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|Born||February 24, 1945|
|Died||July 23, 1984 (age 39)|
|Other names||Robby Gautier, Too Tuff|
|Years active||1962-1981, 1982-1984|
Robin Ifa Gautier (24 February, 1945 - 23 July, 1984) was an Emeraudian singer, musician and songwriter. Considered one of the founding fathers of randé, as well as one of the most influential and well known Emeraudian cultural icons of all time, his musical career would be marked by helping give birth to the genre of randé, as well as his distinctive vocal and songwriting style. Gautier's contributions to the realm of music have increased the visibility of Emeraudian music worldwide, and he remains a staple of pop culture to this day. Over the course of his career, he became a Mufasti icon, and he injected a sense of spirituality into his music. He is also considered a global symbol of Emeraudian culture and music and identity, and was rather controversial with his outspoken support for social and democratic reform. His 1984 death at the hands of a gunman in Liberty City, Rizealand, is believed to have been politically motivated. He also advocated for the legalization of cannabis, and was an advocate for pan-Bahianism
Born in Port-au-Grégoire, Île d'Émeraude, Gautier began his musical career in 1962 at the age of 17, after forming the music group Yung Delinquents with his brother Bruno and close friend Milo Rémy, which would eventually become the Bawlers. They would release their debut album, "The Bawling Bawlers", in 1965, which included the single "One Love"; the song gained worldwide popularity, and established the group as a rising musical force; it also signifies the rise of randé as an up-and-coming genre. They went on to release 10 studio albums in total, and after signing to (some Gaullican record company), the band's name became Robin Gautier and the Bawlers. While initially employing louder instrumentation and singing, the group began engaging in rhythmic-based song construction in the late 1960s and early 1970s, coinciding with Gautier's conversion to Mufastism. Around this time, Gautier relocated to Verlois, and the group embodied their musical shift with the 1971 release of the studio album "The Best of the Bawlers".
The group began to gain international attention after signing to (some Gaullican record company), and touring in support of new albums "Full Moon" and "Hopin'", both released in 1973. Following the disbandment of the group the next year, Gautier continued to perform under the group's name. He would release more albums over the next few years, which included 1974's "Hanging Dread". He had his international breakthrough in 1975, following the popularity of (some Rizean country singer)'s cover of his 1974 single "I Shot the Sherriff", as well as the release of a live version of another 1974 single "No Woman, No Cry". This was followed by his breakthrough album in Rizealand and Euclea, 1976's "Mufastaman Vibration", which reached the Top 50 of the !notBillboard Soul Charts. After he permanently relocated to Verlois, he would record the album "Exodus", which incorporated elements of soul, blues, and Estmerish rock, and he enjoyed widespread critical and commercial success.
In 1981, Gautier would be diagnosed with lung cancer, though he luckily caught it early in it's development. Because of the cancer, however, he was forced to briefly walk away from music. Luckily for him, he wouldn't have to stay away for long; by Pascha 1982 he was in remission. After fully recovering from his treatment, he would resume his career, releasing a new album in 1983, "Prodigal Son", and beginning a "Comeback Tour". While he was in Liberty City, Rizealand, on a stop on his tour, he would be struck multiple times in a drive-by-shooting, and would die of his injuries. His fans around the world expressed their grief, and he received a state funeral in Île d'Émeraude, being the first of only two civilians to receive one in Île d'Émeraude's history.
A posthumous greatest hits album, "Legend" would be released in 1985, and it became and remains one of the best-selling randé albums of all time. Gautier also ranks as one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more that 95 million records. He was posthumously honored by Île d'Émeraude soon after his death, being given the Medal of Honor by then-President Jocelyne Louisette-Noel, and later being made a National Hero. The baseball team the Port-au-Grégoire Robins were renamed from their previous name "Ressortissants" to Robins in his honor.
- 1 Early life and career
- 2 Musical career
- 3 Cancer diagnosis
- 4 Death
- 5 Legacy
- 6 Personal life
- 7 Discography
Early life and career
Robin Ifa Gautier was born on February 25, 1945 in the home of his maternal grandmother in Port-au-Grégoire, Île d'Émeraude, which at the time was still under the Arucian Federation, to Romaine Dubuisson Gautier and Sébastien Gautier. Sébastien was of mixed Bahian-Gaullican ancestry, with his father having been a Gaullois civil servant who worked within the government of the Viceroyalty of the Emerald Isles. Sébastien claims to have been a captain in the Gaullican Navy, but had been discharged when the Great War ended; when he married to Romaine Dubuisson, a then 18-year old Bahio-Emeraudian, he had been employed as a fisherman. He regularly provided financial support for his wife and children, but he didn't spend much time at home, as his job kept him away. Robin was the second-youngest of 5 children, with three brothers and one sister. In 1953, when Robin was only seven, Sébastien would suffer a heart attack and die at the age of 54. Romaine would go on to remarry, marrying a law clerk from Rizealand by the name of Joseph Phelps.
Robin and Milo Rémy had been childhood friends in Port-au-Grégoire. They had started to play music together as they attended primary and high school. Romaine and Milo's father, Pascal Rémy, would have a child together, a daughter whom they named Esther. Now that Gautier and Rémy were living together in the same house in Port-au-Grégoire, their musical explorations deepened to include the new ska music, the latest R&B from Rizealand radio stations whose broadcasts reached Île d'Émeraude, and Bahian-originated Djeli pop. Gautier formed a vocal group with Milo, as well as his older brother Bruno, who was also involved in their musical explorations. The line-up was known variously as the Yung Delinquents, the Bawling Delinquents, the Bawling Bawlers and finally just the Bawlers. Rocksteady artist Henri Beaumont, who had been part of a popular vocal act Beaumont and Chausson with Aaron Chausson, lived nearby and encouraged the young trio. Robin and the others did not play any instruments at this time, and were more interested in being a vocal harmony group. Beaumont helped them develop their vocal harmonies, and started to teach Robin how to play guitar.
1962–1972: Early years
In March of 1962, Gautier's career in music would officially begin when he recorded 5 songs, "Reserve Your Judgement", "Can You Ever Love Me?", "Fireside", "Fear", and "Shine", at Imperial Studios in Port-au-Grégoire. Four of these songs would be released on a local record label.
In 1963, Robin, Bruno, and Milo would form a band, originally called Yung Delinquents. The name would evolve overtime to Yung Bawlers, the Bawling Bawlers, and then the Bawlers. The group would welcome other members, including Myriam Bureau, the original trio's half sister Esther, Dominique Gilson, and the future wife of Robin Peggy Morel. As the Bawling Bawlers, the band was discovered by music producer and talent agent Roland "Leroy" Bertillon. Their single "Low and Slow" for the Leroy label became an Emeraudian No. 1 hit in January 1964, selling nearly 75,000 copies. By 1965, the group had been working with many established Emeraudian musicians. By By 1966, Bureau and Gilson had left the group, leaving the original trio plus Esther and Peggy.
In September 1966, Robin and Peggy would marry, and for a short time they lived at Peggy's mother's residence in Los Santos, Rizealand. While there, Robin worked for a short time as a bus driver under the alias of Robby Gautier.
Though Robin was raised as a Catholic, Robin discovered Mufastism in the 1960's and became interested in Mufasti beliefs and ideology. He would formally convert to Mufastism after returning to Île d'Émeraude and began to grow his iconic dreadlocks.
In 1969, Emeraudian popular music would be changed forever, as the Bawlers would release a track that had a slower beat and calmer rhythm than most were used to at the time, which was first heard on the Bawler's 1968 single "Do The Randé". To make this possible, Gautier approached Pascal Rapace, a music producer who is credited with helping develop the randé sound. For the recordings, Papace had the best bassists, keyboard players, drummers, and guitarists the Leroy label had to offer work with the Bawlers. As (some Gaullois-Emeraudian music critic) wrote, "The tracks that had been recorded in this session by the Bawlers included their first efforts to develop their own style of music. Gone are the trumpets and saxophones of their earlier ska songs, with the electric guitar now experiencing increased use in their instrumentals." The songs recored would be released in the album, "The Best of the Bawlers", which included tracks such as "Soul Searchin'", "Proceed With Caution", and "From The Mountaintop".
Between 1969 and 1972, the Bawlers re-cut some old tracks with (some Emeraudian record label) in Port-au-Grégoire and Verlois in an effort to commercialize the Bawler's sound. Bruno Gautier would later maintain that these songs were never supposed to be released on an album, and were just demos for the labels to listen to. In 1971, Peggy and Robin would pay a visit to (some Satucine songwriter) who had worked with numerous successful acts, such as (some Chloéois jazz act) and (some Imaguan calypso act [gonna assume calypso comes from Imagua for the sake of this]). While working with them, a 20 minute tape was recorded over the course of 3 days. In this tape, Gautier would perform many of his own and (Satucine songwriter)'s compositions. A remarkable thing about this, however, is that the tape had been influenced more by Euclean pop than randé, in an effort to break Gautier into Euclean and Asterian charts. At this point, while he was already a star in his native Île d'Émeraude, Gautier had yet to establish himself outside of the island nation. He split residence between his home in Port-au-Grégoire and his home in (some predominately Bahian neighborhood in Verlois).
1972–1974: Move to (some Gaullican record company)
In 1972, the Bawlers had signed to (some Rizealander record label) and began a tour in Rizealand. While on this tour, Robin would meet (some Cassien soul singer), who'd introduce him to Dimitri Bechard, who'd been from (some Gaullican record company). He and Robin discussed the licensing of a few select songs for his label, which led to a nearly 4,000 denier offer to record an album for them. Berchard had been primed for a replacement for (some Chloéois jazz dude), who'd recently left the label, and he saw the Bawlers as an ideal fit. Berchard would later recall "I needed a way to snare in the young audience, who were more into a rebellious brand of music. I see Robin and the others walk into the room, their dreadlocks practically screaming 'rebel', and I think 'this is it, these are the guys.'" Robin had been hesitant to accept, feeling that accepting the deal would've amounted to selling out, which he did not want to do. After some convincing from Bruno and Milo, however, he'd eventually accept the offer, and the Bawlers returned to Île d'Émeraude to record in (some Gaullican record company)'s studio in Port-au-Grégoire, which resulted in the album "Full Moon" being recorded.
The recording of Full Moon was significant for a number of reasons; most notably, it had been the first time a randé band had access to a full state-of-the-art recording studio, and they were treated to the same care as many of their peers who'd specialized in other genres. Berchard wanted to blend their randé style with a more hypnotic, drifting feel, and worked with Robin to restructure his compositions. Robin would supervise the overdubbing of the album in Verlois, which included omitting two tracks.
Full Moon, their first album for (some Gaullican record company), would be released worldwide in March of 1973. Initially selling 17,00 records, the album was met with a positive critical reception. Later that year it was followed by the release of "Hopin'", which featured the song "I Shot the Sheriff". (some Rizean country singer) had been given the album by his bassist, who was of Emeraudian descent, in hope that he would enjoy it. He did, and would release his own cover of the song. It quickly rose up the !Billboard charts in Rizealand, while simultaneously bringing more international attention to the Bawlers, the original performers of the song. The Emeraudian audience hadn't been too keen on the changes to the randé sound in "Full Moon", but the style of "Hopin'"', which was closer to the original Gregwa style of randé, met better reception in Île d'Émeraude, and found fans among both randé and rock audiences.
During this period, Dimitri Berchard would gift his Port-au-Grégoire residence and company headquarters to Robin. He would use the building to house his own label, Too Tuff Records International, and the property would also become his new home.
During 1974, Robin Gautier and the Bawlers were scheduled to open 14 shows in Rizealand and Cassier for (some popular Chloéois jazz band). After four shows, they were fired for being more popular than the main act they had been opening for. Later during the year, the Bawlers would be disbanded, with each of the three main Bawlers pursuing solo careers. Esther Rémy-Gautier would also pursue a solo career, and would later find fame as a rhythm and blues artist in the 1980's.