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Posts Tagged ‘Byron Lee’

Died On This Date (January 19, 2012) Winston Riley / Jamaican Musician & Producer

Posted by themusicsover on January 19, 2012

Winston Riley
1946 – January 19, 2012

Winston Riley was an influential and pioneering reggae musician, singer, and producer.  Born in Kingston, Riley was just 16 when he formed his first group, the Techniques.  The vocal outfit went on to work with such producers as Byron Lee and Duke Reid before splitting up in 1968.  It was then that Riley formed his own record label and began producing other artists.  Over the next several years, he worked with the likes of the Escorts, Alton Ellis, and Johnny Osbourne.  One of his early productions, 1971’s “Double Barrel” as recorded by Dave and Ansel Collins, is considered one of Jamaica’s first international hits for reaching #1 on both the British and Dutch charts.  In fact, Riley is widely considered one of the first people to introduce reggae to England.  He also produced one of reggae’s most influential albums, the 1979 General Echo release, The Slackest.  The list of artists who can give Riley some credit for their success includes Gregory Isaacs, Buju Banton, Sister Nancy, Cutty Ranks, and Frankie Paul. In August of 2011, Riley was stabbed, and then a month later, he was shot in the head.  As of the early months following the incidents, police had not apprehended any suspects nor determined motive.  On January 19, 2012, Winston Riley died of complications from the shooting.  He was 65.

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Reggae Anthology: Winston Riley - Quintessential Techniques Disc 1 - Various Artists

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Died On This Date (November 4, 2008) Byron Lee / Ska Pioneer

Posted by themusicsover on November 4, 2009

Byron Lee
June 27, 1935 – November 4, 2008

ByronLee102906wf32Byron Lee was a Jamaican musician, band leader and producer who has been credited for introducing the electric bass to Jamaica.  He formed the Dragonaires in the early ’50s.  They went on to become one of the most successful and influential ska bands Jamaica has ever known.  As a producer, Lee worked with the likes of the Maytals.  He later bought a recording studio and turned it into the best of it’s kind in Jamaican, hosting the Rolling Stones and Paul Simon among other major acts.  In 2007, it became known that Lee was being treated for bladder cancer.  Although he was no longer able to perform with the Dragonaires, he continued on in a management capacity.  Byron Lee died of cancer at the age of 73.

Thanks to Craig Rosen at Number1Albums for the assist.

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Byron Lee & The Dragonaires

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