Ewart Beckford OD (born 21 September 1942), known by the stage name U-Roy, is a Jamaican vocalist and pioneer of toasting. U-Roy is noted for a melodic style of toasting applied with a highly developed sense of timing.
Ewart Beckford was born in Jones Town, Saint Andrews Parish, Kingston, Jamaica, on 21 September 1942. He was raised within a religious and musical family; his mother was an organist for the choir at a local Seventh Day Adventist church. The sobriquet U-Roy originated from a younger member of his family who found it difficult to pronounce his first name. Beckford attended Denham Town High School in Kingston. As a young man Beckford listened to the music of Louis Prima, James Brown, Ruth Brown, Fats Domino, Rufus Thomas, Smiley Lewis and was especially influenced by the vocal phrasing of Louis Jordan.
Inspired by Count Matchuki he started his professional career as a DJ in 1961 on Dickie Wong's sound system (originally called Doctor Dickies later changed to Dickies Dynamic) moving later to the Sir George the Atomic sound system. Beckford then worked on Sir Coxsone Dodd's sound system where he ran the number two set while King Stitt "The Ugly One" ran the main set. This was followed by a period with Sir Percy before he moved to King Tubby's Hometown Hi-Fi sound system. Beckford's first single "Dynamic Fashion Way" (1969) was a Keith Hudson production. It was followed by the Bunny Striker Lee production "Earth's Rightful Ruler" with Peter Tosh.
Beckford was preceded by the toasters Count Matchuki, King Stitt and Sir Lord Comic who themselves were influenced by the jive talk of the US disc jockeys that they heard on American radio stations whose broadcasts reached the Caribbean. Beckford was the first toaster to popularize the form through a series of successful releases on the Duke Reid label gaining a wider audience for toasting. This approach to production and the remixing of previously recorded tracks with a new vocal influenced the early hip-hop pioneers. #EwartBeckford #Uroy #deejay #theoriginator #reggae #dancehall #dub #jamaicalegend #soundsystem #toasting #coxonedodd #kingtubby #hifi rudelatinskaweb 🏆🎤🎤