Glowing tribute has been paid to the late songwriter Archibald “Bunny” Alleyne who passed away last week at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital after a brief illness. He was 71.
Remembered as one of the “greatest composers ever”, one of Alleyne’s biggest hits was The Things Of Christmas sung by the Draytons Two, which is still very much on rotation on radio stations during the Christmas season.
Spouge master Desmond Fowl Weekes of the Draytons Two told Barbados TODAY he first met the late music composer when Alleyne established the first ever mobile record shop in Barbados from the back of his car.
Laughing and reminiscing about the good times they had, Weekes described him as a man committed to building a music industry on the island.
Weekes said Alleyne was so dedicated that he would drive from house to house to sell local music and get it into the homes of Barbadians.
Out of the back of his car, he sold music not just for the Draytons Two but for Wendy Alleyne, Joseph Niles, Ricard Stoute and others.
Alleyne also worked closely with what was known as the Caribbean’s leading record producers – the West Indies Record Limited.
It is believed that much of his music was exported and reproduced overseas. Weekes said a few years ago he had contacted Alleyne about possibly documenting his work but time did not permit it.
“We lost a good writer. He was never really recognized, but he was truly a great song writer,” Weekes said.
“He was always out there trying to create and he would compose everything from classical to calypso – he loved music.
“In Barbados sometimes it is very hard when you are trying to do certain things that people can’t understand. Some people are ahead of their time and Bunny was certainly one of those people. If the Internet was around back then where Bunny could have put all his talents out there when he was really on top, I think he would have been a force to reckon with,” he added.
Alleyne, who will be laid to rest on Friday, leaves to mourn two children Michael Smith and Rochelle Miller.
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