The Newport Folk Festival announced Friday that legendary reggae artist Toots and the Maytals will the the 2810 Folk Festival in Newport, RI. Toots Hibbert is one of the true and rightful architects of reggae music – so much so that Do the Reggay, a 1968 single by Toots and his group, The Maytals, is credited with giving the genre its name.
Classic songs written and recorded by Toots and the Maytals have been covered by the likes of The Clash, Amy Winehouse, Sublime, Pitbull, and Jay-Z – and the group was featured in reggae’s greatest breakthrough event – The Harder They Come, the 1972 film that became an international sensation.
Toots and the Maytals, originally called The Maytals, are a Jamaican musical group and one of the best known ska and rocksteady vocal groups. The Maytals were formed in the early 1960s and were key figures in popularizing reggae music. Frontman Toots Hibbert’s soulful vocal style has been compared to Otis Redding, and led him to be named one of the 100 Greatest Singers by Rolling Stone. Their 1968 single “Do the Reggay”, was the first song to first use the word “reggae”, naming the genre and introducing it to a global audience. As Island Records founder Chris Blackwell says, “The Maytals were unlike anything else…sensational, raw and dynamic.”
Toots and the Maytals will play the sold-out Newport Folk Festival on Sunday, July 29th!