Irving Burgie , who co-wrote the enduring Harry Belafonte hit “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song),” has died at 95. The Brooklyn-born composer helped popularize Caribbean music and his songs have sold more than 100 million records worldwide.
At the Barbados Independence Day Parade on Saturday, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley announced Burgie died Friday.
commercial. “Day-O” was also the wake-up call for the astronauts on two Space Shuttle missions in the 1990s. When a superstar list of music royalty gathered to film the “We Are the World” video in 1985, most burst into a playful version of “Day-O” in between takes. Lil’ Wayne used a sample of “Day-O” in his “6 Foot 7 Foot.”
He served in an all-black U.S. Army battalion in World War II and used GI Bill funds to pay for music studies. Burgie studied at the Juilliard School of Music, University of Arizona and University of Southern California. He became a folk singer using the stage name “Lord Burgess” and performed the circuit between New York and Chicago, making his New York nightclub debut at the Village Vanguard in 1954.Read more: The Associated Press
NPR Choice pageRIP, thank you for the music RIP
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