Tuff Gong Radio — the trio of channels, Tuff Gong Radio, Tuff Beats, and Tuff Soca operated under a partnership between SiriusXm and the Bob Marley Group of Companies — is this week celebrating its first anniversary.
On December 3 of last year, Tuff Gong Radio was launched on the SiriusXM satellite platform. The programming mandate for the channel is to bring listeners the authentic sounds of Jamaican music from its roots to the contemporary sounds of today. In addition to the wealth of music from the Marley/Tuff Gong libraries, Tuff Gong Radio's core programming includes weekly mix shows from some of the most popular on-air talents in the region including ZJ Sparks, Collin Hines, DJ Jel, and DJ Delano. Other specialty shows from Squeeze, Ghetto Youths, DJ GQ, ZJ Bruce Lee, Stone Love, Ity & Fancy Cat, and Boom Shots Crew have been a part of the line-up.
There is also Nice Time, a weekly mix show hosted and curated by chief executive officer of the Bob Marley Group of Companies Cedella Marley. This show draws from her early job as host of the weekly Tuff Gong Countdown radio show on the now-defunct Jamaica Broadcasting Corporation.
“We always knew that we wanted the voices of Jamaica's airwaves to be a part of Tuff Gong Radio. Their voices don't just bring the music, they help to bring the energy and spirit of Jamaica. Even though the focus is on the music, when you hear us talking about the music and the artistes it's important that the talk be just as authentic,” said Marley
She is pleased with the popularity of the original channel which has led to the addition of two stations Tuff Soca and Tuff Beats in March of this year
“Usually, reggae music is placed in a niche position further down the dial or in one-off shows. However, Tuff Gong Radio is actually placed in the pop group of channel listings. This shows the impact that our music truly has on a wider basis. It's an opportunity to build and expand for the future of this music,” Marley pointed out.
Tuff Gong Radio is available on SiriusXM online as well as its app. The SiriusXM's platforms collectively reach more than 150 million listeners across all categories of digital audio – music, sports, talk, and podcasts – the largest reach of any digital audio provider in North America.