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Tabby Diamond death: Reggae artist killed in Jamaica drive-by shooting, aged 67

The Independent logo The Independent 31/03/2022 Maanya Sachdeva
Reggae music legend Donald “Tabby” Shaw died in a drive-by shooting in Jamaica on 29 March  - Steve Black/Shutterstock © Steve Black/Shutterstock

Reggae music legend Donald “Tabby” Shaw died in a drive-by shooting in Jamaica on 29 March

- Steve Black/Shutterstock

Reggae group The Mighty Diamonds’ lead vocalist Donald “Tabby” Shaw, 67, has been killed in a drive-by shooting in Jamaica.

The shooting, which occurred on McKinley Crescent in St Andrew, Kingston on Tuesday (29 March), left one other person dead and three others injured.

The second victim, Owen Beckford, is reportedly a relative of Shaw’s. Reports suggested two men and a woman are currently being treated for gunshot wounds.

In a statement to Loop News, St Andrew Police Division’s senior superintendent Kirk Ricketts said a preliminary investigation indicated the shooting might be connected to an ongoing local gang conflict.

Ricketts said police are probing whether the alleged criminal activities of Shaw’s son, who is currently in police custody for murder, may have resulted in the legendary reggae singer being targeted.

As per the statement, Shaw and Beckford were standing with a group of people at a shop in McKinley Crescent when an unidentified gunman opened fire on them, hitting five people.

Tabby was reportedly struck in the face multiple times before being rushed to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The Mighty Diamonds group formed in 196, with Shaw comprising a third of the legendary reggae band alongside Lloyd “Judge” Ferguson and Fitzroy “Bunny” Simpson. Over time, all three band mates added the word “Diamond” to their names.

Known for classic reggae hits “Pass the Kouchie” and “I Need a Roof”, the Mighty Diamonds were conferred with the national honour of Order of Distinction in the Officer Class in 2021.

The group catapulted into the spotlight in 1976 following the release of their debut album Right Time.

Jamaica’s culture minister Olivia “Babsy” Grange condemned the “senseless” killing that she said left a gaping void in the country’s music landscape, local news reported.

Lukes Morgan, a member of the Grammy-winning Jamaican reggae band Morgan Heritage, expressed remorse over Shaw’s death on Twitter, writing: “[No] this don’t make any sense. RIP to the great Tabby Diamond, one of the legends of our music.”

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