Sunday, August 20, 2006

JAH Bless Joseph Hill

I received some sad news this morning that a great singer and inspiration in the Rastafari movement passed away yesterday, Joseph Hill of the reggae group Culture. I remember the day long ago when a bredren of mine first introduced me to Culture's music and after hearing Joseph Hill's conscious, heartical, and thoughtful lyrics I had a very strong respect and admiration for him. I could listen to a Culture tune and come out better for it. He was one of the classic artists from the golden age of reggae, having had a firm foundation, and still continued to tour and provide new music to both his people in Jamaica and internationally. He never sold out or bowed down, he just continued to speak the Truth and share the message. Listening to Father Joseph's music you felt he was speaking directly from the heart with much love and wisdom, like a teacher gently schooling the Rasta children. I deeply regret having never seen him perform as I remember having a couple of opportunities to catch a show. However Joseph Hill's voice will forever be immortalized on the many albums that Culture released since the 1970's and his teachings and commentary will resonate in the hearts of his Rastafari fans. JAH Bless Joseph Hill, a true Rastaman, troddin' to Mt. Zion. Farewell,"Humble African". You will be missed, but Rasta never die, Selassie I!


Joseph Hill
January 22, 1949 - August 19, 2006

"I was travelling up the mountains one day
And suddenly I heard the voice come to I&I say ay
Behold I come quickly to pay every man
According to the work that he have done

And I know that it was the voice
The voice of the Most High...
And I know, yes I know, that it was the voice
The voice of the Most High...
Should Behold
Behold... I come quickly
Hear what he say to one and all!
Behold... I come quickly"

- Joseph Hill (Culture)