1947 (age 70–71)|
St. Andrew, Jamaica
Barry Biggs (born 1947, although some accounts list 1953;St. Andrew, Jamaica) is a Jamaican reggae singer, best known in the UK for his cover of the Blue Magic song, "Sideshow", which got to number 3 in the UK Singles Chart in 1977.
Biggs worked as an recording engineer and cameraman with the Jamaican Broadcasting Company, and also spent time as a member of the band the Astronauts, before becoming the lead singer for Byron Lee's Dragonaires.
It was at Lee's Dynamic Sounds studio (where he also worked as a producer and engineer) that Biggs recorded his first Jamaican hit, a cover of The Osmonds' "One Bad Apple". He broke through to international success in 1976 with "Work All Day", which had been recorded seven years earlier. Biggs had six hit singles on the UK Singles Chart between 1976 and 1981, the most successful of these, "Sideshow", reaching number 3 in January 1977. He recorded two songs with Bunny Lee; "Sincerely" and "You're Welcome" which did well in reggae charts. He topped the reggae chart in the UK with "Wide Awake in a Dream" and "A Promise is a Comfort to a Fool".
Many of Biggs' recordings were reggae cover versions of popular soul hits, including songs such as Stevie Wonder's "My Cherie Amour"; "Sideshow" and "Three Ring Circus" by Blue Magic; and others originally by The Chi-Lites, The Moonglows ("Sincerely"), and The Temptations ("Just My Imagination"). His version of "Love Come Down", originally recorded by Evelyn "Champagne" King, was a top 5 hit in 1983 in The Netherlands. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Biggs avoided the political and Rasta themes then popular in Jamaica.
Biggs continued to perform occasionally in the 2000s, notably at a 2008 service of thanksgiving for his former bandleader, Byron Lee.