John Holt is dead

John Holt is dead

Monday, October 20, 2014

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VETERAN reggae singer John Holt died in a London hospital yesterday. He was 69.

Copeland Forbes, Holt’s manager since 2006, confirmed the entertainer’s passing.

"John died at 2:40 am English time. His [John’s] nephew informed of his death," Forbes told the Jamaica Observer.

The cause of death is yet to be confirmed.

Forbes said Holt did an operation at the University Hospital of West Indies in June and went to England the following month for a series of shows. Holt is one of reggae's most influential singers.

He had a remarkable career with the Paragons during the rocksteady era of the late-1960s.

His solo career is just as impressive. He recorded hits for producers Clement Dodd, Bunny Lee and Joseph Hoo Kim in the 1970s, as well as the classic album 1000 Volts of Holt, a big seller in the United Kingdom. His hits include Stick by Me and Only a Smile.

He was awarded the Order of Distinction, Jamaica's fifth highest honour, in 2004. Holt is survived by his wife, Merl.

– Brian Bonitto

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