Renowned singer, songwriter, musician, and producer Sugar Minott, born as Lincoln Barrington Minott in Kingston, Jamaica. He was born on May 25th 1956 and died July 10th 2010. He played a pivotal role in pioneering the development of reggae music. His immersion in the reggae scene began in his formative years, growing up near a dancehall where the best sounds of the time resonated.
Exposure to this vibrant environment inspired Minott to build a musical repertoire, leading him to participate in talent contests such as the one organized by the Little Theatre Company. Upon completing his education, he ventured into the music industry, selling records and performing with the sound system known as Sound of Silence Keytone.
Minott eventually established his own sound system named Black Roots, which later gave rise to the creation of Youthman Promotion. In 1969, he collaborated with Tony Tuff and Derrick Howard to form the group the African Brothers. Tony served as the lead singer, and the group recorded for Micron Music under the management of Mick Johnson and Ronny Burke, known for their association with Sunsplash.
The African Brothers also worked with other notable producers, including Keith Weston, Winston “Marrytone” Blake, Rupie Edwards, and Coxsone Dodd. Despite producing tracks like “Lead us father,” “Mystery of nature,” “Party time,” and “Righteous kingdom,” the group faced challenges due to the strong cultural content of their lyrics. This led to the decision to pursue individual careers.
In 1974, Sugar Minott joined forces with acclaimed producer Coxsone Dodd of “Studio One.” His initial hits for Studio One, including “Vanity,” “Mr. DC,” “House is not a Home,” and “Hang on Natty,” marked the beginning of his solo career and resulted in his first solo album, “Live Loving.”
In 1979, Minott departed from Studio One to establish his own label, “Black Roots,” laying the groundwork for the Youth Promotion crew. This venture saw the recording of artists like Little John, Triston Palmer, Barry Brown, and Tony Tuff.
Youth Promotion, originating in the Maxfield Park area of Kingston, Jamaica, emerged as a prominent Ghetto sound, providing an outlet for local youths to showcase their talents. Founded by Sugar Minott, the sound system became a platform for artists such as Junior Reid, Yami Bolo, Don Angelo, the late Tenor Saw, Nitty Gritty, and Garnet Silk, who made his debut recording for the Black Roots Label. The list of artists associated with Youthman Promotion includes Tony Rebel, Colorman, Daddy Freddie, Johnny Osbourne, Steve “Shalom” Harper, and numerous others who contributed to its dominance in the Dancehall scene.