RIP Tots Hibbert, reggae pioneer

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Frederick Nathaniel Hibbert – known To regain fans worldwide By their stage name, Tots- has died. One of the pioneers of reggae music, and one of the longest and hardest working artists in the music world, Tots Hibbert won Grammys, inspiring generations to embrace the reggae sound, And helped put Jamaican music on the map in the mid-20th century. He died this week at the age of 77, from complications of COVID-19.

Born in Jamaica – and orphaned at a young age – joined Hibbert Ralphus “Raley” Gordon and Nathaniel “Jerry” Matthias Mayals (later Tots and the Metal) In 1962, launching a band that would one day beAs a critic Robert Christgau wrote “Beatles to the Velars Rolling Stones.” Originally a vocal trio, the band continuously added instruments to their lineup, winning the Jamaica Independence Festival Popular Song Contest in 1966 with “Bum Bum” (a feat they would repeat twice in the future). The group spent the rest of the decade consolidating their place at the helm of Jamaican music, including the 1968 hit films, “Track the Regge,” a track Took a name for a popular dance style At that time And lending it to a whole genre of music.

That national stardom was translated into international success in 1969., When the band’s “Monkey Man” crossed over to the UK and became a much-covered, widely loved hit. Overwhelmed by ska and punk scenes, the band performed more hit songs with songs like “Funky Kingston”; He also gained American recognition after contributing to the song (and a performance) in Jimmy Cliff’s soundtrack the harder They Come.

And when the Maytals broke up in 1980 (for nearly a decade), Hibbert never stopped performing, employing His voice and talent as a multipleInstrument for maintaining music. He also showed a marked interest for the collaboration, working closely with all the groups that were influenced by Meytel in the first place – in particular for the greatest hits collection true love In 2004, the band remade several I.E.Greatest hits with everyone from Eric Clapton to The Roots to No Doubt. (Scoring the 2005 Grammy Band for the best reggae album in the process.)

For Hibbert himself, he continued to tour and perform well in the most recent decade The Tonight Show In 2018, and with an event starting in 2021 as the band’s “Final Tour”, one of the most happening events of his later career was back in 2013, when he was beheaded by a vodka bottle Was killed by a participant in the show. After suffering “extreme anxiety, memory loss, headaches, dizziness and, most sadly, fear of congestion” after the incident. Still wrote a letter Asking the judge in the case to approve the defendant, writing, “He is a young man, and I have heard what happens to young people in prison. My own pain and suffering will increase knowing that this young man will face that possibility. ”

In August Hibbert was reportedly put into a medically induced coma; A post on Maytals’ Facebook page announced today that he had died.