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Sugar Minott

Jamaican singer and producer. Born in Kingston in 1956, he started out as a selector with local sound systems before forming a group, ?The African Brothers? with friends Derrick Howard and future dancehall star Tony Tuff in 1969. They recorded tracks for a number of small local labels as well as their own Ital imprint. They cut one single at Studio One b4 going their separate ways. Sugar however had always regarded Studio One as his spiritual home, he?d grown up going to Coxsone dances next to his house and he was delighted to stay on at Studio One as an in-house musical apprentice, providing backing vocals and playing guitar and percussion on a number of recordings there in the early 70s

Sugar?s ability to write and sing new songs over existing Studio One rhythms would become the blueprint for a new style of Jamaican music ? dancehall. His first album, ?Live Loving? is often hailed as the first ever dancehall record. Classic Studio One tracks now had exciting new versions such as Alton Ellis? ?I?m Just A Guy?, which became ?Vanity? and The Heptones? ?Pretty Looks Isn?t All?, which became ?Never Give Up?

Sugar stayed at Studio one for 5 years, recording 3 classic albums (?Live Loving?, ?Showcase? and ?More Sugar?) as well as numerous singles. He left in 1979 to start his own label and production company, ?Black Roots? and ?Youth Promotions?, nurturing young and up and coming talent in the same way he?d watched Coxsone Dodd work at Studio One. He still continued to sing and perform himself, with a variety of different producers, often as a means of getting free studio time to enable him to work on his own productions

In the early 80s Sugar was spending more and more time in he UK where he had a huge hit in the UK pop charts with ?Good Thing Going?. He also recorded the massively popular ?Lovers Rock? with Carroll Thompson. He then returned to Jamaica to further Black Youth / Roots Promotions, which he still runs to this day.

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