Thursday 26 November, 2020

Former Dragonaire Courtney Robb dies at 71

Courtney Robb

Courtney Robb

Musician Courtney Robb, a former member of Jamaican soca band, Byron Lee and The Dragonaires, passed away last weekend in Florida. 

He had been having health problems - complications with his kidney - over the past six weeks. He was 71.

"He had kidney problems in 2006 and he had a kidney transplant in 2008, and he began to have few problems with the kidney last month. I am sorry to hear that he has passed away," Frankie Campbell, chairman of the Jamaica Association of Vintage Artists and Affiliates (JAVAA) and bass player for Fab 5 band, told Loop News

He died leaving behind his wife, three boys and a girl. 

"His wife had a stroke, both of them were in a home. She had been taking care of him and then she got a major stroke but she's still alive, and now he's gone," Campbell added. 

Robb, a bassist, was a member of the legendary Byron Lee and the Dragonaires, for over 35 years, and played on major soca songs such as 'Tiney Winey', and 'Dancehall Soca'.

Robb, who had played bass with The Dragonaires from the early 1970s until 2006, had been living in Florida for the past 14 years. He left the band because of kidney problems. 

He, however, underwent surgery for a kidney transplant a decade ago, and, despite challenges, had still been actively sharing his knowledge of music with youngsters in Palm Bay, Florida. He had been teaching them how to play the keyboard and bass guitar. He was also a bass player at the Palm Bay Methodist Church.

Campbell recalled that Robb was also the keyboard player in the Hell’s Angels band in the late 1960s and worked at Dynamic Sounds in the days while still a part of The Dragonaires.

-----Claude Mills

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