February 7, 2024
Atalented singer-songwriter, Pluto Shervington is synonymous with I Man Born Yah, the song that summed up a tumultuous time in Jamaican history.
Last week he was laid to rest in Miami, the city where he settled in 1978 — one year after that controversial single was released.
On February 4, many of the Jamaicans who moved to the Magic City after Prime Minister Michael Manley’s infamous “five flights a day” to Miami speech, gathered at Crandon Park in Key Biscayne to salute the popular artiste who made his mark in Jamaica and South Florida.
Shervington died on January 19 at age 73.
Among the performers were singers Wayne Armond, Ed Robinson, and Ernie Smith, as well as saxophonist Conrad Sax Melody. Armond did a clever rendition of
I Man Born Yah (changed to I Man on Yah), noting Shervington’s love for Jamaica, while Robinson delivered an acoustic version of Bob Dylan’s Knocking on Heaven’s Door.
Smith offered a sprightly set that defied his 78 years. He started with his All For Jesus, followed by a rocking medley that included Wings of A Dove and A Little More Oil in My Lamp, songs done at Federal Records, the company where he and Shervington recorded many hits during the 1970s.
Proclamations were presented to Shervington’s family by Oliver Mair, Jamaica’s consul general to Miami, and attorney Marlon Hill.
Marco Brown, who knew Shervington for over 50 years, was not surprised at the turnout.
“It showed how much of an icon and how much Pluto was loved. The reception actually took place at Crandon Park, which is across the road from Sundays On The Bay [where Shervington performed in the 1980s]. The location was synonymous with Pluto and South Florida, a Pluto landmark so to speak,” he told the Jamaica Observer.
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