The roots of Lovers Rock lie in the early days of reggae, with Jamaican and American singers such as Ken Boothe, Johnny Nash, and John Holt enjoying international hits with reggae versions of well-known love songs.
A style suited to the London reggae scene, Lovers rock represented an apolitical counterpoint to the conscious Rastafariansound dominant in Jamaica at the time. It combined the smooth soul sounds of Chicago and Philadelphia soul with reggae basslines and rhythms. Rooted in the Sound systems of South London, the style had particular appeal amongst women and produced many female stars including Carroll Thompson, and Louisa Mark, who aged 14 was the first British artist to have a lovers rock hit with her version of Bobby Parker's "Caught You in a Lie" in 1975, which was followed by Ginger Williams' "Tenderness". The husband and wife production team of Dennis and Eve Harris then had a big hit with T.T. Ross's "Last Date", and Dennis Harris then set up a new label, Lovers Rock, along with John Kpiaye and Dennis Bovell, which gave the new genre a name.