Music News

Garry Lowe, bassist for Big Sugar, dead at 65

Garry Lowe, bassist for legendary band Big Sugar, passed away Saturday, July 7, at the age of 65. He’d fought cancer for two years, privately, according to the band.

“We lost our dear brother and sweet friend Garry this morning,” said Big Sugar singer Gordie Johnson. “He was my greatest musical collaborator, our wisest elder. We were blessed to be on life’s journey together. We were blessed to know him and share his music. Please remember Garry Lowe in all your thoughts and prayers.”

Lowe, a native of Kingston, Jamaica, moved to Canada in 1976. He quickly became a respected and sought-after bassist in the city’s reggae scene, often playing with bands at the Bamboo Club on Queen. Lowe was a founding member of Culture Shock, one of Toronto’s most popular reggae bands. He made fast friends with Johnson, himself a bassist and huge reggae fan.  By 1994, Lowe had joined Big Sugar and is featured on some of the band’s biggest and best loved songs.

Lowe was a featured player on nine of Big Sugar’s albums, from 1992’s self-titled release through 2003’s Hit & Run.

When Big Sugar went on hiatus in 2003, Lowe formed the Truth and Rights Revue with fellow Big Sugar member Mojah, a band that played together for a short time and released one album.

Among his final performances, Lowe played alongside his friends in Big Sugar and Alex Lifeson of Rush at the Danforth Music Hall in December.

Tributes began pouring in Saturday morning as the news spread of Lowe’s death.

The band’s official statement ends with this:

“Rally around the Lion.”

Amber Healy

I write about music policy and lawsuits because they're endlessly fascinating.

Amber Healy has 520 posts and counting. See all posts by Amber Healy

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