Entertainment

Uzziah 'Sticky' Thompson dies

BY HOWARD CAMPBELL Observer senior writer

Wednesday, August 27, 2014    

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PERCUSSIONIST Uzziah 'Sticky' Thompson, who played on a number of groundbreaking songs in a 50-year career, died Monday in Florida.

His son, Audley Shakespeare, says Thompson died from a heart attack.

Thompson, who was 78, first made his name as a deejay on songs like the Skatalites' Guns of Navarone. The Techniques' ska number, Little Did You Know, was the first hit song he played.

He went on to work for five years with producer Lee 'Scratch' Perry, playing on The Wailers' Soul Rebel and Duppy Conqueror and Beat Down Babylon by Junior Byles.

The Hanover-born Thompson was a member of the Revolutionaries, house band at Channel One, during the 1970s. There, he played on countless songs including I Need a Roof (The Mighty Diamonds), Up Park Camp (John Holt) and War by the Wailing Souls.

Drummer Sly Dunbar, a member of the Revolutionaries, said Thompson was "one of the steadiest percussionists to work with".

"He had great tempo... Sticky was always happy when him in the studio," Dunbar added.

Dunbar and his musical partner, bassist Robbie Shakespeare, worked with Thompson on countless sessions. Some of them produced Gregory Isaacs' Soon Forward, Bull Inna The Pen (Black Uhuru) and Pull Up To The Bumper by Grace Jones.

Thompson later became a member of Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers' recording and touring team. He played on the group's Grammy-winning albums One Bright Day and Conscious Party.

Uzziah 'Sticky' Thompson is survived by his wife Sharon, five children and a brother.

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