Respect due to Sugar Minott

By Howard Campbell
Observer senior writer

Monday, March 11, 2019

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Whenever Sugar Minott performed in Jamaica, he often bemoaned the lack of respect he got in his country as an artiste and mentor. On March 5, Minott finally got due recognition when the government posthumously presented the singer/producer with a Reggae Gold award.

Minott died in July 2010 at age 54. Accepting the award during the Reggae Gold ceremony at the National Indoor Sports Arena in Kingston, were four of his children, including Pashon who toured with her father for several years as a backup singer.

She said he would have been elated at the government's gesture.

“Our father would be proud as he certainly felt uncredited while he was here. We also felt that based on his stellar contribution that he should also have others (awards) given to him, and we are confident that with the work that we are charged and planning to do, more posthumous awards will be achieved,” Pashon told the Jamaica Observer.

Because he died intestate, Sugar Minott's massive catalogue of albums and songs became the subject of considerable legal scrutiny. Pashon said those complications have been largely resolved and preparations are being made for his music to be available digitally through the recently launched website, SugarMinott.com.

There are other plans to revive interest in Minott's work, such as opening a museum with pieces tracing his career as a member of the African Brothers trio, to his years at Studio One and remarkable run as a hit-maker during the 1980s.

“We have started to work with curators and art designers to build a unique exhibit that will chronicle his technical and artistic innovations, in the context of the wider environment in which he participated. It will pick up from the birthday celebrations that we have been having,” Pashon explained.

Born Lincoln Minott, Sugar Minott is regarded by many artistes and producers as the “Godfather of Dancehall”. After an encouraging start to his career with the African Brothers in the early 1970s, he broke through late that decade with songs like Vanity and Mr DC for Studio One.

Minott was one of reggae's hottest acts of the 1980s. He had a big hit song in the United Kingdom in 1981 with a cover of Michael Jackson's Good Thing Going; in Jamaica, Minott had numerous chart-riders including Herbman Hustling, Lovers Race, No Vacancy and Tune In.

As a producer, he helped develop the talent of artistes like Tristan Palmer, Little John, Tenor Saw, Junior Reid, Yami Bolo, Garnet Silk and Steve Harper (aka Shalom) through his Youthman Promotions label.

For Pashon Minott, his greatest success was as a parent.

“Dad was a loving father who always expressed to his children how much he loved them. That meant everything to us, love is the greatest thing a parent can give a child and for that we are forever grateful,” she said.


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