B. B. Seaton, Reggae Singer And Member Of The Gaylads, Dead At 79

(DANCEHALLMAG) – Reggae singer and songwriter B. B. Seaton passed away at the age of 79 on Monday (March 4) in London, England.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia Grange, confirmed his death in a release. “If ever a variety of musical talent resided in one man, it was in B. B. Seaton,” Grange said. “He was a qualified musician, and a singer of exceptional quality who led one of Jamaica’s outstanding musical groups, The Gaylads. He was one of the most prolific songwriters to hit the local scene, and a record producer of note.”

Seaton, born Harris Lloyd Seaton, had a prolific career spanning decades, leaving an undeniable mark on Jamaican music, particularly with his contributions to the iconic group The Gaylads.

His journey began in the early 1960s at producer Clement Dodd’s Studio One, recording solo and then forming the duo Winston & Bibby with Winston Delano Stewart. This duo, joined by Maurice Roberts, eventually became The Gaylads, but Seaton briefly ventured off to join The Astronauts before rejoining the group at the tail end of the ska era.

It was during his second stint with The Gaylads that Seaton blossomed, co-writing numerous hits for the group, including Lady With The Red Dress, You Should Never Do That, Hard to Confess, Over The Rainbow, and My Jamaican Girl.

The group released four albums, including Soul Beat (1967), Fire & Rain (1970) and Understanding (1979).

“We used unison in harmony. Not everybody was doing that…Delano [Stewart] was a magnificent singer; Maurice [Roberts] was very talented,” B. B. told the Jamaica Observer in 2016.

Stewart left the group, while Roberts passed away in 2015 at age 70.

Seaton, Harold Davis (formerly of The Sensations), and Dennis Spencer made up the current Gaylads.

As a solo artist, Seaton had over 15 albums, including Dancing Shoes (1974), Colour is not the Answer (1976), I’m Aware of Love (1979), Everyday People (1985), Wish Me Luck (1989), Just One Moment (1993), In Control (1995), Experienced Lover (1996), Unbeaten (2002), and Reggae Land (2006).

The Culture Minister noted that “in one man was wrapped up a whole lot of music for himself and for many others.” He penned tracks for artists like Ken Boothe, The Melodians, Marcia Griffiths, Dennis Brown, Freddie McGregor, Aswad, UB40, Delroy Wilson, and many more.

“For all of us. Harris Lloyd Seaton…BB, as we will always remember him, had a tremendous influence especially on the Jamaican music genres, ska and rocksteady. My sincerest sympathy to his wife, Sue, the rest of his family, relatives, friends, associates and to the music fraternity. Rest in Peace, BB Seaton,” Grange added.