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Shan
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Absolute legend! RIP one of the greatest & most respected musicians Sad
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 12:08 pm
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Rico's children and wonderful close friend, Rasta Larry, will be attending the special honorary show next Friday 11th Sept (planned since last year), at the 229 Club in London, where Rico was due to attend and receive an award accolade, from the Jamaican High Commissioner (along with Owen Gray and Prince Buster).

The family will receive the award on Rico's behalf. The night will include a speech by Jerry Dammers and performance by The Neville Staple Band, plus other special guests.

Bless you Rico. Your legendary name and music will live forever
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 2:05 pm
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Imani
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RIP Rico. Such a hugely respected artist across the music world. And he got the acclaim he deserved in his lifetime. The first three minutes of this video feature an interview with Rico, which really sums up what he was about.

<br /><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0q-iIfjklk" target="_blank">View on YouTube</a>
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 4:49 pm
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bugger
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 7:14 pm
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Harry
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I still feel sad about this.
He had a great life, lived to be 80, traveled the world and had a million friends and fans so it's just pure selfishness on my part.
I really hope more music of his music is released - I just want a tiny bit more.
I had a go at writing a tribute...

http://therebelmagazine.blogspot.co.uk/2015/09/rip-rico-rodriguez.html
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 9:20 pm
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Trim
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Thank-you Rico.
What fantastic music we had in our teenage years.
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 9:47 pm
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kennybacon
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Harry wrote:
I still feel sad about this.
He had a great life, lived to be 80, traveled the world and had a million friends and fans so it's just pure selfishness on my part.
I really hope more music of his music is released - I just want a tiny bit more.
I had a go at writing a tribute...

http://therebelmagazine.blogspot.co.uk/2015/09/rip-rico-rodriguez.html


That's a nice tribute Harry
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Sat Sep 05, 2015 11:26 pm
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Dox
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God bless you brother Rico.
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Sun Sep 06, 2015 3:37 pm
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That's a heartfelt and touching tribute Harry ....
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Sun Sep 06, 2015 10:01 pm
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Sugarman
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Horace Panter speaking about Rico on BBC News.

BBC News 05/09/2015

http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-34165372
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Mon Sep 07, 2015 1:27 pm
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The Specials' founder Jerry Dammers pays tribute to Rico Rodriguez: "He taught me so much"

Jerry Dammers - founder of The Specials and 2 Tone Records - has released an emotional statement paying tribute to Rico Rodriguez, who played trombone in the band.

The legendary Jamaican trombonist passed away at the age of 80 this week. As well as his work with The Specials, Rodriguez featured on hundreds of other releases, dating from 1958 to his most recent recording as part of Jools Holland's band in 2008.

The Specials confirmed the news of Rodriguez's death in a tweet, writing, "Our dear friend Rico passed away today.We offer our deepest condolences to his family.His legacy will go on forever and a day. RIP dear Rico".

Rodriguez was awarded an MBE for services to music in 2007. He passed away in London on Friday (September 4).

Read Dammers' statement in full, below:

"It’s hard to express how sad I feel about the death of Rico Rodriguez. He taught me so much about what a proper musician is supposed to try and do. For me, getting to play with him was one of the greatest things about the Specials. His album ‘Man from Wareika’ had been one of my all-time favourites and a great inspiration. I could not believe that he had agreed to play with us, and his contribution to the Specials was immeasurable. He provided an all -important link to authentic Jamaican ska and reggae, which we had tried to copy, and his trombone added the essential element
which took us to a next level and helped offer the band a possibility of progression beyond the confines of punk."

"To me his majestic solo on the 12” version of 'Ghost Town' is the musical highpoint of The Specials and when I play it as a DJ it still elicits cheers from audiences, as the beginning of any Rico solo always has done live. When the Fun Boy Three left The Specials it seemed like the most natural thing in the world for the bassist, drummer, and myself to follow Rico and his constant companion, trumpeter Dick Cuthell . We toured as his backing band in Germany and Europe for a while."

"Rico’s time with The Specials was only a small part of his huge musical achievements and international reputation. Already a legend in Jamaica, along with Dandy Livingstone and a few others, he had been an ambassador of reggae music to Britain in the 60’s, amongst the first to play it live and record it in this country. A student of the legendary Alpha school in Kingston Jamaica, where very strict nuns taught music to boys from the poorest of backgrounds, Rico has stated that he then saw his role as using his trombone to express the suffering, and the aspirations of his people for a better and more just world. This was no less powerful being in an abstract way, with an instrument, than if it had been a singer using lyrics. His intentions in music were always very serious and dedicated."

"Rico’s playing was influenced by jazz, but was not jazz, and combined all the influences of the Caribbean, from mento , calypso and Cuban music, to folk music, blues, and African traditions which had survived doggedly through 400 years of slavery -most notable in this respect was the Nyabinghi drumming of Count Ossie in the Rasta community of Wareika Hills, of which Rico was a part."

"At the last gig he ever did, where Rico could no longer play his trombone, but still continued to sing as other musicians played his music, the legendary Jamaican producer Bunny Lee said Rico was just as responsible as his fellow Jamaican trombone legend Don Drummond, in creating the iconic sound which for a while made the trombone virtually the national instrument of Jamaica , eventually playing it’s part in making reggae probably the most popular music in the world. Rico’s band supported Bob Marley on tour internationally at the height of their success. Rico received the highly prestigious Jamaican Musgrave Medal for art, as well as an MBE in this country."

"I think it was the incredible mixture of joy and sadness at one and the same time in his playing, which gave it its power. The mournful and melancholic sound of sufferation , the humour and joy of living , and the righteous anger and defiance of the poor and oppressed people of Jamaica , all combined in a highly melodic way with no unnecessary frills. Rico said the silences in music were just as important. His playing could break your heart and make you smile and determined, all at the same time. I will greatly miss him, as will many people around the world."

http://www.nme.com/news/the-specials/88111
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Mon Sep 07, 2015 1:39 pm
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rip rico Sad
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Tue Sep 08, 2015 3:53 am
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Sugarman
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One of Rico's last known studio recordings from 2011

R.I.P. Brother Rico


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Tue Sep 08, 2015 2:25 pm
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Sat Sep 12, 2015 6:31 pm
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grasshopper
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Just saw this on Twitter: http://www.coventrytelegraph.net/whats-on/music/tribute-rico-rodriguez-specials-trombonist-10085498

Remembering Rico Rodriguez: The Specials tombonist who blew us all away

Pete Clemons pays tribute to the life of Emmanuel 'Rico' Rodriguez (1934-2015)



My introduction to Rico Rodriguez was, I guess, like many others of my age. It was during the mid to late 1970s.

I remember listening to an LP on the Island label and either the inner sleeve was covered in those ‘if you enjoy this, you will love these’ adverts, or the LP had an advertising insert within it.

Either way, it led my curiosity to an album called Man From Wareika.

I used to love, and still do to this day, listening to the Trojan Records label and those wonderful singles released during the late 1960s and 70s. But Man From Wareika was very different.

For me personally, it was an early introduction to the kind of reggae that had that incredibly distinctive rhythm section of heavy bass and highly tuned drums that would take the world of music by storm.



Also, what set Man From Wareika apart was that the lead was not taken by guitar, or a more traditional instrument. The lead instrument on this album was a trombone – but not played in a loud, brash, jazzy fashion. This trombone was blown in a more soulful, simmering and seductive way.

Wareika, as I understand, is a hilly area on the edge of Kingston, Jamaica. And it was where Rico grew up.

It was also where Rico had eked out a living as a session player, albeit though, on some very important records by some very influential artists and musicians.

In fact, between 1958 and 1961 he had been credited on around 100 songs.

Rico made his way to England in 1962. His mother had given him the money for the fare over. He had no family over here and only one friend when he arrived.

After settling he found a lot of work with producer Laurel Aitken.

Sometime later, during 1969, he released his first solo album, Reco in Reggae Land, which was effectively a tribute to Don Drummond, who had been a close friend and mentor back in Jamaica.

At around the age of 40, Rico was approached by Island Records with a view to becoming a session musician for them.

Recording duties led to his first visit back to Jamaica since arriving in England. Island Records put him in contact with a more diverse range of musicians and it was at this point, I guess, when Rico first crossed paths with Dick Cuthell, who was also working for the company as a recording engineer. Dick Cuthell was also very accomplished with brass instruments.

The association with Island Records would then, of course, lead to the creation of Rico’s own Man From Wareika album, mixed by Dick Cuthell, and released on that label. The release of his album lead to Rico and his band being asked to open for fellow countryman Bob Marley and his Wailers on their 1977 Exodus tour of Europe.



To embellish a song, and fill it out, by adding the sound of extra instrumentation is down to pure vision. So the addition of brass instruments, by way of the introduction in 1979 of Rico Rodriguez, and slightly later, Dick Cuthell, into The Specials' own brand of music was, in hindsight, not just visionary but also a decision of total genius.

Not only was it a good move for The Specials but it also marked the beginning of a bond between Rico himself and the many people of Coventry who embraced the whole 2-Tone and ska music revival scene. And, of course, it also brought Rico a whole new audience.

Rico once said: “I really enjoyed playing with them (The Specials), especially going to America and Europe, all over, Dublin and Belfast and Ireland and Wales. It was good.”

In 1982, Rico returned to the Wareika Hills where he would stay for the next eight years. The following year however and more chart success followed. This time with a song that had been recorded before he left for Jamaica.

Paul Young had recorded a version of the song Love of the Common People but it failed to chart. It was only when Paul’s next single, Wherever I Lay My Hat (That’s My Home), hit the charts that the public at large revisited Common People.

Leaving Jamaica towards the end of the 1980s was not a straight-forward affair but one of the things that did happen was that Rico was invited, by Swiss musicians, to work on a reggae project in Europe. Around the same time he also met a Japanese musician called Kuubo, who specialized in reggae, and had been staying in Jamaica.

This was the beginning of huge affection for Rico in Japan. From all account the Japanese audience really took Rico to their hearts.

When, eventually, Rico returned to England work was now becoming more plentiful. He hooked up with a band called Jazz Jamaica.

Then from there, and from 1996 through to 2012, Rico became a member of Jools Holland and his much loved Rhythm and Blues Orchestra.

For 16 years Rico had the time of his life performing on annual tours and playing at a host of spectacular gigs and venues. Included was several visits to Warwick Arts Centre.

During his lifetime, Rico Rodriguez appears to have touched an awful lot of people. That is clearly evident to see by the amount of moving tributes I have read from close friends and fellow musicians alike. He also touched his listeners who enjoyed hearing him play.

One such tribute, in the form of a poem, was penned by Coventry-born poet, Trev Teasdel.

Born in Rico’s Trombone

I was born in Rico’s trombone, a raw note, bold with vibrato, with a message for rude boys.

I was shaped by his breath and disciplined with melody.

I travelled light in his trombone case, from Kingston Jamaica across the world on an offbeat journey.

I, a mere note in his notoriety, feeling his passion, obeying his precision, lighting up with his inspiration.

I was blown, headlong into Prince Buster’s Rocksteady ear, as he hit the beat in the studio heat.

I was noted in a jam with Jeremy Dammers,

I split the atom for the Special AKA, where Two Tones are better than one.

I was a note in Rico’s trombone – bold with rasping melody, strung out and staccato, vamping on the dance floor, headstrong and moving, captured on vinyl, a musical particle of the legendary article.

I was born in Rico’s trombone!

Trev Teasdel
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Mon Sep 21, 2015 11:00 am
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Sugarman
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Thanks grasshopper Smile

Rico's passing has been a massive loss though the music he left behind will keep us company for eternity.

Man From Wareika LP has always been a Pleasure to listen to, it doesn't sound new or old just perfect Smile
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Mon Sep 21, 2015 1:42 pm
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Sugarman
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Very touching words from Neville and Christine Staple about the late Rico Rodriguez near the end of the programme.

Broadcast: 07/09/2015

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p030rbkz
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Tue Sep 22, 2015 5:43 pm
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