Ray Watts (singer)

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Ray Watts
Ray Watts 1985 WIK.jpg
Ray Watts performing with Beshara, 1985
Background information
Also known as Ray Beshara, Ray (Beshara) Watts
Born (1957-01-26)January 26, 1957
Guadeloupe
Died 12 February 2000(2000-02-12) (aged 43)
Genres Reggae, Lovers rock, roots reggae, soul, dance
Occupation(s) Musician, Singer, Songwriter
Instruments Vocals, Guitar, Bass
Years active 1976–2000
Labels Celmaw Records
Associated acts Beshara, Pato Banton, Reggae Revolution
Website

www.besharamusic.com

Beshara on Myspace
Notable instruments
Vocals, Guitar

Ray "Beshara" Watts (26 January 1957 – 12 February 2000), was born on the island of Guadeloupe and was a singer, solo artist and songwriter who lived in Birmingham, England . He was also the lead singer, principal songwriter and a core-founding member of the British reggae band Beshara.[1] As part of Beshara, Ray had success in the UK reggae charts and supported many artists, whilst making several television appearances.[2][3][4]

Ray began his solo career in the early 90s and worked with many different record producers. During that time, he travelled to America and worked with the Inner City record producer, Kevin Saunderson. These recordings are yet to be released. He also performed guitar on the Inner City single "Till We Meet Again (Reese In Rio Mix)".

Ray then featured on the recordings "Gotta Be A Change" and "United We Stand" with Pato Banton whilst supporting or sharing the stage with artists such as Pato Banton, China Black, CJ Lewis and Adeva.

Watts died in 2000. He was well known and respected within the Birmingham music scene.[5] In 2001, the ex-Beshara band members arranged a memorial tribute concert for Ray Watts at the Irish Centre, Birmingham. Steel Pulse and Beshara along with many other artists from Birmingham, performed at the concert.[5] In the same year, Pato Banton’s album "Life is Miracle", which featured a song written by and featuring Ray Watts called "United We Stand", received a Grammy nomination for Best Reggae Album.[6][7] The song has also featured on the Pato Banton albums, “Universal Love” and “Time Come” (Brazil Version).[8]

Discography[edit]

  • Ray (Beshara) Watts - "Shadow of Love (92 Mix)" (1992) Klassic Records
  • Ray Beshara - "Bring Back The Love" (1993) Pharoah Records

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Reggae, steady and rarin’ to go", Daily News, 9 January 1985, p. 12
  2. ^ "Rockers Roadshow", TV Times, 16 December 1983,
  3. ^ Here and Now Programme 172
  4. ^ At Least The Titanic Had a Good Band
  5. ^ a b "Ray Watts Memorial", Enterprise, February 2001, p. 4
  6. ^ 43rd Annual Grammy Awards
  7. ^ Pato Banton Life Is A Miracle
  8. ^ Universal Love