Jah Shaka dead: Dub and reggae legend dies as music fans pay tribute to 'greatest soundman that ever lived' | The Sun
REGGAE legend Jah Shaka has died – with fans today paying tribute to the "greatest soundman that ever lived".
Jah Shaka AKA Zulu Warrior, was a Jamaican sound system operator and pioneer in the dub and reggae music industry, who inspired many around him.
Based in South East London, he combined the Rastifarian term for 'God' with the legendary Zulu leader to become Jah Shaka, and became one of the city’s most loved sound systems.
The news was shared by Horsepower Productions’s Benny Ill, with a Twitter post earlier this afternoon.
It was accompanied by a photo of Shaka DJing, and was captioned: “Rest In Power Jah Shaka”.
His cause of death is currently unknown and has not been shared publicly by Benny III.
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Dubstep producer the Bug wrote: “So sad to read Jah Shaka has departed this planet … Rest in peace. A heroic figure who kept Dub alive, when few cared … I spent many all nighters being transfixed by his passion and selections.”
Tributes poured in following the announcement of his sudden passing.
One fan wrote: "Condolences to the fambul, friends and fans of JAH SHAKA – ZULU WARRIOR, and those fortunate to have met him. May the Zulu Warrior Rest in Paradise."
Fellow musician, DJ Jumpin Jack Frost, also shared his grief following the devastating news.
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He said in a Twitter post: “The king of Kings has left us. The greatest soundman that ever lived.”
Nadine White wrote: "The sound system was formed as a vehicle to bring a message of peace. To bring people together.
"Jah Shaka, legendary reggae sound system pioneer, has died. A musical giant who was beloved far & wide; a pillar within our Black communities and a real messenger. Sad news"
Jah Shaka was born in Clarendon Parish, Jamaica, and kickstarted his successful career as an operator on the Freddie Cloudburst Sound System.
He moved to London in 1956, where he experienced the harsh racism associated with the Windrush generation.
The icon described the environment in an interview quoted by In Sheep's Clothing Hi-Fi, and said: "In the Windrush time, in London, on the doors of the houses, there were signs saying ‘no Blacks, no Irish and no dogs.
"In the 1950s and 1960s in London, there were house parties – 50, 60 people with only record players.
“It helped families know other families, which was important at that time because the people were forced to be segregated."
But, by the 1970s, the legendary musician was operating his own sound system, The Jah Shaka Sound System, producing many iconic reggae tracks and running his own record label – Jah Shaka Music.
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And in 1980, Jah Shaka starred as himself in the movie Babylon, which portrayed the racial tensions he battled when he moved to the UK.
His work was recognised for attracting an audience from all backgrounds and ages – which he claimed to be the purpose of his Rastafarian beliefs.
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