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» BREAKING NEWS, Featured » BOB MARLEY’S KEYBOARD PLAYER EARL ‘WYA’ LINDO DIES AT 64!

BOB MARLEY’S KEYBOARD PLAYER EARL ‘WYA’ LINDO DIES AT 64!

BY BRIAN BONITTO­—
Associate Editor —

BOB Marley’s keyboard player Earl “Wya” Lindo passed away in a London hospital on Monday. He was 64.

Lennie Chen, The Wailers’ manager, confirmed his death to the Jamaica Observer yesterday.

“I got the call from his manager on Monday. He said Wya had stomach issues … He’s been sick, on and off. He had been complaining about stomach pains and went in hospital… I don’t think he lasted a couple of hours in hospital. It’s sad!” he said.

Earl 'Wya' Lindo

Earl ‘Wya’ Lindo

Chen added that he last saw Lindo in March when he was part of The Wailers’ three-week tour of the United Kingdom.

“Wya was part of that 15-show tour. With no rehearsals, Wya came in and mash up the place. He was excited in coming on the road with us,” said Chen from his Florida base.

Marcia Griffiths, a member of Marley’s harmony group, the I Three, remembers Lindo as a “great musician”.

Earl Lindo & Bob Marley

Earl Lindo & Bob Marley

“He had a signature sound. Just like how you hear Jackie Mittoo, Wya had a different and unique sound. He was the best musician, and mi nah just say that because him dead — every musician can tell you. Bob Marley did love him sound, that’s why he had two keyboard players, Tyrone Downie and Wya,” she said.

“No keyboard man can shuffle like him. When you watch him, his hands look like it’s not going to the beat, but the sound is perfect.”

Marcia Griffiths remembers Wya as a great musician

Marcia Griffiths remembers Wya as a great musician

Griffiths remembers an incident involving Lindo on Bob Marley and The Wailers’ Uprising Tour at Madison Square Garden in New York, in September 1980.

“Wya was late for the Madison Square Garden concert. We had started without him. During the performance, Bob a look ’round for him; no Wya. Bob very uncomfortable. When we eventually saw him, he was trying to come on stage and the police beat him up. Bob was happy to see him when he got through to the stage but was very disappointed that the police punched him up. But when you talk about humility, that is Wya. I’ve never known a human being as humble as him,” said Griffiths.

Bob Marley The Wailers

Bob Marley The Wailers

Days after the gig, Marley collapsed in Central Park while jogging, and was told to immediately cancel the United States leg of the tour. He however, instead flew to Pittsburgh to perform what would be his final performance. Lindo was part of the band.

Marley died in May 1981 of cancer.

Earl “Wya” Lindo is survived by a wife and children.

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