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Reggae great dies: Cedric Brooks's sax goes silent

Reggae great dies: Cedric Brooks played in the Jamaican ska band The Skatalites and performed in "Door Peep," "Money Maker," and "Mystic Mood."

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Jamaican reggae great Cedric Brooks, left, laughs with Ska pioneer Johnny "Dizzy" Moore in 2001.

Cheryl Hatch / AP / File

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Cedric Brooks, a Jamaican saxophone player and influential roots reggae musician, has died. He was 70.

One of Brooks' sisters, Paulette Keise, said he died Friday of cardiac arrest at New York Hospital Queens. She said Saturday that he fell ill several years ago, losing his ability to speak.

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Brooks began his music career in the late 1960s as a studio musician, playing in songs such as Burning Spear's "Door Peep." He also had hits with trumpet player David Madden including "Money Maker" and "Mystic Mood."

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Brooks also was a member of the Jamaican ska band The Skatalites.

He is survived by seven children and four sisters.