Lorenzo Aitken, more commonly known as Laurel Aitken was a Cuban born singer and songwriter. He moved to Jamaica, his father’s homeland, with his family aged 10 and spent most of his life between there and the UK. Laurel began singing from a young age. In his teens he sang as part of a Calypso group that performed for tourists arriving by cruise to Jamaica. Laurel worked on his singing and song writing talent and soon became a very well-known nightclub performer around Kingston. Aitken released a double-A-side “Little Sheila” and “Boogie in My Bones” record produced by Chris Blackwell, the founder of Island Records. It was a massive hit in Jamaica and was No.1 in the charts for over 3 months. It stayed in the charts for over a year. This hit also went on to become Islands Records’ first ever record to be released in the UK.
Laurel started recording in Jamaica as a young man in the late 50s. His career spanned over 20 years and he produced many hits recognised not only in Jamaica but also in the UK and many other countries. Laurel Aitken is known as one of the pioneers of Ska music helping to raise its profile. He was a key figure in the development of Jamaican music. Aitken continued to perform occasional concerts up until his death in 2005. Laurel Aitken, Godfather of Ska, Caribbean1st absolutely salutes you.