Frederick “Toots” Hibbert has released his first original studio single in more than 10 years, “Got to Be Tough.” The energized track arrives ahead of a full-length Toots and the Maytals LP of the same name, due out August 28th via Trojan Jamaica/BMG Records.
Arriving at a time of political unrest around the world, “Got to Be Tough” is a reminder to stay strong when corrupt systems rear their heads.
“This album is speaking out about injustices while pointing to a better time,” Hibbert tells Rolling Stone. “This album is teaching a path to recovery and step to better days on the journey ahead. This album Got to Be Tough is a bind builder of positive objectives.”
“[My band] Sshh and I first went to Jamaica in 2012 hoping to find Toots because we loved his music so much,” collaborator Zak Starkey says. “We found him in Kingston playing a killer show and we got to meet him. Now, eight years after meeting Toots for the first time, it is an honor and a pleasure and what a vibe! To participate in this incredibly powerful original record by the creator of reggae. Toots is one of the great singers and musicians of our time.”
Among its 10 tracks, the LP will include a cover of “Three Little Birds” in collaboration with Ziggy Marley.
Last year, Toots and the Maytals transformed Fleetwood Mac’s 1969 ballad “Man of the World” into a lovesick reggae track for the Trojan Jamaica compilation Red, Gold, Green and Blue. The reggae legends also covered the John Denver classic “Take Me Home, Country Roads” for a Spotify Session release, together with a new song, “A Song Call Marley,” which will not be featured on Got to Be Tough.
Toots and the Maytals, Got to Be Tough Tracklist
1. Drop Off Head
2. Just Brutal
3. Got to Be Tough
4. Freedom Train
5. Warning Warning
6. Good Thing That You Call
7. Stand Accuse
8. Three Little Birds feat. Ziggy Marley
9. Having a Party