Tonton David

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David Grammont (12 October 1967 in Réunion – 16 February 2021 in Nancy, France), better known under his stage name Tonton David was a French Reggae singer born in Réunion. He was renowned for his raggamuffin performances, but used influences of soul music, gro kâ (from the French West Indies), the Zairian rumba.



Tonton David had a turbulent childhood in a suburb of Paris. He left his family aged 14 and had a successful career in music with songs featuring powerful and political lyrics. [1] In 1990, Tonton David had his big break when he was featured in a TV report about "Black Paris". Following that performance, Tonton David was signed by the Virgin record label. Shortly after, he recorded "Peuples du monde", which was featured in French rap compilation Rapattitudes.

Le blues de la racaille released on 2 December 1991, was his debut album in which he explored social issues such as unemployment, poverty and racism, becoming a figurehead for a whole generation of disenchanted French youth. In 1991, he performed in front of an audience of 12,000 music fans at the Fête des Kafs in Saint Denis, La Réunion and in 1992 at Reggae Sunsplash festival in Kingston, Jamaica. In 1993, he released his second album Allez leur dire recorded in Memphis, Tennessee. "Sûr et certain" taken from the same album was released as a single. 1995 saw his biggest success to date with the release of the song "Chacun sa route", which was used in the soundtrack of the film Un indien dans la ville . His third album Récidiviste in 1995 included the single "Pour tout le monde pareil" and featured a collaboration with rai star Cheb Mami in "Fugitifs". His fourth album Faut qu'ça arrête was more heavily influenced by Haitian music, after he collaborated with Haitian musician Papa Jube. His death, in Metz (France), was announced on 16 February 2021. [2]




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  1. "Tonton David" (in French). RFI Musique. Archived from the original on 10 June 2010. Retrieved 7 June 2010.
  2. Mort de Tonton David : un AVC évoqué, une pluie d'hommages. lintern@ute. Retrieved on 17 February 2021 (in French)