Watch Toots and the Maytals’ new video for “Three Little Birds” ft. Ziggy Marley
Reggae/ska/rocksteady legend Toots Hibbert sadly passed away earlier this month, just weeks after releasing Got To Be Tough, the first Toots and the Maytals album in a decade. Several musicians paid tribute to Toots, and one of the first to write something was Ziggy Marley, who said Toots "was a father figure to me," and who contributed to Toots' cover of Ziggy's late father Bob Marley's "Three Little Birds" on Got to Be Tough. (Ringo Starr is on tambourine too.) Toots' version is a darker, fiery reinvention of the song and not just a faithful cover by any means, and today that cover gets a psychedelic animated video featuring depictions of Toots, Ziggy, and Ringo, and a scene where Mount Rushmore gets a classic reggae makeover.
The video ends with a quote from Toots: "I want to ask everyone to keep their focus in this time of wonders. Make such focus be of good faith, love each other, exercise brotherly and sisterly care for each other of all race, religion and creed..." Watch below.
The album came out on Trojan Jamaica, which was founded by Ringo's son Zak Starkey and Sharna "Sshh" Liguz, and which licensed its name for use from the legendary Trojan Records. The label gave a statement to Billboard, which reads:
A much loved Bob Marley classic with a Toots spin; the song is a testament to the positive message of Reggae, something we all need right now. Trojan Jamaica is honored to have collaborated with Toots, and to have Ziggy and Ringo guesting both on the track and in the video, which is the final chapter of the animated trilogy intended to lift spirits during these difficult times; a celebration of Toots and his ability to connect all through his music and his message.
Zak & Sshh are still so saddened by the loss of such a great life force, and would like to thank everyone involved in this release and to the countless fans and critics for recognizing and celebrating his legacy and music through out his life and beyond. He lived to make us move. But most of all, we want to thank Toots. The Man, the Music, the Legend; he will be greatly missed by us all. It’s still hard to comprehend he is no longer with us in the physical form but his music will live on forever.
Toots and I crossed paths many times throughout this journey, from my childhood to my manhood, and I was always humbled to be around his greatness, his soul, his life force. Today something is missing in this realm and I can feel it, a void in the connection, and I know I’m not alone. Those who truly knew this man know he was more than man. We will always miss his presence here on earth. JAH.
Ringo also gave a statement: "God bless Toots, a giant in reggae music. It was my pleasure to play tambourine for him. Peace and love to all his family."
Previously, The Rolling Stones, Jimmy Cliff, The Skatalites, No Doubt, Blondie, The Who, Rancid, Willie Nelson, Cat Stevens, Massive Attack, Phish's Trey Anastasio, Jeff Rosenstock, UB40, and several others paid tribute.