Reggae great, Toots Hibbert dies at 77

by September 12th, 2020

Tributes continue to flood social media following the passing of Reggae great Toots Hibbert, of the legendary Reggae Band, Toots and Maytals.

Toots died on Friday night at the University Hospital of the West Indies.

On Friday night, the remaining members of Toots and the Maytals posted a statement on Twitter. “It is with the heaviest of hearts to announce that Fredrick Nathaniel Toots Hibbert passed away peacefully tonight, surrounded by his family at the University Hospital of the West Indies in Kingston Jamaica.

It further reads, “The family and his management team would like to thank the medical teams and professionals for their care and diligence, and ask that you respect their privacy during their time of grief.”

While on Instagram, Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness wrote, “Today I mourn with all Jamaicans as we woke to news of the passing of our very own legendary Fredrick ‘Toots’ Hibert from the iconic band, Toots and the Maytals. The PM said Toots added significant value to Brand Jamaica, and he will be remembered as one of Jamaica’s best musical talents.

Other tributes for Toots Hibbert on social media came from Ziggy Marley, Sean Paul, Shaggy, Bounty Killer, Morgan Heritage, Agent Sasco, Tarrus Riley, and countless others.

CNN, USA Today, TMZ, and the BBC are some of the international media outlets who covered the passing Toots Hibbert, Jamaica’s Reggae Ambassador, and leader of the Toots and the Maytals.

The Jamaican cultural icon recently participated in the island’s annual Festival Song competition which he won three times. On August 28, Toots Hibbert released his last album titled, ‘Got To Be Tough.’

Toots had been consistently touring with his band, the Maytals, since the early 1970s, when his landmark album Funky Kingston (one of the greatest reggae albums of all time) made him a global superstar opening for the Who and the Eagles. He and his band won the Grammy Award for best reggae album in 2005.

Formed in the 1960s, his band Toots and the Maytals helped popularise reggae music. The group’s 1968 single Do The Reggay was the first song to use the word “reggae” naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience.

The group’s popular songs include Monkey Man, Sweet And Dandy, Bam Bam, and Pomps And Pride.

In 2012, Toots Hibbert was awarded an Order of Distinction for his contribution to Jamaica’s music.

He was 77-years old.