Augustus Pablo's legacy lives on through son Addis Image

by Biko Kennedy

Augustus Pablo sadly passed away 14 years ago, but his son, Addis Pablo, is carrying on his father's legacy, channeling his father's melodica prowess.

"He's the one who did everything for me, so the fact that he's not physically here I have to do my part promoting him and playing his music," explains Addis in a 2012 interview with the Jamaica Observer.

Addis went on noting that the demand for his father's catalogue in Europe and Japan remain strong, but recently a fresh demographic has discovered his music.

"It's a resurgence as far as a younger generation of people, like college age students (in the United States) who might hear a band play his music and find out about him," he confessed. "There are new markets opening up, like in South America as well."

Whenever Addis performs, he says he feels the spirit of his father on stage with a celestial connection only he understands. 

Augustus Pablo (real name Horace Swaby) recorded some of the most creative sounds in Reggae including the song Java and the classic albums, King Tubby Meets Rockers Uptown and East of The River Nile.

The son of respected accountants, Pablo's talent was evident from his years as a student at Kingston College (KC). While still in school, he recorded as a keyboardist/melodica player for producers Herman Chin-Loy, Lee 'Scratch' Perry and KC schoolmate Gussie Clarke.

In 1971 he got the big break with the mystic instrumental Java, co-produced by Clive Chin, another KC 'old boy' and son of producer Vincent 'Randy' Chin. The following year, Pablo and his brother Garth formed the Rockers label which would produce a number of budding roots artistes like Jacob Miller, Hugh Mundell, Junior Reid and Yami Bolo.

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