Frederick “Toots” Hibbert, frontman of reggae group Toots And The Maytals, is “making positive progress” after being admitted to intensive care with suspected Covid-19.
The 77-year-old Jamaican singer is being treated at a private hospital in the Caribbean island’s capital, Kingston, where he is awaiting the results of a test for the virus.
A statement from his representative said: “While reports of Mr Hibbert being in an intensive care unit at a private facility in the corporate area are true, the family would like to assure those concerned that he is making positive progress and is receiving the best possible treatment, while he awaits the results on his Covid-19 test.
“He is resting and in good spirits, and is showing signs of improvement by the hour.
“His family has asked everyone to hold him in their prayers, and would like to thank Minister of Culture Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange and Minister of Health Christopher Tufton for their assistance in getting Mr Hibbert tested, as well as the countless medical professionals who are taking care of Mr Hibbert around the clock during this time.”
The Jamaica Gleaner newspaper reported that Hibbert was admitted to hospital after complaining of breathing difficulties.
Esteemed British label Trojan Records said it hoped Hibbert “makes a speedy recovery”, while British reggae vocalist Maxi Priest urged fans to pray.
He added: “Prayers and well wishes to my bredrin. Stay strong king. Blessings all around.”
Toots And The Maytals’ hits include 54-46 (That’s My Number), Pressure Drop and Monkey Man, while their 1968 single Do The Reggay is credited with giving the reggae genre its name.
They released Got To Be Tough, their first album in a decade, last week.
It includes a cover of Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds featuring Marley’s son Ziggy.