b. Leighton Shervington, August 1950, Kingston, Jamaica, West Indies. In his early twenties Shervington joined a showband called Tomorrow’s Children. Fellow performers Ernie Smith and Tinga Stewart had enjoyed commercial success with ‘Duppy Or A Gunman’ and ‘Play De Music’, respectively. Both songs were sung in a heavy patois and enjoyed chart status. Inspired by this, Shervington sang the hit ‘Ram Goat Liver’, and the follow-up, ‘Dat’, the two of which were paradoxical stories of poverty disguised as comedy tunes, and went over the heads of many listeners. In 1976, when released in the UK, ‘Dat’ was a Top 5 hit for the newly formed Opal label. Trojan Records realized that they had licensed his earlier hit, ‘Ram Goat Liver’, and gave Shervington his second UK chart entry, peaking at number 35 two months after the success of ‘Dat’. He moved to Miami, Florida, where he began recording and in 1982 returned to the international market for the release of ‘Your Honour’, which entered the UK Top 20. His follow-up, ‘I Man Bitter’, and an album were not commercial successes.
- Kingston, Jamaica
- Aug 1950