Fathead Musician
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Fathead Musician

For the American jazz saxophonist, see David "Fathead" Newman.
Vernon Rainford
Born c. 1960
Kingston, Jamaica
Died (1988-10-19)19 October 1988
Genres Dancehall
late 1970s – 1985

Fathead (born Vernon Rainford, c.1960 – 19 October 1988) was a dancehall deejay best known for his collaborations with Yellowman in the early 1980s.[1]


Fathead was born in Kingston, Jamaica, and was already an established deejay when he began working with Yellowman, during the peak of the latter's popularity between 1980 and 1982.[1] The pair performed regularly at the Aces Disco in St. Thomas, and recorded a live album there (the first ever live dancehall album),[2]Live at Aces, which was sufficiently successful for studio follow-ups Bad Boy Skanking and For Your Eyes Only (both 1982). Other albums featuring the duo were One Yellowman, Supermix, and The Yellow, The Purple, and the Nancy, the latter also featuring Purpleman and Sister Nancy.

With Yellowman concentrating on solo material, Fathead went on to work with others, having a hit in 1983 with "It's Me", and collaborating with Beenie Man, Early B, Johnny Ringo, and Ranking Toyan.[1]

Yellowman and Fathead were reunited in 1984 for the Showdown vol. 5 album, split between the duo and Purpleman.[3]

Rainford was murdered in Florida, United States on 22 December 1988, dying from a gunshot wound. During an interview with Winston Foster (Yellowman) carried out by Steve Day in Brighton, England on 4 November 2009, Yellowman confirmed that Fathead (Vernon Rainford) was actively involved in the Miami drug trade. It was this involvement that would lead to his death.[4]



  • Live at Aces (1982) VP/Jah Guidance (Yellowman & Fathead)
  • Bad Boy Skanking (1982) Greensleeves (Yellowman & Fathead)
  • For Your Eyes Only (1982) Arrival (Yellowman & Fathead)
  • One Yellowman (1982) Hitbound (Yellowman & Fathead)
  • Supermix (1982) Volcano (Yellowman & Fathead)
  • The Yellow, The Purple & The Nancy (1982) Greensleeves (Yellowman & Fathead, Purpleman, & Sister Nancy)
  • Showdown Vol 5 (1984) Hitbound (Yellowman & Fathead & Purpleman)


  • "It's Me"/"Wha Dat" (1983)
  • "That's The Sound" (w/ King Mellow Yellow, 1984)
  • "Wha-Do-Dem-So" (w/ King Mellow Yellow, 1984)
  • "Rat Trap"
  • "Come Me A Come"
  • "Champion"
  • "Stop All The Fight"


  1. ^ a b c Moskowitz, David V. (2006) Caribbean Popular Music: an Encyclopedia of Reggae, Mento, Ska, Rock Steady, and Dancehall, Greenwood Press, ISBN 0-313-33158-8, p.109-110
  2. ^ Barrow, Steve & Dalton, Peter (2004) The Rough Guide to Reggae, 3rd edn., Rough Guides, ISBN 1-84353-329-4, p.256-7
  3. ^ Showdown vol. 5 at Roots Archives
  4. ^ Simmonds, Jeremy (2008) The Encyclopedia of Dead Rock Stars: Heroin, Handguns, and Ham Sandwiches, Chicago Review Press, ISBN 978-1-55652-754-8, p.209

External links

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