Slightly Stoopid, Assassin aka Agent Sasco, Sly & Robbie with Marcia Griffiths, Judy Mowatt & Cherine Anderson, Walshy Fire w/ Kabaka Pyramid, J Boog, Stick Figure, Lutan Fyah & Riddem Rebel Band, Junior Kelly, Kabaka Pyramid & The Bebble Rockers, Ibibio Sound Machine, Dezarie, Culture featuring Kenyatta Hill, Ken Boothe, Perfect Giddimani, Warrior King & The Rootz Warriors, Nkulee Dube, Nattali Rize,
Winston “Flames” Jarrett, Marla Brown, Prestige, Keida, Ojo de Buey, Sensimilla Dub, Mighty Mystic & The Hard Roots Movement, Yogoman Burning Band, Tatanka,
Mystic Roots Band, Irie Rockers, Altar Tones, and a very special showcase with Woven Roots featuring JahDan Blakkamoore, Messenjah Selah, Army, Winstrong, Luv Fyah & Travis Roots. Special guests Young Shanty, Rocker T, Teoman & Rob Symeonn, additional DJs, sound systems and special guest artists will be announced.
Additional DJs, sound systems and special guest artists will be announced.
The 2017 Reggae on the River artist lineup draws from the wellspring of reggae’s greatest songwriters, singers and players of instruments offering something for every reggae lover.
Assasin has continued in the path of the firestorm of Jamaican dancehall that influences so many of today’s popular tunes. His latest album Theory of Reggativity gives the listeners the original dancehall style, bubbling with one drop rhythms in tribute to the roots of reggae culture. Sasco’s gravelly voice and thunderous flow ride the riddims in classic cultural dancehall style with lyrics that are full of vibes. Agent Sasco’s lyrical bars are found in Hiphop collaborations with artists Kendrick Lamar & Kanye West.
West Coast style reggae is represented with Slightly Stoopid an all star set of musicians with a full horn section that formulated their sound by learning from some of Jamaican reggae’s greatest mentors. Making their second ROTR appearance is Stick Figure who blend upbeat tempos with the heavy vibes of dub music in a multi-layered sonic experience.
Kabaka Pyramid performs two sets during ROTR 2017, one with DJ and producer Walshy Fire from Major Lazer as part of their Walshy Fire Presnts: Accurate Mixtape collaboration to day one and a set with his band the Bebble Rockers, an ensemble that creates music that blends Jamaican rhythms with hip hop and the artist’s conscious, sharply delivered messages that aim to shake up the status quo.
Sly & Robbie have performed and recorded as a drum and bass duo on thousands of tracks and are responsible for ushering in the digital era of reggae. They are part of a showcase with Bob Marley’s I-Threes harmony singers Marcia Griffiths and Judy Mowatt who along with next generation artist Cherine Anderson will perform some of the classics from the catalog as well as individually on tracks that established each of them as solo artists.
There are two artists from Jamaica’s reggae genesis that come to this year’s festival stage including Ken Boothe who started out singing pre-reggae rocksteady in the 1960’s reaching the top of the Jamaican and British charts and Winston “Flames” Jarrett was part of harmony trio The Flames, chanting over one drop rhythms beginning in the 1960’s.
Representing the 1990’s return to roots reggae and a string of global hit “culture” tunes are singer Warrior King peforming with his band the Rootz Warriors, and singjay Junior Kelly whose baritone chants cover a wide range of topics, as well as Lutan Fyah, who has not appeared on a US festival in several years and will be bringing the fire with his band the Riddem Rebels.
Part of the next generation of reggae from outside of Jamaica, J Boog comes from Compton, California and his Samoan culture influences his island reggae sound performing some of reggae’s most soaring, perfectly pitched vocals with the Hot Rain band. From Australia is Nattali Rize, who writes rock-influenced reggae with socially conscious messages, she calls it “rebel music for a new era.” Her album Rebel Frequency released in March, 2017 reached the #2 position on the Billboard Reggae chart.
Jamaica’s Perfect Giddimani has maintained #1 chart positions both in Jamaica and in Europe releasing singles on his own label as well as rhythm compilations that include other artists. His reality tunes are often tinged with humor, addressing current events and his personal take on the music industry.
Dezarie hails from St. Croix, US Virgin Islands and returns to the 2017 festival stage, releasing 5 albums, she maintains a devoted following. Her band is comprised of members of Midnite, providing a deep roots vibe for her complex vocal chants.
Three reggae artists on the 2017 lineup descend from reggae royalty that have passed on; Nkulee Dube from South Africa is the daughter of the late Lucky Dube, she makes her second appearance at ROTR 2017. Culture featuring Kenyatta Hill,continues the legacy of Joseph Hill the lead singer’s late father. The daughter of the “Crown Prince of Reggae” Dennis Brown, Marla Brown comes from the UK carrying on the prolific tradition of her late father paying tribute to his catalog and performing her own upbeat originals.
Prestige sings conscious, uplifting lyrics appearing on Jamaican stages, he returns to ROTR 2017 for his second appearance. Keida returns to the festival in 2017 after appearing in the late night session in 2016, her thoughtful lyrics delivered over dancehall, one drop and Hiphop rhythms keep the crowd moving.
The lineup includes reggae from around the world in its hybrid forms including Ojo de Buey from Costa Rica who mix reggae with salsa, rock and electronica. From Brasil come Sensimilla Dub who sing in Portuguese and play “heavy reggae” influenced by deep roots and acid rock. World music artists Ibibio Sound Machine mix West African funk & disco with post-punk and electonica, evocative Nigerian poetic imagery is set against an edgy Afro-Electro soundscape that is part of the currrent wave of modern Afrocentric sounds sweeping the globe.
Woven Roots is a group of singers and musicians who have released dozens of tracks individually and come together to play with a band in the great tradition of collaboration and artist showcases in reggae. Featuring JahDan Blakkamoore, Messenjah Selah, Army, Winstrong, Luv Fyah & Travis Roots, the set will spotlight the individual singers backed by the Woven Roots band.
When the festival season concludes, there are several US-based bands that keep the fire burning for Reggae year round, touring across the country performing weekly gigs, several of these great bands come to the 2017 ROTR stage; Mighty Mystic & The Hard Roots Movement, Yogoman Burning Band, Tatanka, Mystic Roots Band, Irie Rockers and the Altar Tones.
Special guests include Young Shanty, Rocker T,Teomon and Rob Symeonn who will perform with the soundsystem DJ’s throughout the festival weekend. More DJ’s soundsystems and special guests will be announced in the weeks to come.
Reggae on the River will also host more than 60 arts and crafts vendors, non-profit booths, a wide choice of food options, a lively KidLandia for the little ones, and the camping, community, and irie vibes that make “Reggae” famous. Available now are 3 and 4-day passes at regional ticket outlets, a list of which can be found at: reggaeontheriver.com/tickets where you can also make your online purchase through the Eventbrite ticketing system. Available in a limited amount is the Ambassador Pass with the ultimate in perks and access including reserved camping situated closest to the concert bowl, the Ambassador’s Lounge with bar amenities, deluxe restrooms, and access to the side stage viewing deck. RV space is on sale now in limited quantities. If in need of some extra comfort while tent camping, consider making a reservation in the new for 2017 Premier Campground which offers grassy and mixed shade camping situated a short distance from the concert bowl.