Earl Moodie dies at 69Saturday, September 18, 2021
BY HOWARD CAMPBELL
Earl Moodie, proprietor of the landmark Moodie's Records store in the Bronx, died in New York City yesterday. His son, Earl Jr, confirmed his death at age 69.
He did not disclose the cause of death but said his father had been ill for some time.
The elder Moodie, who was originally from Papine in St Andrew, migrated to New York in 1969. For most of his life in the United States, he was involved in the music business.
In the early 1970s, he was lead singer of The Stepping Stones, a reggae band that played the club scene in the Bronx and Brooklyn. Before he started Moodie's, he also worked at Brad's Records, another Bronx-based store that was one of the leading retail reggae outlets in the United States.
Located at White Plains Road, Moodie's Records was the go-to spot for many years for the latest in reggae or hard-to-find songs from the rocksteady or roots-reggae eras.
It was also a hangout for Jamaicans in the music business, especially those who lived in New York City.
“I met Earl in the early '70s during my New York years and simply put, he was one of the nicest human beings one could get to know. He was so positive and soft-spoken and never knew how to say no. He always tried to see the best in his fellow men, which was also one of his outstanding traits,” Michael Barnett, who lived in the Big Apple for many years and was a good friend of Moodie, told the Jamaica Observer. They were also colleagues at Brad's and shared a passion for Jamaican music.
“I remember very well when he started his entertainment career as a solo singer about 1970, and graduated to become lead vocalist for the New York reggae band Stepping Stones which also had renowned music producer Tad Dawkins as drummer/vocalist.”
Barnett added that Moodie's contribution to the development of reggae and Jamaican culture in New York City is immeasurable.
Earl Moodie is survived by 10 children, grandchildren and one brother.