Marcia "Pinky" Higgs, a/k/a "Higgsy," is the daughter
of the internationally acclaimed "Father Of Reggae Music," Joe Higgs. She began her musical mission at age 16, as a solo act,
with debut recordings, "Drifting Love," and "Sea Of Love," (both adapted) for the various artists album, "Juvenile
Delinquent." This album was produced by renown Bob Marley & The Wailers Ace Bass Player, Aston "Familyman" Barrett,
who happens to be the husband of her sister, Angella "Dimples" Higgs-Barrett. "Juvenile Delinquent" was produced at Tuff
Gong Recording Studio and distributed by VP Records on the Clappers Label.
"When I took my personal copy
of the album home and had my father listen to it, he told me straight up that, my voice was in sync with
the rhythm, and sounded mellow, but that my constant jestering tend to depreciate the message,"
she recalls. "He went on to say that, at 16 years old, my first priority should be to focus on getting a
good education! With that said, I honestly felt as though I was being depreciated by my own father, but hey, no child
of Joe Higgs argues with him, and especially not when it comes to music, so yeah, I was forced to quit my musical career before
I even got started. Truth is, I believe his attitude stemmed from the fact that he was too paranoid that any of his
children would venture into the music business, because he used to warn us EVERY DAY to stay away from it, and now, there
I was, being the absolute conflict of interest," she reminisced.
Much to her father's delight,
and with the assistance of a dear friend, the late, Vonnie Bogle, upon graduating High School, Marcia would land her first
job doing Record Keeping and Filing in the PM hours at the Ministry of Labor and Employment. This part-time position was very
short lived and so, she went into teaching, but after only a couple of years, she insisted the profession was too systematic
for her liking. "I had already gone to school, as a student, for enough years," she said. "I had been doing that since I was
six, and I never missed one year, so I just could not digest getting up at five in the mornings to be at "school"
on time again. I wanted to do something different and less confined, so I decided to return to my first love... MUSIC!" Ultimately,
Marcia Higgs would team up with identical twin sisters, Pauline & Paulette Robinson to form the all girls Dancehall-Reggae
Sing J Trio, Higgs & Twin.
The group would record for King
Jammy's, their debut single, "Down In The Ghetto," which was quickly followed by "Jump Up Time," (from which they did
the radio jingles, "Richie B Time" for Radio Jamaica's DJ, Richard Burgess and "Hopeton Brown Time" for Philadelphia's WKDU
Radio DJ, Hopeton Brown. Other singles to their credit were, "We A Say One," "Chant Down Oppression," and "Poverty Haffi Done."
The group would soon be encouraged by rhythm mogul, Steelie, to record a song for his Boss' SKD Label--The result was "Can't
Test We." The steaming, "Mi Lover," was done in New York for Yammy Productions, but ultimately, with the assistance of
Executive Producer, Phillip Johnson, the group would establish their own "Higgs & Twin" label to release their hottest
single to date, "Glamour Girl," which was manufactured and distributed by Sonic Sounds in Jamaica and
Jet Star in the UK.
Higgs & Twin had done background
vocals for a number of artists, but had left their indelible on both Lloyd Lovindeer's 1988 hurricane anthem,
"Wild Gilbert." Marcia, along with her sister, Georgia "Pat" Higgs, would stand out in the background of Alpha Blondy's platinum
selling "Jerusalem" album. Her sister, Pat, can also be heard on the "Higgs & Twin" single, "Jump Up Time." Marcia had also
worked as background vocalist for her own father on his "Triumph" album. In the late 1980s, after the passing of the legendary
"King Of Reggae," Bob Marley, Marcia Higgs was invited on a World Tour with the Wailers Band, performing at a host of venues,
which included a Private Party for a renown Hollywood movie star at his Malibu Hills mansion in California. It was
there and then, that Marcia would reunite with her father, who, for a number of years, had resided in Los Angeles (in
a sort of self-imposed exile). That night, much to the audience's delight, father and daughter performed a duet of his single,
"So It Go."
Marcia Higgs & Twin enjoyed working on
many stages, including but not limited to, Synergy's Reggae Sunsplash 1988 and 1989; Super Don's DJ Roll Call; Bagga Brown's
Red Label Reggae Cable, to name a few. The group also had the pleasure of opening for America's legendary, "The Manhattans"
and "The Temptations," when they toured Jamaica. In 1989, the group was approached by one of Jamaica's top female entertainers,
the Legendary, Pam Hall, to perform her composition, "Girls' Time," aka "A Lie Dem A Tell Pon We," for the JCDC
Song Festival Competition, where the group would soon emerge as one of the top 10 finalists. During the hectic all-island
festive tour that followed, Higgs & Twin quickly became favorites of the pack, and were constantly predicted by journalists
and show-goers all across the island to win the competition, but when Higgs & Twin were sidestepped by the judges, the
public were widely displeased, and so, an all-island controversy stirred. Various kinds of debris were thrown at the projected
winners, "Stop & Go" who had ran off stage to avoid being hurt. This controversy would last for many weeks, however, Higgs
& Twin walked away with the undeniable, and very well deserved "Best Performance" Award, which included a trophy
and a generous cash prize, which was given to charity.
Shortly after that experience,
the group Higgs & Twin would split! Nevertheless, Marcia did not totally abandon her musical passion, instead, as it was
in the beginning of her musical mission, she would return to the field as a solo act, and 1995, she resumed recording for
producer, King Jammy's, releasing such singles as "Not Bitter But Better," "My Kani," "Female Entertainers," "What You Want," and
"Positive Reasons." In 1996, he also did a CD, entitled, "Wild & Wet" for Los Angeles based R & C Productions. In
the year 2000, Marcia would become one of the background voices for the San Francisco based reggae band, "Groundation," on
their "Each One Teach One," album. She also gave a toast on Oboeist, Anna Fisher's Tribute to Johnny Nash,
with her rendition, "Hip-Hop Hooray Oh." On January 7, 2001, Marcia Higgs took
the stage for the Ethiopian World Federation (EWF Local #25) Christmas Celebration, at the El Ray Theatre in Hollywood,
California. Later that year, she would accompany the Wailing Souls, on their North America Summer Tour as a background
Higgs, had worked extensively with her legendary father, appearing with him around the USA, in England, Brazil and lastly,
in Japan. They had also recorded an EP (Extended Play) entitled "Joe & Marcia Together: Roots Combination." The
two were working on extending the EP into a full length CD when Joe Higgs died from cancer on December 18, 1999.
In the year 2005, Marcia founded the "JOE HIGGS MUSIC AWARDS" aka "The JHMA,"
in honor and memory of her late, Legendary Father. On December 8, 2006, the first event was showcased at the "Florida International
University" Ballroom, in North Miami. Due to lack of support, The JHMA was put on hold, but in a recent conversation, Marcia
said, "The JHMA will be resumed when I feel the time is right! My father once told me in a vision the he appreciates my efforts,
and to me... that's all that matters!"
UPCOMING MUSICAL TRIBUTE TO JOE HIGGS
Marcia Higgs is currently working on a musical Tribute to her father, entitled,
"NOT BITTER BUT BETTER." This 10 track CD, which will be available on the market by this summer, is being recorded and produced
by Boston's multiple award winning, Dis-N-Dat Productions.
* * *
Marcia Higgs being interviewed by
Sista Dee from "A WHO DAT TV"
Here's a sneak pre sample of the track, "STEPPIN' RAZOR" which will be on Marcia's up
and coming musical Tribute to her late, Legendary Father, JOE HIGGS. "Steppin' Razor" was originally written by Joe Higgs
but made popular by the late, Legendary, Peter Tosh. Marcia puts a new spin on this track... take a listen...
The "Higgs & Twin" King Jammy's single, entitled,
"Can't Test We" with pictures of Marcia Higgs' outstanding performance at the "Revolutionary Women & Reggae: 3rd Annual
Tribute To Harriet Tubman," in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Dancehall Diva, Marcia Higgs,
Claims The Torch Of Her Late Father,
But Does She Have What It Takes?
By Agustus Cruz
"Classic," is a very much
abused word. It can be, and is so frequently debased, as to render it virtually meaningless. Especially given the fuzzy ethno-enological
parameters of this C-word, it can mean anything to anyone at any particular moment in time. However, in its original dictionary
definition as, something cited as a model, or of allowed excellence of its kind, then I am positively certain that
it can quite rightly be used to describe this reggae phenomenon, Marcia "Higgsy" Higgs.
Clad in blue denim outfit and
looking splendid, this "Reggae Royalty" took the stage in fine style, and with an obviously open mind, to the world abound,
she proceeded to perform with confidence. Her 60-minutes-set featured songs from her earliest to some of her latest recordings. With
songs like Down In The Ghetto," "Cyan Tes' Me," "Glamor Girl," "Wild & Wet," "What You Want," and "My Kani,"
this performer was like a taste of pure water to the numerous reggae fans here in sunny Miami. She soared with charisma,
and elegance, coupled with a reputation that truly elevates her above the regular dancehall clique.
is daughter of the late, incomparable, "Father Of Reggae Music," Joe Higgs. He was mentor to a host of reggae giants, including
the likes of Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, Jimmy Cliff, Wailing Souls, and Judy Mowatt. He had also shared this "confrontational"
sound with such American renowns as Lenny Kravitz, Stevie Wonder, Al Jarreau, and Little Richard. In the year 1990, Joe Higgs,
along with various American legends advocating for "world peace," appeared on the Arsenio Hall show to perform the single,
"Give Peace A Chance."
Marcia and her father had toured together, performing around
the US and other countries. In 1995, father and daughter teamed together to produce an EP entitled "Roots Combination." With
Joe singing and Marcia DJaying, this combination style is beautiful. The EP is manufactured and distributed by Macola Records
in Hollywood, CA.
Joe Higgs performing "Give Peace A Chance" with Lenny Kravitz and
a host of American Music Legends at the Arsenio Hall Show!
"Joe Higgs Birthday Salute"
June 3, 2002
Daughter of reggae icon, Joe Higgs, the sensational Marcia Higgs, and her "Stepping Razor" band,
will perform at the "First Annual Joe Higgs Birthday Salute," at actress Marla Gibbs' Place, known as Club Silk. The event
is presented in collaboration with Megavibz and Sea & Sun Productions, and features Boom Shaka, The Black Madhane aka
Royal Black Godess, Empress Akua & The Queens' Compound, Junior "P" and more. Word in the streets is that Marcia
Higgs will be singing"Joe Higgs" and reggae lovers from as far as San Francisco vows to be there
to see her performance.
Joe Higgs was born on June 3, 1940 and died on December 18, 1999 at age 59. This year, he would have celebrated his