264561258-WerememberGregoryIsaacswithSakiMafundikwa-1 - Copy.docx - Tichakunda Mafundikwa Trend Piece Remembering Gregory Isaacs with Saki Mafundikwa

264561258-WerememberGregoryIsaacswithSakiMafundikwa-1 - Copy.docx

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Tichakunda Mafundikwa Trend Piece: Remembering Gregory Isaacs with Saki Mafundikwa October 25, 2010 was more significant than most days. Not because it was my 20th birthday and neither the fact that my Father was taking me out to eat, no. Instead something that affected millions of people, the death of a reggae legend. “Gregory’s gone he's gone!” my Father cried in disbelief. I too cried with him. “The most exquisite vocalist in reggae” was gone. Isaacs had finally lost his battle with lung cancer at his home in South London. One person who was deeply affected by his passing was Dean “cannonball” Fraser; a renowned saxophonist and close friend. In 2011, Fraser initiated a project that brought together various artists to sing some of Isaacs classics, in the form of the album: We Remember Gregory Isaacs. He explains, "When my friend Gregory passed away last year, I wanted to express my appreciation for our musical association and love for him as a close friend. We’d performed together all over the world through the late ‘70s and ‘80s when I was a member of We The People and later with Sly & Robbie. I decided to do a tribute album, but had no money to produce it. I reached out to the reggae community and was overwhelmed by people's willingness to give their time and talents to make this vision real". (Reggeaville.com) The tribute album comes at a time when new artists are remixing the work of old artists; with mixed results. One of the latest examples being Christina Aguilera’s and Pitbull’s “Feel this moment” a revamped version of a-ha’s 80s hit “Take on me.” There is a notion among many that the original versions will always be the best... so does We Remember Gregory Isaacs just fall short or stands on its own two feet? To run the gauntlet on the album and Isaacs career, I seeked the opinion of a lifelong fan Saki Mafundikwa.
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