Bob Marley Day San Diego - Review
Photo: Arianna Gallegos, Carlos Culture
to Roots? Roots Revival? Classic Reggae? How about all that and more!
That’s what the Tribute to Bob Marley Celebration in San Diego February
21st was about. Now running for the 24th year in a row. The San Diego
concert had the finest in roots reggae on a rotating stage making it roots
lover’s paradise. Live bands non-stop from 1:00 to 11:00 it was
continuous and hardcore!
Kicking things off with a blast was Kush and the BloodFiyah
Angels. Kush, from the Ivory Coast,
sang in French and English, had a great show. The San Diego band in uniform
blazed a mighty set and set the pace for the international affair. A Spinning
stage turned to Brazil for a band of brothers named Tribo De Jah . The
band was great and covered a handful of Bob Marley songs to perfection
including “Natural Mystic”. They also sang in their native
portugese with “Guerreiros da Tribo” and then one in English
with “Wonderful World”. They jammed and kept the vibes flowin’.
favorite, Don Carlos and his wicked band came on next keeping the audience
filled with roots classics and sweet reggae vibes. His set included “Just
A Passing Glance”, “I Just Can’t Stop”, ”Zion
Train”, and “Frontline”. The MCs, Makeda Dread, founder
of the Festival and Junior Fracis did an excellent job and kept the show
bubblin’ all day and night.
The spinning stage turned to England for a man on mission, Martin “Rootsman”
Campbell, he was
backed by Detour Posse, LA’s best reggae band. Martin has a signature
sound from the channel one era. He had a great set and the crowd loved
him. After Martin Campbell’s set Dakeye, the lead singer for Detour
Posse, had the spotlight and rocked one tune.
things up, Tanya Stephens hit the stage with her new and old hits like
“Boom Wuk”, “Google’, “Can’t Breathe”,
“Good Ride”, and “Big Ninja Bike”. She was awesome
and her band was tight. Tanya made sure the San Diego massive got to see
her rock “It’s A Pity”. Her segues were well thought
out and on point.
San Diego’s honorary citizen, Barrington Levy ripped
the roof off the place. He had the
crowd singing every song and skanking all the way through. Hs band Detour
Posse can hold him down like nobody’s business. The went right down
the line with classics like “Here I Come”, “Prison Oval
Rock – San Diego Rock”, “Every Posse Must Work”,
and the list goes on. He was awesome!
stage in-the–round turned to Germany for the conscious vibes of
Gentleman and his 10-piece German band. Take the vibes of Buju Banton,
the stage showmanship of Elephantman, the rapid flow of Damian Marley
and his unique singing blend them all together through Germacian word,
sound, and power and you have Gentleman. He put on a great set and deliver
in explosive style, Songs like “Superior”, “Intoxication”,
“Dem Gone”, Jah Inna U Life” and many more were showcased.
One of the back up singers came on and did a wicked piece. The band was
right on and showed everyone that German reggae bands are also hardcore.
From the new generation of reggae to the foundation is where this show
is headed. – with four of the biggest names in reggae and one who
had never played in the US ever.
The last barrage of musical paradise started with Misty
in Roots, from the UK, this was their
first visit to the US. They were strickly roots obviously with an English
twist from the tip top to the last one drop. Truth and rights are the
corner stone of this bands message sang by front man Poko. “Wise
and Foolish” , “Live Up” and “Peace and Love”
and just a few gems they jammed. They put on an outstanding set leaving
many of the massive in awe! This group has been playing for 40 years and
showed their experience and professionalism.
around corner was Israel Vibration fully loaded with classics and hits.
Wiss and Apple are no strangers to the 619 massive and the 12,000 sold
out audience rocked along with vintage tunes like “Vultures”,
Ball of Fire”, “Same Song” and “Fighting Soldiers”.
These brothers are roots reggae with master bassie, Flabba at the controls.
From Jamaica to the Africa’s Ivory Coast is where
the vibes are going with Alpha Blondy. This
multi-lingual singer hit the crowd hard with “Jerusalem”,
“ Cocody Rock” and “Aparteid is Nazism”. He held
the place captive from the center of the stage or most the performance.
His band was super tight and gave killer vibes.
Back to the little rock, Jamaica. The MCs showcased another reggae giant,
Jimmy Cliff. This
year’s Grammy nominated artist also gave an exceptional performance
rocking with “Rub-A-Dub Partner”, Wornderful World, Beautiful
People”, “Treat The Youths Right” and many more. Jimmy
had a huge band, the Black Magic Band, had a lot of fun while they had
Steel Pulse, came to put their signature on this year celebration of “A
Tribute to Bob Marley” in
San Diego. David Dread, Selwyn and the rest of the UK crew came to serious
business with their hardcore fans. “Roller Skates”, “Bodygaurd”,
and “Raid Blues Dance” were just a few of the classics along
with new material like “African Holocaust” and “Blazing
The show was a complete success and is looking forward the the 25th Annual
Tribute to Bob Marley Celebration.