REGGAE DONE GONE NOW (Toots Hibbert, R.I.P.)

I don’t have anything like the energy to pay a just tribute to Toots Hibbert, leader of the Maytals, who passed away while I was in the hospital on Sept. 11.  Suffice it to say he came as close to defining reggae as any one man could, right down to naming it on his 1968 hit “Do the Reggay” and making its greatest record (see below).

I confess I never heard the strong resemblance to Otis Redding often noted by others. But Toots was as central to the soul of Kingston as Otis was to the soul of Memphis and I trust they are finally playing that killer double-bill we never got to hear in this place in some better land tonight.

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