“If you wanna live, treat me good. Am like a Stepping Razor don’t you watch my size am dangerous.” Those are the poignant and straight to the point words from Peter Tosh. Peter Tosh was much more than a musician. He was a revolutionary, an advocate, a militant, a Stepping Razor.
Peter Tosh’s music is not to entertain. It is to awaken, it is to teach, it is a cry for justice, and it is the truth in its purest form. His songs won’t make you comfortable, instead they will make you question everything that you think make you comfortable.
In ‘Equal Right and Justice’, Peter chants, “Everyone is crying out for peace, none is crying out for justice. I don’t want no peace, till man have equal rights and justice.” How many of us would trade in our peaceful setting to make sure all our brothers and sisters have justice?
Peter Tosh was the bravest advocate for that which he knows was important to Rastafarians around the world. People all over the world love Tosh’s songs like ‘Legalize it’ and ‘Bush doctor’ but not too many know of the abuse he suffered at the hands of the Jamaican police in his advocacy of the legalization of marijuana. There was a time when Peter Tosh was almost beaten to death by the police because of his use of marijuana on stage.
Despite all of this, Peter Tosh never wavered from is mission, never compromise on his message but kept on ‘burning down Babylon’ with his spiritual fire.
Peter Tosh’s influence transcends all borders and boundaries. Today you not only hear Peter Tosh when you listen to his music. You also hear tosh when you listen to other artists like the late great South African Lucky Dube, Sizzla Kalonji, Anthony B, Richie Spice, Yami Bolo and so many other of the young Rastafarian musicians?
Peter Tosh’s name may not be echoed worldwide as Bob Marley’s (for obvious reasons), there is no denying the great impact the Peter had on reggae music. If there was a picture in the dictionary of a true musical revolution soldier, it would no doubt have to be a picture of Peter Tosh. This was the man who even though he knew what the police were capable of, he did not mince his words when he told them how he felt about them. Peter Tosh is a stepping razor, don’t watch his size, he is dangerous.