Reggae group gets its 'eek' on
The reggae artist Eek-A-Mouse has been rocking Jamaica since the mid 1970s. The 6-foot-6-inch Jamaican was born with the name Ripton Joseph Hylton Nov. 19, 1957. Young Hylton grew up in Kingston's rough neighborhood, Trenchtown. Kingston is the c...
The reggae artist Eek-A-Mouse has been rocking Jamaica since the mid 1970s.
The 6-foot-6-inch Jamaican was born with the name Ripton Joseph Hylton Nov. 19, 1957. Young Hylton grew up in Kingston's rough neighborhood, Trenchtown. Kingston is the capital of Jamaica.
Hylton began his singing career by performing to his peers in primary school, but by the age of 21, he was playing in Kingston's local clubs. During this time, Hylton was recording a few singles under his real name before switching over to Eek-A-Mouse.
He changed his musical name after a racehorse that he frequently bet on but lost, when he finally bet against the horse, it won a race.
Eek-A-Mouse is an originator of a particular form of reggae, which has come to be known as "sing-jay" or "toasting" in Jamaica. "Sing-jay" is a combination of singing and dee-jaying that turns the mouth into an instrument.
In 1980, he released his breakthrough album "Wah Do Dem," which exposed him to the entire island of Jamaica.
In 1981, he teamed up with producer Henry "Junjo" Lawes and recorded hits such as "Once a Virgin," "Modeling Queen" and "Virgin Girl."
"Virgin Girl" is a slow paced song with a steady classic reggae beat.
He was one of the main acts for the 1981 Jamaican Sunsplash Festival, which was in mourning after the death of reggae icon Bob Marley. Eek-A-Mouse's set cheered up the otherwise somber crowd.
Since his 1980 hit "Wah Do Dem," Hylton has recorded 17 CDs. His lasted musical endeavor was the release of the 2004 CD "Eek-A-Speeka." The album features the songs "I'll be Waiting," "Joey Joey" and "Nuh Lie Down."
Eek-A-Mouse is currently on the "Out of Exile" tour in the United States.