The famed reggae and lovers rock singer rose from the world famous London crew Saxon Sound International to transatlantic chart-topper - a rare feat for any reggae artist, let alone one from Lewisham, south-east London. Songs such as the aforementioned US #1 "Close To You" (produced by Soul II Soul), (Cat Stevens cover) "Wild World".
2013 saw Maxi return on the scene in a big way via the Bulby-produced "Easy To Love". An album of the same name followed this year, and the domination of pirate radio stations has continued - you can expect to hear at least five cuts from the album blessing the airwaves at any given time. Maxi Priest is revered by the core reggae market for the first time in a very long time.
Marvin Sparks caught up with the Lewisham-born legend, Maxi Priest, about not getting his dues from black British music institutes, not liking the "lovers artist" label, major label albums feeling like foreign land and whether we'll get another Shabba Ranks collaboration.
You can catch where I spoke to him about Saxon Sound and their (under-stated) impact and importance here
Marvin Sparks: Easy To Love began hitting the airwaves last year. Beres Hammond "In My Arms" was first to hit off the riddim…
Maxi Priest: I wasn't really aware of the other track when I done "Easy To Love". The riddim was brought to me by Big Dread from out of Wolverhampton. He came to the studio for dub plates and stuff but when he played the riddim track, I was like "Yo, I love this riddim track!" I wanted to write a song for it. I wrote the song, he told me the riddim belonged to Bulby from Jamaica.