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Died On This Date (October 19, 2014) John Holt / Reggae Great

Posted by themusicsover on October 19, 2014

Winston “John” Holt
July 11, 1947 – October 19, 2014

john-holtJohn Holt was a respected reggae singer and songwriter who began his career by performing at talent shows in an around Kingston as far back as 12 years old.  After winning upwards of two dozen of these contests, Holt recorded his fist single, “Forever I’ll Stay,” for the great Leslie Kong.  The year was 1963, and two years later, he joined a band that would eventually become the Paragons, one of reggae’s biggest acts during the golden age of mid ’60s rocksteady.  During that period, Holt wrote one of the band’s best known hits, “The Tide Is High,” which became a worldwide smash for Blondie in 1980.  After the Paragons disbanded in 1970, Holt went on to have a successful solo career becoming one of Jamaica’s biggest stars of the ’70s.  His hits included “Stick By Me,” “Help Me Make It Through The Night,” and “Touch Me In The Morning.”  Holt released more than 40 albums and toured regularly throughout his career.  In 2004, he was recognized with the Order Of Distinction by the Jamaican government for his contribution to the island’s music.  In June of 2014, Holt was diagnosed with colon cancer and fell ill in August.  He was 67 when he passed away on October 19, 2014.

 

Thanks to Harold Lepidus at Bob Dylan Examiner for the assist.

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