Musician wants national award for The Abyssinians

April 23, 2024
The Abyssinians
The Abyssinians

Prince Manning, whose father and uncles are founders of roots-reggae group The Abyssinians, believes they deserve a national award.

The group is best known for the seminal song, Satta Massagana. Manning is drummer for the quartet's band, which also includes his brothers Judea on bass and Andrew on keyboards. He said The Abyssinians have never got their due in Jamaica.

"Dem deserve dat (national award) long time, 'cause yuh have a few other people come through an' di milestone dat dem man ya reach, dem don't get no award. Di business now is like, if yuh don't rub shoulders with certain people dem don't regard yuh. But wi give thanks dat wi still standing an' a do wi thing," said Manning.

His father, Donald, is still a member of The Abyssinians, which was formed in Jones Town during the late 1960s. The original line-up also included his brothers Carlton and Lynford, as well as Bernard Collins, who was lead vocalist on most of their hit songs, including Satta Massagana and Declaration of Rights.

The current line-up also includes former Arnett Gardens and Jamaica footballer George 'Baldhead' Henry; and Festival Song Competition winners Everton Pessoa and Nazzle Man.

The Abyssinians are headliners for Musical Elegance, a show that takes place April 28 at Stella Maris in St Andrew. Also to be featured are George Nooks, Errol Lee, Harold Davis, DiMario McDowell and Maria Myrie.

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