KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) _ Dennis Brown, a former child star who became known as the Crown Prince of Reggae, died today at a Kingston hospital. He was 42.

Initial reports suggested Brown died of complications caused by respiratory problems, but his cause of death had not yet been confirmed, said Carl Davis, chief executive officer at University of the West Indies Hospital.

Brown rose to prominence amid a 1970s wave of reggae singers that included Bob Marley, who introduced reggae music to listeners worldwide. He released a string of hit songs beginning with ``No Man is an Island,'' which he recorded in 1969 at the age of 12.

The singer's most fruitful period came later, when he produced hits including ``Westbound Train,'' ``How Could I Leave,'' and ``Ghetto Girl,'' a song recently covered by British singer Mick Hucknall of the pop group Simply Red.

He earned a Grammy nomination in 1995 for his album Light My Fire.

He is survived by his wife, Yvonne, and 13 children, Radio Jamaica reported.