The funeral service for veteran Jamaican singer, Highland ‘Dobby’ Dobson, will be held this Saturday, August 22, 2020 in Florida, where he resided. His brother Colin Morais confirmed to The Gleaner that the thanksgiving service will start at 11 a.m. at the Village United Methodist Church in North Fort Lauderdale.
Dobby Dobson passed away on Tuesday, July 21 at the age of 78 at Broward Health Hospital in Coral Springs, Florida, from coronavirus-related complications.
Nicknamed ‘Loving Pauper’ after one of his better-known songs, Dobson was renowned internationally, and his death made headlines in the CARICOM Today and several online platforms, including the New York Times. The writer, Steven Kurutz, included the Jamaican singer’s death in a column which noted, “This obituary is part of a series about people who have died in the coronavirus pandemic.” He quoted David Katz, author of Solid Foundation: An Oral History of Reggae (2003) as saying in a phone interview that, “Mr Dobson was quite a significant figure in the evolution of Jamaican popular music.” He noted that “although Mr Dobson was best known for sentimental ballads and cover songs, Mr Katz said, if you scratch the surface, you find a diverse output”.
In paying tribute shortly after his passing, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange stated, “Dobby Dobson, who people called the ‘Loving Pauper’, which was the title of his singular hit song, got involved in music from his schoolboy days and was outstanding as a member of the Kingston College choir. He progressed to become one of Jamaica’s most popular exponents of rocksteady music and became a producer of note at the same time. He will be greatly missed by us all and I wish to express condolences to his relatives, friends and associates.”
Dobby Dobson was born on July 5, 1942 in Kingston, Jamaica. He attended Central Branch Elementary School, Kingston College and the College of Arts, Science and Technology, where he earned an associate degree.
His passion was music, which took him all over the world as an entertainer with his reggae style of music. He was active on Jamaican charts during the 1970s with covers of Brook Benton’s Endlessly and That Wonderful Sound, done originally by Tom Jones.
He was known for his quick wit, infectious smile and kind spirit. Dobson became a Christian after the death of his mother in 2000 and recorded inspirational albums such as Love Songs For Jesus and You Raised me Up.
He is survived by his children, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces and nephews and a host of friends.
Dobby Dobson was awarded the Order of Distinction in 2011 for his sterling contribution to Jamaican music.