reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 22, 2017 02:05AM
Latest thinking ...

OK, I get it... we all want to support and root on the next wave of JA self-contained bands. But have we lowered the bar too low? Just because they are from JA and are a band, doesn't mean they are producing great music. Solid music? Yes. Some good songs? Yes. But a great album....not yet. We are still waiting. I think of the issues is that these bands have a hard time establishing an identity. To my ears, there isn't enough separation between Rootz Underground, Raging Fyah, EarthKry, Mystikal Revolution, Dubtonic Kru, Uprising Roots Band, or Pentateuch. However, I'll give No-Maddz lots of credit for their collaboration with Sly and Robbie. A distinct sound and a cleverness in their delivery.

With that in mind, tip of the hat to EarthKry for creating a solid album titled 'Survival.". Hopefully, they can evolve into something bigger. Although they "borrow" some pieces of Bob tunes, they show great potential in forming their own identity on several stellar songs. I'll be rooting for them...but with the bar high.

Hard to believe Yellowman is still out touring and releasing new music. More importantly though, kudos to him for speaking out about the treatment of gays in the JA reggae community.

I've made it through the first 150 pages of Roger Steffens outstanding new book, So Much Things to Say. Couple things struck me right away. First, to no one's surprise, there are plenty of conflicting recollections about Bob's life. Roger lays out the quotes and and lets the reader decide for themselves. My questions for Roger:
What prompted Cedella Marley to travel to Delaware to marry Edward Booker? How did they meet?
Do we ever hear from Sharon Marley's biological dad's family in England? What ever happened to her father?
Cool Vibes,
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 22, 2017 04:25PM
To each their own.. I would say you should add Chronixx, Protoje, Jesse Royal, Sevana, Jah 9, King Pyramid, Iba Mahr, Naptali, Sara Lugo, Mellow Mood all to that mix to create more "room" between those bands. I personally disagree and no my standard isn't if a band is from JA or not. It is if I like them or not. I personally like all the bands you mentioned as well as the bands I mentioned. I also like bands that play "Cali Roots" as it seems to be called.. Stick Figure, Rebelution, SOJA etc.. I don't worry about whether something is "watered down" or not.. If it hits a mood then I play it. I don't care if you call it Cali Roots or the Reggae Revival. I don't compare which generation made the best music or not. I just play what I like and what I don't I don't speak on (anymore). All of the people named put their heart and soul into it so I respect that a lot more than I do fans (not you) who just offer criticism while producing nothing themselves. I still have yet to hear this sort of criticism from one artist about another.. not directly anyway. To me that is the line.. if artist were critical of other artist for actual artistic reason that is one thing.. fans.. not so much
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 04:35AM
On a subconscious level, all that cali reggae gives glory to selassie whether the band or fans know it or not, so I support it, thats my two cents

Giving thanks!
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 05:51AM
Yeah maybe in an indirect way. Sorry, but I just can't tolerate Rebelution or SOJA. Stick Figure has some good songs but I don't think any of them mention H.I.M. or any other Rasta themes!
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 05:27PM
I think Raging Fyah is a head above the rest. That "Everlasting" album is tip top all the way around imo.

Regarding the US-Roots bands, the non-rasta theme is one of their big defining qualities. That is intentional from my perspective.
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 05:58PM
Personally, the thing that draws me to reggae music and especially roots music is the gospel. I have my own religious beliefs that are similar in message ,but a different translation. I apply this music to my own God.

I listen to all types of music, for instance the day before the Dezarie show in Santa Cruz , I was at the Slayer show. I like metal music ,but do not always agree with the message. Bubble gum reggae is fun to listen to also, but one should respect the difference between roots music and cali roots. One should understand why they are chanting "Ras Tafari" just as one should understand why people chant "bless you" when you sneeze.

Rocky Bailey says"the message is in the music and music is in the message".
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 06:02PM
Quote
bun n cheese
I think Raging Fyah is a head above the rest. That "Everlasting" album is tip top all the way around imo.

Regarding the US-Roots bands, the non-rasta theme is one of their big defining qualities. That is intentional from my perspective.

This is what I was thinking....Raging Fyah is top notch.
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 07:09PM
I tend to agree...a lot of these JA bands coming out in the last few years do kinda sound alike. Raging Fyah definitely sticks out, as does Earthkry and New Kingston, as well as No-Maddz, for their originality.

I like Rebelution but I wouldn't necessarily go outta my way to buy their stuff. No SOJA or any other "cali roots" for me. Anyone remember how rude SOJA was when they headlined the valley stage on Friday night a few years back?

For my own tastes, the original roots sound with the Rastafari I-niversal message is the one that is most powerful.
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 23, 2017 08:41PM
Just my take.. we are lucky to be living in the era where music of all forms is so accessible. You can enjoy what you want and put the other stuff to the side
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 24, 2017 04:12AM
i like this new addition, (Surf-Roots Reggae), Ellameno Beat... seriously.

--
blessid love
ras danny
higher reasoning reggae time
KBOO Portland, Full Strength Community Radio
*Love is a net that catches hearts like fish.*
-Muhammad Ali
*I don't like reggae, I love it*
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 24, 2017 02:32PM
Quote
Ras Danny
i like this new addition, (Surf-Roots Reggae), Ellameno Beat... seriously.

Review here
[jmpowellblog.wordpress.com]
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 24, 2017 05:45PM
The best version of "No woman, no cry" I have ever heard (and one of the top reggae performances I have seen this summer) was played by the jamaican jazz pianist Monte Alexander 2 nights ago at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center here in Santa cruz. Reggae can take many forms and its influence extends well beyond the marginal sub genres we argue/reason and pass judgement on.
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 24, 2017 08:08PM
Quote
JosephDaniel
Anyone remember how rude SOJA was when they headlined the valley stage on Friday night a few years back?

I wasn't there that year, but how were they rude?
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 24, 2017 08:28PM
Quote
akee123
Quote
Ras Danny
i like this new addition, (Surf-Roots Reggae), Ellameno Beat... seriously.

Review here
[jmpowellblog.wordpress.com]

I've never heard of these guys until now, thanks for the recommendation. Listening to Bumpy Road and the singer sometimes sounds or reminds me of Mr. 83 from the Ooklah and Father Psalms fams.
Re: reggae thoughts....my two cents
August 25, 2017 04:04PM
I literally never take anyone's "word" on how "rude" a band is. You have no idea what the one experience you have with them is "how they are".. they could have just found out they got stiffed on their next gig. Someone could have passed away, there could be a million non public reasons for how they are. I met the lead man in SOJA after they played the Edgefield up here in Portland. They opened for Franti. Dud was just hanging out after the show up by the beer garden. Totally nice guy. I don't assume he is always that way but like the rest of us, he and the band probably have good days and bad.
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