Terry Hall, the lead vocalist of The Specials, an English band that popularized 2 tones and ska, has passed away. According to a post on the band’s official Facebook page, Hall passed away “after a short illness,” and the band has since posted the news on all of its verified social media platforms.
“His music and his performances encapsulated the very essence of life… the joy, the pain, the humor, the fight for justice, but mostly the love,” the post reads, calling Hall “our beautiful friend, brother and one of the most brilliant singers, songwriters, and lyricists this country has ever produced.”
Hall is said to have died at the age of 63, leaving behind his film producer wife Lindy Heymann, and their sons Leo and Felix Hall. The Specials formed in Coventry, England in 1977, and their self-titled first album became a hit in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Jerry Dammers, Roddy “Radiation” Byers, Neville Staple, John Bradbury, Dick Cuthell, and Rico Rodriguez were the initial members of The Specials, along with Hall, who replaced singer Tim Strickland soon after the band’s foundation.
Famous songs by The Specials include “Gangsters” and “Ghost Town,” the latter of which spent three weeks at the top of the UK singles chart in 1981 and an additional ten weeks in the top forty. Additionally well-known for their outspoken resistance to racial injustice, the band regularly offered political and social reform commentary on the scene in England and abroad. According to the band’s official website, “Forty years ago the Specials symbolized the condition of the country — seven voices as one from a typically destitute UK town.”
In addition to his solo work and contributions to the bands Fun Boy Three (1981) and The Colourfield (1984), best remembered for their single “Thinking of You,” Hall has also been involved in a number of other musical projects during his career. Eventually, in 2008, he reassembled The Specials for a tour and new songs (the band had previously reunited in the ’90s, but Hall was not a member of that incarnation). The current lineup of The Specials consists of Lynval Golding, Horace Panter, John Bradbury, Neville Staple, Roddy Byers, and Nikolaj Torp Larsen.
The eighth studio album by The Specials, “Encore,” was released in 2019, and it contained new material with Hall as a singer for the first time since 1981’s “Ghost Town.” The vocalist “frequently exited the stage at the conclusion of The Specials’ life-affirming gigs with three words… ‘Love Love Love,'” according to one of the many tributes to Hall posted on Monday.
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English band The Specials, responsible for spreading the gospel of 2 tones and ska, has announced the death of lead singer Terry Hall. Hall died “after a brief illness,” according to a statement on the band’s official Facebook page, and the band has already announced his death on all of its verified social media sites.
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