Johnny Nash dead: I Can See Clearly Now singer dies aged 80, his son says

Getty Images
Getty Images

Johnny Nash, best known for his song I Can See Clearly Now, has died at the age of 80, his son has said.

Nash, who had been in declining health, died of natural causes at his home in Houston, US, where he was born.

The reggae star began singing as a child and made his major label debut with the 1957 song A Teenager Sings the Blues.

He was 32 when topped the charts with I Can See Clearly Now in 1972, after he had spent nearly two decades in the business.

The musician was best known for his song I Can See Clearly Now (Getty Images)
The musician was best known for his song I Can See Clearly Now (Getty Images)

Reportedly written by Nash while recovering from cataract surgery, I Can See Clearly Now was a story of overcoming hard times.

The rock critic Robert Christgau would call the song, which Nash also produced, “2 minutes and 48 seconds of undiluted inspiration”.

He also ran a record company and helped launch the career of his friend Bob Marley.

Nash, also an actor and producer, was among the first artists to bring reggae to US audiences. He was one of the first non-Jamaican singers to record reggae music in Kingston, Jamaica, and praised “the vibes of this little island” when speaking about the country.

He peaked commercially in the late 1960s and early 1970s, when he had hits with Hold Me Tight, You Got Soul, an early version of Marley’s Stir It Up.

He also had a number one hit in the UK in 1975 with Tears on My Pillow.

He is survived by his son Johnny Nash Jr, daughter Monica and wife Carli Nash.