Songs, sto­ries of Prince Buster at trib­ute con­cert

Jamaica Gleaner - - ENTERTAINMENT - Mel Cooke Gleaner Writer

THERE WERE pa­tent con­nec­tions be­tween the late Prince Buster and per­form­ers at Satur­day’s trib­ute con­cert which fol­lowed his in­ter­ment at May Men Ceme­tery, Span­ish Town Road, St An­drew.

Some links crossed gen­er­a­tions; the leader of the Mys­tic Rev­e­la­tion of Rasta­fari re­minded the ca­pac­ity au­di­ence at the In­sti­tute of Ja­maica’s lec­ture hall that the drum­ming of his fa­ther, Count Ossie, was in­cluded in Buster’s pro­duc­tion, Oh Carolina.

There were also di­rect con­nec­tions to Buster as a pro­ducer. Den­nis Al­capone men­tioned a record­ing ses­sion with foot­baller Al­lan ‘Skill’ Cole and late Tivoli Gar­dens strong­man, Claudie Mas­sop. He gave Al­capone strik­ing, durable ad­vice that fame does not last long, so he should make good use of it.

“Never for­get that,” said Den­nis Al­capone, be­fore do­ing El Paso.

With poet Mutabaruka as MC and the band with bass gui­tarist Lloyd Parkes at the helm, the re­spects to Buster’s ma­te­rial started early. The band started the mu­sic and Mutabaruka did a line from The Peo­ple’s Court (re­lated to Buster’s court­room drama Judge Dread). The line about putting politi­cians on trial for trick­ing peo­ple, hit home and the trib­ute was off to a good start. It flagged a bit in the later stages, as a cou­ple per­form­ers in the au­di­ence were urged to come for­ward, but picked up Mys­tic Rev­e­la­tion of Rasta­fari clos­ing Prince Buster’s trib­ute con­cert on Satur­day at the In­sti­tute of Ja­maica’s lec­ture hall, East Street, Kingston. Strange­jah Cole (left) and Patsy Todd (right) per­form at the trib­ute con­cert to Prince Buster, held on Satur­day evening at the lec­ture hall, In­sti­tute of Ja­maica, East Street, Kingston. with the Mys­tic Rev­e­la­tion of Rasta­fari to end on a high.


Ernie Smith did Buster’s En­joy Your­self, while Strange­jah Cole and Patsy Todd were a hit com­bi­na­tion with, When I Call Your Name – Cole adding Rough and Tough on his own. Sax­o­phon­ist Lester Ster­ling, Ju­nior Sin­clair (who did Prince Buster’s Hard Man Fe Dead) and Errol Dunk­ley were all part of the trib­ute. Dunk­ley added mem­o­ries of Buster to his de­liv­ery of Movie Star and Black Cin­derella.

“My first pro­ducer was Prince Buster. He pro­duce me when I was 11 years old, him make me stand on a box (to reach the mi­cro­phone),” Dunk­ley said.

Bongo Her­man moved from the drums to the mi­cro­phone to hon­our the late Al­ton El­lis, who he said was Price Buster’s favourite, with Break­ing Up. Buster’s 10 Com­mand­ments was done by the band and the req­ui­site re­sponse of a col­lec­tive ‘bow!’ was pro­vide to Tappa Zukie’s query, “peo­ple are you ready?”

The Mys­tic Rev­e­la­tion of Rasta­fari gave re­spect to Prince Buster be­ing a Mus­lim (named Muham­mad Yusuf Ali), their leader say­ing, “give thanks to Al­lah on this oc­ca­sion for the fit of PB – Prince Buster.”

And they closed the con­cert with Peace and Love to a sway­ing, singing mass of peo­ple bid­ding Prince Buster farewell.


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