Artist picture of Peter Tosh

Peter Tosh

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Biography

When Peter Tosh started out busking on the streets of Trentchtown, Jamaica with Bunny Wailer and Bob Marley, little did he know the enduring impact they'd have on the music world. The Wailers revolutionised reggae and Marley became an international icon, but Tosh left the band in 1974 after fracturing his skull in a car crash and falling out with the band and Island label boss Chris Blackwell. He turned solo with the campaigning record Legalize It (1976) - which featured a complimentary marijuana scented sticker - before signing to The Rolling Stones' label and collaborating with Mick Jagger and Keith Richards on the album Bush Doctor (1978). While Marley sang One Love, Tosh took a more direct political approach, calling for equality on Equal Rights (1977) and becoming the first artist to rage against the injustice of apartheid. Spiritualism and his Rastafarian beliefs were also a key part, and after releasing Mama Africa (1983) he turned away from the music industry to take inspiration from traditional African medicine men. In 1987 he was shot dead at his house in Jamaica by a gang of armed robbers, aged 42. He was posthumously awarded the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Performance for his last album No Nuclear War (1987) and he remains one of the greats of Jamaican music.

Artist biography compiled by BDS/West 10. All rights reserved