Reggae and pioneer U-Roy has died, according to Jamaican media sources. He was 78.
Born Ewart Beckford in 1942, U-Roy (also known as Daddy U-Roy) was one of the first "toasters," Jamaican DJs who chanted along with the records they were playing, and he was also one of the first to become famous for it, crossing over from sound system to chart-topping artist. (He was not the very first but he crowned himself "The Originator.") He had early hits with classics like “Wear You to the Ball,” “Wake the Town” and “Rule the Nation” and later signed to Virgin, releasing Dread in a Babylon, Natty Rebel and many more.