RIP King Stitt 1940-2012

King StittUPDATE: While I usually wait to see something from a major publication such as the Gleaner or Observer the posts that were showing up were coming from some very trustworthy sources. This morning I have now seen 2 tweets that indicate the Stitt might not have passed but he is in the hospital. Let’s hope he can pull through – MORE AS SOON AS I GET IT

UPDATE 2: The Gleaner has confirmed the news as false and that Stitt is alive and doing better every day.

After just hearing and posting the news yesterday about King Stitt being in the hospital after his trip to Brazil last year that took the life of his friend/ touring partner/producer Chester Synmoie, it seems the trip has now also claimed the man himself today.

Dennis Alcapone posted this to his Facebook page earlier: “A Jamaican legend and one of the pioneer DJs of the great sound system era. King Stitt along with Count Machukie planted the seed for all of us.”

As the Observer reported back in October Synmoie & Stitt were making their way back home when Synmoie took ill on the way to the airport reportedly complaining of stomach pains and getting some meds. Arriving at the airport he went to the bathroom and was later found lying on the floor his death attributed to heart failure.

Synmoie produced Lone Ranger’s first major hit. “Barbabas Collins” in 1979, hooked up Lone Ranger with Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd, who cut his debut album for the Studio One label going on to work with Yellowman, Bobby Brown, Wilton Irie, Carlton Livingston and Lady Ann among others.

Another true originator and legend like no other. They don’t call him the Ugly One for nothing. He made a true stamp on the music of Jamaica influencing every DJ that came after him which was all of them as well as laying the basis for rap music years later.

Here was one of his last performances. This was from the Studio 1 Revue that took place at the Garance Reggae Festival in France last year on July 27th 2011.

Now play your favorite song in his honor!

I've been involved in the Los Angeles music scene since at least 1995 going to shows, promoting, spinning records and running labels. Ska and Early Reggae are my passion among other things of course.