Bunny Rugs song released ahead of OD award today - Gregory Isaacs, Shabba, Mutabaruka, Chris Chin also to be honoured
Former Third World lead singer William 'Bunny Rugs' Clark will be posthumously awarded with the Order of Distinction (OD) in the rank of officer by the Jamaican Government today and, as a part of the celebration of the icon's life, veteran record label Young Veteran Records is set to release a brand new Bunny Rugs single titled Let's Pray.
The record features Luciano and was incomplete at the time of his death. However, having invested time in the production process, Young Veteran producer Sheldon Pennicott believes that given the ongoing celebration of Bunny Rugs' contribution to the music industry, the atmosphere is right for the release of the final cut of Let's Pray.
"The song wasn't complete. We planned to use Luciano and we never got around to voicing him, but, as they say, good things never happen before it's time. With time, we became more seasoned producers and were able to give the production the time it needed," he told The Gleaner.
The producer also recalled working with the late icon, highlighting that he was a perfectionist. He also expressed that Bunny Rugs is extremely deserving of the accolades.
"It was great. His dedication to perfection was really incredible. It was a good learning experience. It's important to celebrate his life because celebrating him means we both celebrate his memory as well as his life achievements. Mr Rugs' contributions as a lead singer in Third World and as a solo artiste were endless. His sound was unique and well loved," he said.
The producer also disclosed that aside from Let's Pray, he has other songs for Bunny Rugs since they worked together for several years. Fans of the icon may purchase Let's Pray on online outlets like iTunes and Amazon. Young Veterans will also release an album titled Rhatid in 2017, and that project will also feature Bunny Rugs' Let's Pray.
"He and his group, Third World, along with many others, have paved a platform for Jamaican artistes and producers who are creating reggae music. Bunny Rugs is a pioneer in the industry and will be forever missed," he said.
The late Gregory Isaacs also made the cut for this year's national honours, along with Shabba Ranks, Mutabaruka and Chris Chin of VP Records. Brother and former manager of Gregory Isaacs, the outspoken Ruddy Isaacs, told The Gleaner that the Night Nurse singer would have been proud of the moment. He also proclaimed Gregory Isaacs to be the real 'king of lovers rock'.
"Him would be more than happy. Mi si man weh come up inna di '90s get OD, and Gregory been singing from 1968, so him deserve it. Him is the rightful king of lovers rock and was the first to coin the name in England," he said.
Gregory Isaacs' widow, June Isaacs, is set to represent the icon at the ceremony to be held at King's House today.
"I feel happy and proud. I have been to shows with him and it is always a pleasure to see how the audience responds to his music. He is always professing love through his music, and fans, especially women, are always drawn to that," she said.