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Stabroek News

Producer Joe Gibbs dead at 65
published: Tuesday | February 26, 2008

Joel 'Joe Gibbs' Gibson - contributed

RECORD producer Joel 'Joe Gibbs' Gibson, whose partnership with singer Dennis Brown yielded a string of hit songs during the 1970s, died last Thursday at the University Hospital of the West Indies.

Gibbs' son, Rocky, told The Gleaner that his father died shortly after suffering a heart attack. He was 65 years old.

The Montego Bay-born Gibbs began producing on his Amalgamated label in the 1960s. His first major hit was singer Roy Shirley's Hold Them, but it was in the next decade that Gibbs really hit his stride.

Brown, a former prodigy, cut a series of songs for Gibbs that were rarely off the charts. These included Money In My Pockets, Should I, Stay at Home, Love Has Found Its Way and How Could I Live.

Other productions

Gibbs also produced Culture's massive Two Sevens Clash, George Nooks' Tribal War and Althea and Donna's Uptown Top Ranking which made the British pop charts in 1977. His last major hit was singer J.C. Lodge's Someone Loves You Honey, a song originally done by African-American country singer Charlie Pride.

Bass player Lloyd Parkes was a senior member of Gibbs' house band, The Professionals. He said while Gibbs was an astute businessman, he was not the great producer many believed.

"I would call him an executive producer, most of the production was done by Errol Thompson and the musicians," Parkes said.

Thompson was the engineer at Gibbs' Retirement Road studio. He died in 2004.

Gibbs is survived by 11 children.

Lloyd Parkes

Dennis Brown

Lloyd Parkes' Joe Gibbs Top 10

(1) Stay at Home - Dennis Brown

(2) Love Has Found Its Way - Dennis Brown

(3) Jah Jah (See Dem a Come) - Culture

(4) Should I - Dennis Brown

(5) Uptown Top Ranking - Althea and Donna

(6) Visions - Dennis Brown

(7) Foul Play - Dennis Brown

(8) Fortyleg - Prince Mohammed

(9) How Could I Leave - Dennis Brown

(10) Someone Loves You Honey - J.C. Lodge

Remembering Joe Gibbs

  • Drummer Sly Dunbar, bassist Lloyd Parkes, keyboardist Franklyn 'Bubbler' Waul, guitarist Winston 'Bo Pee' Bowen and saxophonist Dean Fraser were all members of The Professionals, the house band at Joe Gibbs' studio.
  • Although he recorded several hits for producer Clement Dodd and Winston 'Niney' Holness, Dennis Brown's most fruitful period as a singer was with Joe Gibbs.
  • Visions and Words of Wisdom, produced by Gibbs, are considered Dennis Brown's best albums.
  • Gibbs also produced Love Has Found Its Way, Brown's album for A&M Records.

    Mick Hucknall of Simply Red covered Stay at Home for Sly and Robbie's Grammy-winning Friends album.

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