[Photo: American singer and songwriter Johnny Nash poses in a park in London, 1972. By Michael Putland / Getty Images]
Johnny Nash had no particular episode of personal hardship in mind when he composed “I Can See Clearly Now” in the early 1970s, though over the years it has struck a firm chord with generations who appreciate its feeling of new hope emerging from the despair: “I can see clearly now the rain has gone / I can see all obstacles in my way / Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind / It’s gonna be a bright, bright, sunshine-y day.”
He died last week at age 80.
Nash was American but spent time living in Jamaica in the mid-1960s, and the island’s influence on his music came to the fore in 1968, when his rock-steady compositions “You Got Soul” and “Hold Me Tight” were Top 10 hits in the UK, helping to kickstart a period of mainstream interest in reggae that remains to this day.
His reggae-fied version of Sam Cooke’s “Cupid” made it to No. 6 in the UK the following year, followed by “Stir it Up,” written for him, and later reclaimed, by his friend Bob Marley. That was a UK No. 13 in 1972, only months before the release of “I Can See Clearly Now.”
Open in Spotify
This playlist includes many of Johnny Nash’s recordings, songs by him, Bob Marley, and other early reggae artists, plus many of the cuts that dominated the radio in 1972 alongside Johhny Nash’s enduring song of hope.
Hope you enjoy this tribute collection. Next week I’ll be back with a more “seasonal” offering.
Until such time, stay safe sane, and kind… and vote!
Credit: Source link