Reggae legend and Dub pioneer Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry has died aged 85.
The Grammy-winning producer – whose real name was Rainford Hugh Perry – sadly passed away at Noel Holmes Hospital in Lucea, Jamaica, on Sunday morning (29.08.21).
Andrew Holness, the country’s prime minister, confirmed the news and sent his “deep condolences” to his family.
He tweeted: “My deep condolences to the family, friends, and fans of legendary record producer and singer, Rainford Hugh Perry OD, affectionately known as ‘Lee Scratch‘ Perry.
“Perry was a pioneer in the 1970s’ development of dub music with his early adoption of studio effects to create new instrumentals of existing reggae tracks.
“He has worked with and produced for various artistes, including Bob Marley and the Wailers, the Congos, Adrian Sherwood, the Beastie Boys, and many others.
“Undoubtedly, Lee Scratch Perry will always be remembered for his sterling contribution to the music fraternity. May his soul Rest In Peace.”
Perry was known for his work with a wide selection of artists from Bob Marley and the Wailers and Sir Paul McCartney to Moby and the Beastie Boys.
The producer was among the first to use studio effects to rework reggae tracks.
His career began in the late 1950s as a record seller for Clement Coxsone Dodd’s sound system.
The pair fell out over financial issues, and Perry wound up launching his own label, Upsetter Records, in 1968.
His first big hitter, ‘People Funny Boy’, took aim at Gibbs and sold in excess of 60,000 copies in Jamaica alone.
Later releases on the label included ‘Small Axe and Duppy Conqueror’ by the Wailers – late reggae icon Marley’s band.
The renowned music star earned the Grammy for Best Reggae Album for his ‘Jamaican E.T.’ album in 2003.
Perry reached a wider audience when he made a vocal appearance on ‘Dr. Lee, PhD’ from the Beastie Boys’ ‘Hello Nasty’ LP in 1998.
The star, who also had a studio band named The Upsetters, released music right before his death.
His last song, ‘No Bloody Friends’, came out earlier this month.
A cause of death is not known at this time.