VIDEO: Reggae Pioneer Leonard Dillon Dies

Dillon helped usher in the ska and rocksteady musical movements.


Billboard is reporting that reggae pioneer Leonard Dillon has passed away. Dillon was the lead singer of the Ethiopians, who helped usher ska and rocksteady into the reggae-music canon. The Ethiopians' biggest hits included "Train to Skaville" and "Everything Crash." "Everything Crash" tackled issues like water rationing, power cuts and police brutality. The Ethiopians began their recording career recording for ska legend Clement "Sir Coxsone" Dodd.

Dillon recorded under the name Jack Sparrow before forming the Ethiopians in the early 1960s. He recorded a series of ska songs, including "Bull Whip," which featured a young Bob Marley on backup vocals.

Dillon had been diagnosed with a brain tumor in June. His daughter says he died from lung and prostate cancer. He is survived by seven children. He was 68.

Read more at Billboard.

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