Wednesday World Beat: Peter Tosh
Words By Greg Molitor (ReMIND Photography)
Today we celebrate the life and musical offerings that Peter Tosh (born Winston Hubert McIntosh) graciously gave to us throughout his career. Nicknamed ‘Steppin’ Razor’, Tosh and his politically passionate approach to making music inspired a curious new generation of Reggae fans. Unfortunately like many of the musical geniuses who fell before him, his passing was the sort of tragedy that defies all logical explanation. Gone too soon, he was, but what Tosh left behind for us still connects humanity throughout the world, one beat at a time.
During this backstage interview from 1979‘s Reggae Sunsplash Festival, Tosh speaks of the linkage between reggae and spirituality. Radiating with calm confidence, he clearly understood the universal power of his music.
Here we find Tosh performing “Walk and Don’t Look Back” with The Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger. Tosh, the first artist signed to The Rolling Stones’ record label, gained a much larger fan base from his relationship with the British superstars who happened to be enamored with reggae music at the time. The partnership lasted three years and was often tumultuous, but because of Tosh’s work with the Stones, millions of people have had the opportunity to hear his fiery message.
Tosh’s most famous work is Legalize It, a solo debut album released in 1976. With Legalize It, he separated himself from his previous work with Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer and proclaimed to the world that he was indeed an artist that could stand on his own principles and ideological beliefs. Above is a live performance of the album’s title track from 1976. Always a crowd favorite during a Peter Tosh performance, the anthemic tune continues to bring together marijuana legislation reformers, reggae fans as well as general music enthusiasts across the globe. Long live Peter Tosh!