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Song a hit after near-death experience made writer revisit it

Glenn Blakeney and Dexter Dillas (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

A musician has a hit on his hands after a brush with death inspired him to revisit the first song he wrote.

Dexter Dillas, a chef with the MEF group of restaurants and a drummer, said he penned Just Thank the Lord 26 years ago, but put it aside.

He returned to the tune after he ended up fighting for his life in hospital in April and worked on it after he was released home on his birthday on May 8.

Mr Dillas – who performed in groups such as the Bermuda Strollers and the James Montgomery Band – said he decided to “finish this project that I had on hold for all those years” after his recovery.

He added the song had caught on with listeners after its release on iTunes.

Mr Dillas said: “I knew that now was the time.

“I had assistance from David Darlington, an American musician who is well know to Bermuda.

“We used to play together at the Holiday Inn and the Galaxy Nightclub.

“He’s a four-time Grammy-awarded engineer.

“I reached out to him for help after this harrowing experience – and he nailed it.”

The spiritual song got the magic voice of Alicia Olatuja, who shot to international fame for her performance at the second presidential inauguration in 2013 for Barack Obama, as well as members of the famous Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir.

Mr Dillas, a graduate of the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, said he was “very excited at the response” after releasing the song on iTunes, Spotify and CD.

He added: “I hope everyone will receive a blessing from it.”

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Published August 16, 2021 at 7:55 am (Updated August 16, 2021 at 7:22 am)

Song a hit after near-death experience made writer revisit it

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