Definition of mento in English:


nounPlural mentos

mass noun
  • A style of Jamaican folk music based on a traditional dance rhythm in duple time.

    • ‘It reflects a moment in which Jamaican pop music was synthesising Black R&B and West Indian mento music.’
    • ‘The mento that graced the first Jamaican recordings of the early 1950s mixed an indigenous folk style with elements of Trinidadian calypso.’
    • ‘Jamaica's musical past goes far beyond reggae: There's the warm rhythms of mento, the sweet sway of calypso, the jittery jump of ska.’
    • ‘Passengers are usually greeted in ‘Love Boat ‘style by an old mento or calypso band and dancers.’’
    • ‘The venerable Jolly Boys, often tagged as the Jamaican Buena Vista Social Club, have devoted their long careers to keeping mento alive and vibrant with their bongos, banjos and kalimba.’


Early 20th century: of unknown origin.