Terry Hall, lead singer of the English ska and ska revival band The Specials, has passed away.
News of Hall’s passing was shared on the band’s verified social media accounts. Facebook wrote that he died “after a brief illness.”
The post called Hall “our beautiful friend, brother and one of the finest singers, songwriters and lyricists this country has ever produced,” going on to say “the sound His music and performances encapsulate the essence of life… joy, pain, humor, fight for justice, but mostly love.”
Hall was believed to be 63 years old at the time of his death and is survived by his wife Lindy Heymann, a filmmaker, and children Leo and Felix Hall.
Originating in 1977 in Coventry, England, Specials enjoyed success in the late 70s and early 80s, with their self-titled debut album.
The original lineup included Hall, who replaced vocalist Tim Strickland shortly after The Specials were formed, along with Jerry Dammers, Roddy “Radiation” Byers, Neville Staple, John Bradbury, Dick Cuthell and Rico Rodriguez.
The Specials are known for songs including “Gangsters” and “Ghost Town”, the latter of which remained at number 1 for three weeks in the UK in 1981, going on to spend 10 weeks in the Top 40.
The band, also known for their staunch opposition to racial injustice, regularly comment on politics and social reform in Britain and beyond. “Forty years ago, Specials embodied national status – seven voices as one from an often deprived UK town.” the band’s official website descriptively speaking.
Hall also formed the bands Fun Boy Three in 1981 and The Colourfield in 1984 – known for the hit song “Thinking of You” – before going solo with a pair of albums in the ’90s.
He eventually revamped The Specials for a new tour and music in 2008 (the band had reunited once before in the ’90s, but Hall wasn’t part of that iteration. ). The more recent Specials lineup includes Lynval Golding, Horace Panter, John Bradbury, Neville Staple, Roddy Byers and Nikolaj Torp Larsen.
In 2019, The Specials released their eighth studio album Encore, which featured the first new material with Hall as lead vocalist since 1981’s “Ghost Town”.
Monday’s social media posts in tribute to Hall ended by sharing how the singer “often left the stage at the end of The Specials’ life-affirming performances with three words… ‘Love Love Love Love’) ‘.”