henrik