2005 Lineup



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FRIDAY JUNE 24th  
11:00 am Festival begins Vendors will be serving foods characteristic of  the Caribbean and will have arts and crafts for sale.  Join us for Lunch, and check out the all-new Arcadia Festival Place.  Sample special Caribbean cocktails from Bacardi, or enjoy an ice cold Red Stripe.  
11:30am Lunch entertainment Tropical Mix  

5:00pm Pura Vida

What is Pura Vida Music? High energy, roots/rock/reggae with Latino influence. Derived from a native Costa Rican expression, Pura Vida means pure life. Pura Vida music keeps your head bobbing and your ass throbbing for more.  Pura Vida has already become a staple on the Michigan college music circuit. At home in St. Joseph they pack the house when they headline shows at Czar's 505. With a healthy mix of reggae, rhythm and blues, rock, jazz, funk, and afro-beat influences in their sound. Pura Vida is trying to take the best ingredients from classic music and stir it up into a great big ball of "good energy". Bassist Tom Johnson says "With the sad state of pop and rock music today, we're just trying to bring music back around to something a little more raw, more personal. I hate the label of reggae or rock n' roll band, because that has a way of limiting you, but that's the feeling that we're trying to bring to our shows." Even if the term reggae or rock n' roll doesn't do justice to the music Pura Vida brings to the stage, there is certainly no shortage of these traits in their songs. There is also plenty of positive energy and experience. Although Pura Vida is a relatively young band, these guys have been playing music all their lives. Singer/Songwriter Mike Struwin has been tearing up the local music scene since age 16, writing and producing original music on various projects, Mike has dedicated his life to music. Recently, he was awarded a cash prize and the title of "Kalamazoo Acoustic Idle". "I love playing the acoustic guitar; however in Pura Vida I mainly play the electric. It opens the doors to much more sound and adds more life to the music." Struwin is a highly recommended solo artist (for more info. visit www.mikestruwinmusic.com). In the wake of their appearance at Venetian Festival in St. Joseph, MI. Pura Vida is ready to hit the road. The reaction these guys get after a show is unbelievable. Located perfectly between Detroit and Chicago, St. Joseph is the perfect home base for a band primed to conquer both of those major markets plus the college circuits throughout Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin.

PuraVida
6:45pm Indika The Indika Reggae Band developed their talents growing up in Jamaica. Since relocating to Chicago 12 years ago they have been voted Chicago’s Best Backing Band. They feature Chicago’s top Male Vocalist & Entertainer Rasta Kelly and Chicago’s top DJ Doggie Ranks. Last year Indika was votes Best Reggae Band by the Chicago Jamaican Association. Featuring two of the Mid-west top vocalist you receive two show for the price of one every time. The Martin International Music Awards nominated their new CD for Best New CD. They play a mixture of Roots, Lover’s Rock, Studio One, Dancehall and guarantee to get the audience dancing every time.  Indika
8:15pm The Best of Chicago Singers! Featuring Kelly Rankin (AKA Rasta Kelly), Bunny Jackson, and U-Roy Born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica Kelly is Ruff and Ready, the minute he hits the stage you  are treated to 100 BPM’s of pure energy every time. He performs a mixture of Dancehall, Hip Hop, Ragamuffin and Roots Reggae. He is one of the new generation of performers who has brought positive lyrics to Dancehall and Clubs throughout the mid-west. Kelly started singing as a teenager in Kingston for various sound systems such as “Sir Daley” and his father’s sound system “Stereo Tone”. He was performing at the Jamaica’s Sunsplash with “Mr. Lee’s Limited” sound system when they were discovered by the Tamika Record Company who relocated Mr. Lee’s whole system to Brooklyn, New York . Kelly spent several years touring the east coast with Mr. Lee before moving to Chicago. He was recently nominated in 5 categories at the  Chicago’s  Martin Inter-Culture Music Awards and have been honored as Chicago’s Best New Artist, Most Outstanding Personality, Best Stage Performance and Best DJ 3 times. Kelly’s new release “Hottie Gal” has been recognized as one of the best new releases in the Windy City.  The Chicago Tribune wrote of Kelly “Rankin’s performance was the high note of the 18th annual Rastafarian Festival in July”. The Best of Chicago Singers
10:00pm Inner Visions St. John in the US Virgin Islands is home to this unique sounding band. With over twenty-five years experience in the field of reggae music you'd probably ask yourself why you haven't heard of them before now. St. john is a tourist magnet in the Northeast Caribbean and work was never a problem. When they would visit there, Inner Visions would be a major highlight in their stay. Although Soca and Calypso music is the dominant art form, no stay was complete without an Inner Visions performance.   It was said to them over and over again that if they traveled they would blow up and become a household name! Well, It was not until 2001 did the band heed the call and did it's first official Stateside tour. It soon became evident to new fans that this band had something that had been missing in the field for years. Today they have a mystical mix of the young and the mature performing together to bring you a sound that touches people of all ages. The band is now joined by "Grasshopper's" two sons who has driven the band to heights previously unheard of. Their sound is a cultural journey through the the musical influences of yester-year! The band has been influenced by the who and who's in reggae. Burning Spear, Culture, Steel Pulse, Aswad, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Jacob Miller, Dennis Brown, Beres Hammond (Today) and w/Zap Pow, Third World, Inner Circle, Freddie McGreggor, Ernie Smith, Jimmy Cliff, Chalice, and oh so many more, helped shape the sound the band has presently. Inner Visions is an Independent organization. It boasts two strong lead vocalist and a three part harmony that will soothe the savage beast in anyone. They do their own productions and spend quite a bit to ensure that they give their fans the best quality recordings possible. If they show up to a gig late? Usually they had some sort of problem. This is a great record to have. "We hate being late" Says "Grasshopper," Our fans are worth the effort!" Usually they are quite early as they like to meet, and greet fans while they scout the neighborhood. They have traveled extensively now and the cry has been the same. "Where were you guys all this time? You are the Virgin Islands Best kept secret!" Well, they are a secret no more!!! So, take the plunge, “ride the waves,” and be inspired. But most of all get ready to meet the most wonderful group of musicians to have surfaced in a very long time. “They are simply marvelous! They are filled with so much love, it’s contagious! They’ve got that “Inner Visions!” InnerVisions
12:00am Hydro  Hydro Afro Reggae band featuring Doggie Ranks is the hottest Reggae band to come on the Chicago Reggae scène in the new millennium. Born and raised in Gana, West Africa Hydro relocated to Chicago in 1996. This eight piece band hits you with a distinguish Afro–Reggae rhythm. Influenced by great African Reggae artist such as Lucky Dube, Majek Fashek and Alpha Blondy. Hydro’s horns section is unmatched by any Midwest Reggae band. Hydro
Spinning Between Sets  The African Teacher I am a true born, raised and reggae brainwashed in a country called Malawi located in  Central African. My legal name is JOHN PANGANI and stage/radio nick name is THE AFRICAN TEACHER.   Started DJing in clubs when I was 18 years. Teamed with Malawian best Discos and DJs for DISCO DYNAMITE and COCKPIT DISCO.   Came in the USA in 1992.  1995 started club DJ again in the then South Bend popular Reggae CLub, MADISON OYSTER BAR.  Also promoted Reggae Bands shows in Indiana and Michigan area. Some of the bands includes GIZZAE , ROOTS, STEM, & BRANCHES and INDIKA out of Ohio and Chicago. Right away I got the attention of the area Radio Reggae DJ, David "Jah Dave" Alert, the founder and originator of the Reggae program, REGGAE STREET broadcasted on WSND 88.9 FM on Saturday nite from 10 pm til 12 am. Its frequency ranges about 100 miles radius and a little over 9,000 listeners. I was recruited in 2000 as a  Radio Reggae DJ.  A lot of listeners have called and gave me respect for my cool selection on air. I see Reggae music as an educational tool and during the air , I always highlight few lyrics that has meaning and emphasis them heavily to the audience.. that why I was given the stage name as The African Teacher...     Have MCed several Reggae events.  DJed several Reggae Fest between breaks in Kalamazoo, State Theatre, St Joseph, South Bend, Elkhart, Goshen just to mention a few.   It's a pleasure to be given a chance to do the same job at the IslandFest Kalamazoo.  For all my fans, COME to KALAMAZOO on June 24 & 25.. I got a lot of positive surprises for you both musically and lifestyle..  Let all keep Reggae Burning..........   TheAfricanTeacher... The African Teacher
SATURDAY JUNE 25th  
11:00am Festival begins Vendors will be serving foods characteristic of  the Caribbean and will have arts and crafts for sale.  Join us for Lunch, and check out the all-new Arcadia Festival Place.  Sample special Caribbean cocktails from Bacardi, or enjoy an ice cold Red Stripe.  
11:30am Lunch entertainment Tropical Mix  
2:00pm Family Workshop with The African Dance Ensemble family workshop
4:00pm Interactive performance with The African Dance Ensemble and Island Festival Audience Members The African Dance Ensemble and Island Festival Audience Members
6:00pm The Apes of Wrath The multi-talented members of the Apes of Wrath hail from backgrounds as diverse as their music.  Based in Goshen, Indiana the members have been with various previous bands including High Grade.  Drummer Jason began playing drums at the age of ten, while living in Kingston Jamaica.  Singer Melissa McQueen has been singing since she was a child and is quickly becoming recognized as a powerful voice in reggae.  Join the Apes of Wrath in their first Island Festival appearance!   TheApesofWrath
8:00pm Aswah Greggori and the Enforcers   A 20-year veteran of the Chicago music scene, Aswah is an artist who has paid his dues and earned his place. With his Chicago-based band, the Enforcers, Aswah has emerged as a local favorite booked with international bands on tour in the Windy City including Steel Pulse, Wailing Souls, Burning Spear, Yellowman, Israel Vibration Maxi Priest, Third World, Toots and the Maytals and Pato Banton. Off stage, Aswah is a man of few words -always humble, usually humorous, very subtle. His personal story is as inspiring as his lyrics and music. Born in Louisiana in 1946, Aswah came to Chicago after his Viet Nam experience to find work "somewhere other than the lumber mills" of Louisiana.   In 1971, a serious industrial accident, which severed his right arm, also changed his life forever. After surviving not only the accident but also the grueling arm re-attachment surgeries and therapy which followed, Aswah emerged with a new sense of purpose leading him into a full-time music career. Spiritually guided and unencumbered by traditional definitions of success ("Material possessions won't save you, only bring aggression, enslave you", he sings in 'Save You From Yourself', Aswah's message is man's healing from violence, drugs, hatred and jealousy. The music is his medium. From a musical standpoint, 'Save You From Yourself' mixes roots reggae with rock steady rhythms nicely. The title track, 'Fools & Rebels', causes the listener to reflect on how many of us fight with one another, when what we really need is tolerance and love for one another. The drums and horns give this song an up-to-date sound while remaining true to a roots and culture message. Aswah's versatility is evident on, 'This Train', an upbeat dancehall style track. It is refreshing to hear a spiritual teaching in this style of music. The echo of the train horn calls all of us to get on board God's plan for salvation and freedom. Aswah's voice is mesmerizing in all tracks, causing us to feel the lyrics deeply. Aswah
10:00pm  The Easy Star All-Stars (Performing Dub Side of the Moon) Dub Side Of The Moon is a Complete Reggae Version of Pink Floyd's Dark Side Of The Moon. The Easy Star All-Stars' stunning reinvention of this beloved record features entirely new recordings with guest vocal appearances by Frankie Paul, Corey Harris, Gary "Nesta" Pine (of the Wailers), The Meditations, Dr. Israel, Ranking Joe, Sluggy Ranks, and more. Every detail is there, from sound effects to Wizard of Oz synchronicity. THE BEAT May 2005, Volume 24 No. 2, by Tom Orr EASY STAR ALL-STARS’ DUB SIDE OF THE MOON At The Ragga Muffins Festival in Long Beach, CA, Feb, 19th, 2005 When the Easy Star All-Stars made Dub Side of the Moon two years ago, a crafty bit of reggae/rock crossover was achieved. Here was a complete reggae reworking of one of rock's most classic albums that kept intact many sonic nuances of the original while making bold changes (such as replacing guitar solos with dj chatting) that made the remake a classic in its own right. Performed live, the music not only held up well but absolutely soared, thanks to the All-Stars' supremely skilled and tight lineup of singers and players. Hearing such familiar songs as "Breathe," "Money." "Us and Them" and "Brain Damage" played onstage inna true reggae style brought a kind of hypnotically giddy feeling. Subdued but clearly awestruck, the crowd hung on every note, every word. The Easy Star crew was a very tough act to follow...  
12:00am Universal Xpression One band that is always in demand for events in the Caribbean-Michigan communities is Universal Xpression whose members have come together from the Caribbean Islands of Nevis, The Bahamas, Trinidad and Jamaica. Their driving, festive dance rhythms are key to dances, gatherings, parades, and carnival celebrations, and the group has been honored with the "Best Live Music" award for nine consecutive years at the Detroit Carnival Parade, as well as awards for Detroit's "Best Soca Band" and "Best Live Carnival Parade," in San Francisco, California. Richard Parris (keyboards, vocals) was born on the island of Nevis. Richard inherited his musical inclinations from his father, a well-known folk musician in the Eastern Caribbean; at the age of five Richard started playing steel drum music. His brother Noel (drums), was born on the island of St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands and also started playing at an early age. Noel has played drums with some of the notables in jazz music, has recorded many albums, and studied drums at the Manhattan School of Music where he excelled in African, Latin and Caribbean music. Mark "Reno" Borde (keyboards, rhythm box, vocals), the son of world famous Trinidadian pan player Hugh Borde, has also been playing music since he was a child. He has toured with his father on the Symphony Circuit that included playing with the late, great Liberace. Kelly Ann Stargill (vocals) grew up singing in the churches of Trinidad and has 10 years of experience in Caribbean music. Earl "Melloman" Clark (keyboards, vocals) is a native Detroiter but was born of Bahamian and Jamaican parentage. His father was one of the founding fathers of the Contours and his mother has sung with some of the greatest in gospel music; Earl began performing on stage at five years of age. American-born Queen Jahmana (vocals) is a Rastafarian who has molded her reggae music style after the I Threes and Marcia Griffiths. Lastly, Billy Noah (bass), is an American who was trained by Titus, one of Africa's premier drummers, and has studied the Wailers, Sly and Robbie and other greats of Jamaica. UXP is undoubtedly the most popular and hardest working Caribbean band in the Midwest. The band has won more awards and honors bestowed on any Caribbean band. They are an Three-time Winner of the Source News Music and Cultural Awards. “Caribbean Band of the Year”.  Their leader, Richard Parris is the Three-time Winners of the "Soca / Calypso Artist of the Year," while lead vocalist King Mellowman has also walked away three times with the "Reggae Artist of the Year." Universal Xpression