Courtland "Gizmo" White

COURTLAND "Gizmo" White, the veteran guitarist who played with Black Uhuru, Kotch, Raging Fyah, and the ATF bands, died in Kingston January 26 at age 69.

Stephen Lee, drummer of the ATF Band, confirmed his passing but did not disclose a cause of death.

He described the easy-going White as the consummate team player.

"Gizmo was a great man, never have no quarrel with anyone. Always happy," he said.

In a 2017 interview with the Jamaica Observer, White said he began playing the guitar in the early 1970s. He pointed to Ernie Ranglin, Carlos Santana, and Eric Gale as his biggest influences.

"Santana for his Latin rock styles; Ernest Ranglin for jazz and mento styles; and Eric Gale for his soul-Caribbean styles. These three guitar players have a very unique style... When you hear them playing, you know right away it's them," said White.

When he joined Raging Fyah in 2006 White had clocked countless hours as a session and touring musician with acts like Black Uhuru and Kotch as well as in bands on the North Coast. Recently, he was part of a band that accompanied roots-reggae legend, The Abyssinians to Europe.

In 2017 Raging Fyah's Everlasting was nominated for Best Reggae Album at the Grammy Awards, which White considered one of the high points of his career.

"To be nominated is a joy. To know that our work is recognised by this board, it only shows hard work does pay off," he said.

In 2018 White left Raging Fyah and joined the ATF Band which also included Lee and keyboardist Herbie Harris, his bandmates from Kotch. The following year he played on Yardie, the quartet's EP.

Last year White played on their Collie Weed, a reggae slant/cover of Seals And Croft's 1972 hit single, Summer Breeze.

Courtland "Gizmo" White
Howard Campbell

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