Reggae artist Toots Hibbert continues to fight for his life.

Toots Hibbert
Toots Hibbert

The reggae community continues to pray and reggae legend, Toots, of Toots and the Maytals, continue to fight for his life. The 54-46 singer is still in a medically induced coma at the University Hospital of the West Indies in Kingston. The singer was transferred to the institution from a private facility on Monday.

In a joint statement from entertainment and culture minister Olivia “Babsy” Grange and Trojan Jamaica/BMG, reassured Jamaicans that the singer was in good hands.

“He is getting the best medical treatment possible and his condition is being carefully monitored,” said Grange in the release sent to 18 Karat Reggae.

Trojan Jamaica/BMG, through publicist Claude Mills, said the Hibbert was receiving “round the clock treatment”.

“Mr Hibbert’s family would like to thank everyone for the outpouring of love and prayers during this time,” the statement read in part.

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Hibbert’s manager, Cabel Stephenson, said he is confident the singer would pull through.

“The doctors and consultants at University Hospital of the West Indies, with the assistance of Dr Shernette Bryan, are working 24/7 around the clock to save him and we thank them for their efforts. We know he will pull through. He is a true warrior,” he said.

Hibbert was one of the 10 finalists in the recently concluded Jamaica Festival Song Competition — a contest he has won three times.

Still actively touring, he recently released his latest album, Got To Be Tough, on August 28. The band was an opening for groups including The Who and the Eagles.

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Formed in the 1960s, his band Toots and the Maytals helped popularise reggae music. The group’s 1968 single Do The Reggay was the first song to use the word “reggae” naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience.

Toots and the Maytals’s popular songs include Monkey Man, Sweet And Dandy, Bam Bam, and Pomps And Pride.

In 2005, the group won the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album with True Love. Seven years later, he was awarded an Order of Distinction for his contribution to Jamaica’s music.



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