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R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"

Posted by JImSqueech 
R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 10:32AM
Jah Know...He left us a legacy of GREAT MUSIC that will live on forever..





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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/25/2010 10:39AM by JImSqueech.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 10:48AM




Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/25/2010 10:57AM by Ras_Adam.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 10:51AM
Kevin Isaacs has confirmed it ...

RIP COOL RULER !

Such a sad day and a huge loss. Mr Isaacs will be greatly missed ... sad smiley
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 11:14AM
[www.bbc.co.uk]

Gregory Isaacs: 1951-2010

Reggae legend Gregory Isaacs has died after a battle with cancer.

Isaacs, who was 59 years old, died on Monday morning at his home in London where he spent part of his time.

He leaves behind a wife and children.

Close friends told BBC Caribbean that he had originally been diagnosed with cancer of the liver which had then spread.

The Jamaican reggae singer, who was nicknamed the Cool Ruler, was best known for the song 'Night Nurse'.

Earlier this year, the reggae legend was featured in the BBC's Caribbean Masters series.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 11:25AM












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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/25/2010 11:39AM by JImSqueech.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 11:32AM
Reggae may never be the same....I can only say how much Gregory's music enriched my life.

Photo taken at Bourbon Beach Jamaica about four years ago. Gregory singing in front of his own image.


Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 12:34PM
BLESS IN POWER "COOL RULER"

YOUR MUSIC WILL LAST FORIVER

GWAN AH ZION NOW
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 01:07PM
Gregory Isaacs and Sugar Minott gone in this year----I see no one even near their stature on the horizon.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 01:08PM
I sent an email to BBC this morning for confirmation and someone named Neil actually called to confirm. He said the diagnosis was lung cancer, not liver. He just wanted it to get out there correctly.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 01:47PM
All things considered, what a race he ran, and from high to low points and back an amazing amazing career-----

If there's a little gyal yuh wan' dance wid, but she don't wan' dance with nobody, wait until the Gregory song play, THEN ask her---'becas' if she not gonna dance when Gregory play she ain't evah gonna dance!

As told to me by somebody in Sav-La-Mar on my first visit to JA in the early 80s...
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 01:50PM
SAD new to wake up to...JAH SPEED TO ZION MI BREDDA
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 02:39PM
Quote
papa ray
Gregory Isaacs and Sugar Minott gone in this year----I see no one even near their stature on the horizon.

Well said.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 10/25/2010 02:42PM by Original RuffNeck Sol Jah.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 02:57PM
DAM DAM DAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Jah Guide Greogry Isaacs aka the "Cool Ruler" another soldier gone too soon...... Give thanks for your lessons in music and life. Give thanks for your voice that you gifted all of us to hear.... Blessed rest Soldier....... Selah......
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 03:02PM
R.I.P. mr. Isaacs! Thanks for all the fantastic music always a big source of inspiration,
We will miss you!







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Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 03:22PM
Very sad - another legend gone!

RIP
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 03:35PM
Gregory Isaacs, Jamaican reggae artist, dead at 59

Gregory Isaacs
Reggae singer Gregory Isaacs. (Ras Records)
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By Terence McArdle
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, October 25, 2010; 10:30 AM

Gregory Isaacs, 59, the Jamaican-born reggae singer who was known as the "cool ruler" for his smooth, romantic singing style and who popularized the reggae subgenre known as lover's rock, died of lung cancer Oct. 25 at his home in London.

Unlike so-called roots rock singers Bob Marley and Burning Spear, who popularized songs that reflected world politics and the Rastafarian culture, Mr. Isaacs was best known for his love songs, many of which he wrote.

With his seductive baritone, he often pleaded for love or begged a lover for understanding. Nattily attired with his fedora hats and sports jackets, Mr. Isaacs conveyed a combination of prowess and vulnerability that invited comparisons to American rhythm and blues singers Tyrone Davis and Marvin Gaye.

Writing in the New York Times, music critic Milo Miles called Mr. Isaacs "the most exquisite vocalist in reggae," adding that "his lustful songs are not simple seductions or sexual boasts but sensuous daydreams, escapes from tribulation that invite the listener along."

With the success of his release "Night Nurse" (1982), which he co-wrote, Mr. Isaacs was poised for international stardom.

"Night Nurse," with its sly innuendo - "I don't wanna see no doc. I need attendance from my nurse around the clock. There's no prescription for me, she's my only remedy" - was a club hit for Mr. Isaacs in 1982.

That same year, he was sentenced to six months in a Jamaican prison for possession of unlicensed firearms.
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Mr. Isaacs maintained that he owned the guns for protection from robbers and political violence, which had engulfed Jamaica in the late 1970s, "just like you have a jacket to protect you from the cold."

It was later reported that he had been arrested 27 times, mostly on drug charges - a fact that may have accounted for his reluctance to give interviews.

Gregory Anthony Isaacs was born July 15, 1951, in the impoverished Denham Town neighborhood of Kingston, where he listened to American rhythm and blues balladeers Sam Cooke and Ben E. King.

After winning several talent shows as a teenager, he first recorded in a duo with singer Winston Sinclair in 1968 and joined a vocal trio, the Concords, that recorded in the era's popular rock steady style.

In 1973, Mr. Isaacs struck out on his own. He started a record company, African Museum, with another Jamaican singer, Erroll Dunkley. There he had several hits in Jamaica with "My Only Lover" (1973), sometimes cited as the first lovers rock record, "Love Is Overdue" (1974) and "All I Have Is Love" (1976).

A prominent company, Island Records, started releasing his recordings in the United States in 1982. Mr. Isaacs was so prolific that the Web site All Music Guide estimated he had appeared nearly 500 albums released in Jamaica, the U.S. and the U.K.

Mr. Isaacs appeared in the 1978 subtitled Jamaican film "Rockers," a plotless, episodic comedy sometimes described as the "A Hard Days Night" of reggae music. He played a local locksmith haggling with two tourists over the price of unlocking their car and is later seen performing in a night club.

Mr. Isaacs was married multiple times, and a complete list of survivors could not be confirmed.

He continued to record and tour throughout the 1990s. However in 2007, the London Daily Telegraph reported that addiction to crack cocaine had caused the singer to lose his teeth - a problem that affected his singing.

That year he told the Daily Telegraph, "It was the greatest college ever, but the most expensive fee ever paid - the Cocaine High School. I learnt everything - and now I've put it on the side."
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 03:40PM
Peace be the journey Mr Gregory"The Cool Ruler"Isaacs.R.I.P. singing in your sweet voice as a Zion angel.


Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 03:48PM
Damn bad news to start the week with... RIP Gregory, rest and draw strength in the arms of Jah.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 04:09PM
sad smiley Thanks for all the blessings you gave, and thanks again to SNWMF for bringing out the legend for their final curtain calls.

~Highest Heightz Every Time~
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 04:12PM


Taken in the food court at SNWMF last year.
"Just photograph me from here up."
R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 04:13PM
I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to see him live at SNWMF this summer 2010! Thanks SNWMF, and RIP to the sweetest voice (in my opinon) in Reggae.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 05:33PM
paying tribute to the Cool Ruler.... I was lucky enough to capture a couple of his performances this year.









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Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 05:53PM
Give Thanks for the blessings the cool ruler gave us all....

run tune.

--------------------------------------
FullWatts on your stereo...™
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 05:57PM
Don't miss your water till the well runs dry...

I felt bad seeing the easy dismissive attitude of some @ SNWMF this last June, while watching what was---IMO---the best vocal set I'd heard from Gregory probably in the past dozen or so years. Yes the voice had thinned, but the core of this man was intact and the Cool Ruler was the bearer of so many wonderful and heartical songs, you easily could lose count.

I'm on good terms with my first wife: our son is grown, and we get along, but it had been many months since we'd last spoke---we went often to JA during the first half of the 80s, and we put hundreds of miles on motorcycles going here and there(she's a game woman to have ridden with me all those nights, going to hear music way out in the country; on her first trip, she checked the runnins, went and bought some different color of cloth at a shop and would wrap her hair modestly and never walk through the streets looking any less than a Queen---she had good instincts for being in JA, and how to move...).

Needless to say, her absolute #1 favorite singer was Mr. Isaacs. No one else even came close...

So when I saw Isaacs passed, I HAD to call & and let her know this morn. Jeannette cried 'OH NO!'....& I heard her voice catch and she said 'My God...we'll never have anyone else like him...'

I think my ex-wife nailed it there.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 06:00PM
This has been a very sad year for reggae music with the loss of Yabby You, Sugar Minott, and now Gregory.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 06:03PM
This morning before dawn I heard the news but the only confirmation I had was an article from BBC Caribbean. I wrote them for assurance that the news was confirmed. Much to my surprise, they called my house (a man named Neil from BBC) to not only confirm but to also clarify that Gregory died from lung cancer not liver as originally stated. He wanted to make sure the facts were corrected from earlier news releases.

Photo from Rebel Salute 2009 Beenieman and Gregory
copyright 2009 Sista Irie photos all rights reserved


Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 06:21PM
Sweetest of photos, Bev, thanks yet again.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 06:48PM
@Digitalguise, that has gotta be a classic photo-incredible!!

@Paparay, nice perspective as usual. I agree with you that Gregory sounded as good as any performance I've seen of him going back 20 years at least. I certainly had no trouble grooving to the Detour Posse in that early evening vibe near sunset-something I won't forget.

@ Sis Irie, sweet headbut capture!
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 06:52PM



R.I.P Ruler
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 07:28PM
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 07:31PM
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 07:34PM
R.I.P. Gregory!

Much love and respect!!!!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Whether you suffer from glaucoma, or you just rented The Matrix, medical marijuana can make things fabulous! ...medically."

--Homer J. Simpson
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 07:51PM





Your Home now Rest Well.......
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 07:52PM
Nice one blaaklung-thought about that one today already!

But I say... Some Never Even Plant yet want to Reap,
If you run, be careful, try to look before you leap;
Took a little walk from my Vineyard...
Now I'm on my own
Now I'm left alone..
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 25, 2010 08:30PM
RIP Cool Ruler

Gregory in Rockers....


Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 26, 2010 10:59AM
* David Katz
* guardian.co.uk, Monday 25 October 2010 18.44 BST
* Article history

Gregory Isaacs, who has died of cancer aged 59, was one of reggae music's most popular singers. Known as the Cool Ruler for his exceptionally suave and emotive voice, Isaacs scored many hits during the 1970s and 80s, including the perennial favourite Night Nurse, and remained active as a recording artist, live performer and producer in the decades that followed. Although best known for romantic ballads, delivered with a hint of vulnerability, he also excelled at songs of social protest and work that expressed unwavering pride in his African heritage. However, his long-term drug use and involvement in criminal activity led to long periods of incarceration and repeated arrests, hastening his physical decline.

Isaacs was born in Fletcher's Land, a particularly neglected patch of the ghetto in the Jamaican capital, Kingston. His father left for the US during his childhood, so Gregory and his younger brother, Sylvester, were raised by their mother in the rough streets of nearby Denham Town. Showing a natural aptitude for singing, Isaacs began making an impact on talent contests during his teens (often as a duo with Sylvester). He was inspired by stars such as Sam Cooke and Otis Redding, as well as local acts including Alton Ellis and the Melodians, but named his mother as his first vocal role model, since he used to hear her singing while she ironed.

In 1968, Isaacs recorded and produced a duet, Another Heartache, with an aspiring singer from the neighbourhood, Winston Sinclair, but the song sank without a trace. His next effort, Ballroom Floor, was recorded for Prince Buster, after receiving a personal recommendation from a local gangster, Lester Lloyd Coke (aka Jim Brown). In the same era, Isaacs sold marijuana on behalf of Toddy Livingston, father of the singer Bunny Wailer.

Isaacs subsequently formed a trio, the Concords, with two other hopefuls, recording a number of impressive tunes for Rupie Edwards in 1969, of which the most notable was Don't Let Me Suffer. Other stirring solo singles, such as Too Late and Lonely Man, followed. By 1970 he had formed the independent label African Museum with a fellow singer, Errol Dunkley. They found instant success with Dunkley's Movie Star and Isaacs's moderately popular My Only Lover (featuring the Wailers' backing band), before Dunkley broke away to found his own label. Isaacs's first substantial hit, All I Have Is Love, was produced by a perceptive downtown promoter, Phil Pratt, in 1973. The following year, he scored an even bigger hit with Love Is Overdue, the first of several for the producer Alvin "GG" Ranglin, who soon issued Isaacs's debut album, In Person (1975).

As his songwriting skills matured, Isaacs shifted focus to address social injustice, in work that expressed longing for his ancestral African homeland, and grew dreadlocks as a sign of his commitment to the Rastafari faith. At Lee Perry's Black Ark studio, he cut the anthem-like Mr Cop in 1976 and the censorious Black Against Black, which decried self-destructive ghetto violence. After the release of the self-produced concept album, Mr Isaacs (1977), he received a major career boost in 1978 by signing to Virgin Records for the album Cool Ruler and making an appearance in the feature film Rockers. The 1979 Virgin follow-up, Soon Forward, included the chart-topping Mr Brown and a popular title track which was one of the first recordings to make use of the production skills of Sly and Robbie.

A shift to Charisma Records' subsidiary Pre in 1980 brought the album Lonely Lover and its follow-up, More Gregory, the latter featuring the Jamaican chart success Top Ten. Both albums were backed by the Roots Radics band, with whom Isaacs toured the UK in 1980-81. Night Nurse (1982), issued by Island, was his most commercially successful set to date, but just as he reached a pinnacle of popularity, problems arose. He was imprisoned in Jamaica following the discovery of an unlicensed firearm at his home, and he also served time for cocaine possession. He addressed his experiences of prison in the subsequent Island release, Out Deh! (1983).

After recording the relaxed Private Beach Party album for the producer Gussie Clarke in 1985, he cut less impressive work for a number of relatively unknown producers. Then, in 1987, another cocaine bust prompted him to go into rehab. This was followed by a more productive period that peaked with the release of Red Rose for Gregory (1988), a hit dancehall album issued by Clarke, and featuring the outstanding single, Rumours.

Although Isaacs would score a few more Jamaican chart hits, record for the British label Acid Jazz, open a recording studio in Jamaica, and launch the singing career of his son Kevin, he continued to use drugs. This resulted in several patchy releases, the loss of a number of his teeth, and a reputation for unreliability. Nevertheless, he maintained a loyal fan base, both at home in Jamaica and overseas.

He is survived by his wife Linda and several children.

• Gregory Anthony Isaacs, singer, songwriter and record producer, born 15 July 1951; died 25 October 2010
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 26, 2010 01:09PM
A few more photos in tribute. I am still digging up some older shots from the archives. They lost their titles when my computer crashed a year ago.

When I first began visiting Jamaica in the mid seventies, I spent many a night at the legendary DeBuss on Negril Beach. Miss Joy, the owner, helped showcase many of the reggae artists who came to great fame through the years. Miss Joy and I are working together on a written documentary of those days. I was in my twenties and just learning there was more to reggae than Bob Marley and the Wailers. As much as I loved Bob, it was wonderful to hear the smooth crooning voice of Gregory long after I retired from the beach late at night, as I lay in my bed across the street from DeBuss. Gregory's voice would go into the night as the tree frogs trumpeted all around my windows. Memories that can never be erased.














AJ
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 26, 2010 11:15PM
Gregory - one of a kind - for real "STAR TIME"...
last night we had "More Gregory" on the box... today "Cool Ruler"

RIP
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 26, 2010 11:40PM
RIP one of the all time greats
Makes me sad thinking of reggae now...who is coming up that will build a catalog like his?
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 27, 2010 01:52AM
[url=

][/url]
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 27, 2010 06:13PM
Featuring the fine shot of Gregory by Kim Salloway, our tribute to Gregory(written for the non-reggae fanatic, as it should be) is on our website,
www.vintagevinyl.com.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 01:45AM
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 02:10AM
Awesome picture!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/28/2010 02:15AM by think tank.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 02:15AM
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 05:06AM
Ras Adam, that is such a classic shot! Who made the photo?
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 05:17AM
Quote
echodelic
RIP one of the all time greats
Makes me sad thinking of reggae now...who is coming up that will build a catalog like his?

No one!

Those days are gone forever but at least there are the recorded documents & thanks to reissues and digital technology - the music is archived safely on countless hard drives around the World.

We all have to steel ourselves for more great artists & figures passing away as well since people from those golden days of the music are only getting older day by day. I think we will never again in reggae music see the likes of these artists who built monumental, classic and priceless catalogs - the times, mood & conditions are just no longer there.
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 10:37AM
the photo was posted by steve of youth promotion on fb
a
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 28, 2010 12:07PM
what a fabulous photo- sugah and the cool ruler!
Re: R.I.P. Gregory Isaacs "The Cool Ruler"
October 30, 2010 12:31PM
Entertainers mourn Cool Ruler's passing

By Cecilia Campbell-Livingston and Basil Walters Observer Staff Reporters

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Bookmark and Share

Reactions to yesterday's passing of the Cool Ruler, Gregory Isaacs have been coming in. Although he has been ailing for some time, his fellow entertainers have expressed sorrow at the passing of this artiste who was often seen as a fixture of the local and international reggae scene.

The 59-year old artiste who passed yesterday morning in London, was known for his smooth brand of Reggae and hits Night Nurse, Rumours, Hard Drugs, and All I have is Love.

ISAACS... has produced some of the best Reggae lover’s rock songs of all times and has left his eternal imprint within the industry
[Hide Description] ISAACS... has produced some of the best Reggae lover’s rock songs of all times and has left his eternal imprint within the industry
[Restore Description]
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Singer George Nooks who was also billed on Isaacs' last show in Jamaica, reflected on the life of his friend and colleague. "I was just glad for the time he gave us on earth and the kinds of songs he has left behind, ensuring that his memory will live on. On a personal note I was blessed by his friendship and he will be forever missed," Nooks revealed.

Another veteran of the music, and Isaacs' contemporary, Ken Boothe, was also in a reflective mood when he spoke to the Observer. "Most singers are like family" he said, "I know I am gonna miss Gregory. We grew up in Denham Town, and I know him as a compassionate man. He know the needs of people, he helps out," Boothe reminisced.

Leroy Sibbles, another master from the rocksteady era, noted that he had worked with Isaacs in the past and they were planning another show. "Gregory is a big loss to the entertainment industry and to the world. I did back-up on a lot of his songs, like Mr Brown. Actually we were planning to do a show in England, but it never materialise as he took sick suddenly. Gregory wanted to do one more performance,"

Among Gregory Isaacs' credits are three Grammy Award nominations. The most recent was this year for his 2009 release, Brand New Me. Producer on that album, Tad Dawkins Snr, was full of praises for the late artiste. "Gregory has produced some of the best Reggae lover's rock songs of all times and has left his eternal imprint within the industry. Having worked with Gregory for many years on some of his classic projects we know first hand the impeccable craft which he possessed and we are truly saddened by his passing."

In their reflections of the latest departed treasure of reggae music, two more of his peers who were among the last to share final moments recalled his jovial nature. "For me, Gregory is phenomenal and a true veteran," Lloyd Parks said. The popular, bandleader, bassist and vocalist added. "He (Gregory) had a sense of humour which was like a sample."

Parks also disclosed that he was preparing to perform free of cost for a benefit concert which was being planed in England for Gregory Isaacs. "I would a go free. Because, I don't know for anybody else, but for me, Gregory was a wonderful human being. From my experience with him, he is a great person," he stressed.

Isaacs and Parks both of whom have done numerous tours together had their last conversation last Thursday, even though, the singer could not respond verbally. "I spoke to him on Thursday but him couldn't talk but him listened. I said Gregory talk to God Almighty right now. Regardless of what people may say, I think his soul will be resting in peace," Parks who played on two of Isaacs' hits Number One and Hard Drugs, told the Observer.

Freddie McGregor, another of Isaacs' contemporaries, noted, "Gregory Isaacs is my singer, my brother, my great friend. We shared many special moments and time with Gregory both on tour and personally. As I can remember he is just one of the nicest persons there ever was. He always reminds me of Dennis Brown and when you hear people like them pass away is like you never ready for that to happen," said McGregor. "Right now mi a celebrate with Gregory because I saw him two weeks ago in London and sit down with him and hold a great vibes. Him gi we joke like crazy and we laugh just like old times. He was in a happy mood but physically he was weak, but it was the same old Gregory."
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