2009 Line Up
Food and Drink
For the Media
Thursday June 18, 2009
Dread I Sound System
I Sound System is the
champion of the dance in
hosting the weekly "Reggae Revolution" show on WIDR, 89.1 FM in
Kalamazoo to numerous club and concert appearances, Selector Jonathon is
quickly becoming the new evolution of reggae music in Kalamazoo!
Join Selector Jonathon
and his special guests including Slacky J. (WLUW-Chicago), DJ Assane,
The African Teacher (WSND-South Bend), and perhaps a surprise or two all
weekend at The Island Festival.
Mystic Dub is currently touring the Midwest region n lovin d crowds. We
wanna see MORE of you Roots Rock/Dancehall/Soca Reggae-lovin people out
there, too! We bring originals in all d above stylee as well as covers
by Bob Marley and the Wailers, Greggory Isaacs, Sister Carol, Marcia
Aitken/Sasha, and more! We are a four piece including d following
musicians: Hard-hittin' Drummy and vocalist Juan Carlos, Lead
Singer/Songwriter/Keyboardist-Raya RIME True, Sax/Melodica/Guitarist/Percussion
Mickey Mackenzie and bassist Simba Jahi.
A Tribute to Doggie
Ranks, Featuring Indika
As long as there has
been a reggae scene in Kalamazoo, Doggie Ranks was a part of it!
Originally from Jamaica and residing in Chicago, Doggie graced the stage
at Club Soda, The State Theatre, Bells, and has numerous explosive
appearances at The Island Festival, usually ending up with
about 50 women dancing on stage.
Despite the loss of
Doggie, the Indika Reggae Band continues to be a force to reckon with!
The Indika Reggae Band itself has won
several music awards in the Windy City. In addition to their own high
energy shows, they have also been honored to back international Reggae
artists such as Dennis Brown, Frankie Paul, Sugar Minott and U Roy. The
Members of Indika developed their talents on the island of Jamaica,
giving them an authentic sound. They perform old Reggae favorites with
new life, and add to the Reggae world with new original songs. You can
hear them weekly performing on TV as Jenny Jones "House Band." Recently
they were invited to perform at the Apollo Theatre in New York. If you
can't check them out in person, look for their two award winning CD's
"Proud 2-B your 'Budd'" and "Live at Exedus ll" at your local record
Tribute to Nathan Ndjharine Featuring Zion Lion
The past year has been a
difficult one for reggae fans in Kalamazoo, with the
loss of a true Lion of Zion, Nathan Ndjharine. His sudden passing
continues to seem unreal, as he has been one of the stalwart performers
at The Island Festival almost since the inception of the event.
With Yoroka, and Zion Lion, Nathan brought the message of One Love loud
and clear to Kalamazoo, and we were so fortunate to have him in our
lives! Please join Nathan's fans and friends as we say goodbye
Island Festival Style.
Nathan Performing at Island Festival
Reggae Band is the "baddest" band to hit Kalamazoo. Zion Lion is a
combination of several bands from the Kalamazoo area who crossed each
others path along the way and decided to form what we believe to be the
right mix of reggae, zouk, soukous, and afo-latin influences.
Zion Lion at Island Festival 2006
June 19, 2009
11:00am Gates Open
Join us for lunch
Gypsi Fari Duo
Veterans of numerous Island Festival's
Vince (left) and Bobby (right) are the backbone of the award winning Gypsi Fari band based in Chicago, IL. Always a crowd pleaser, the
Gypsi Fari duo will help set the mood for an Irie weekend!
Zion Lion at Island Festival 2006
Ras Soul Jah
Ras SoulJah is a
driving force in modern day reggae music. Ras SoulJah has a fresh and
original style' this dynamic band's obvious influences of early
traditional roots and culture remain evident in their music.
The Ras SoulJah Reggae Band is based upon the ideology of
positive and uplifting consciousness that is conveyed through their
reggae music. This band plays a variety of 'roots-n-culture' and ragga
style originals, as well as, popular cover tunes.
Ras SoulJah's is a
dynamic ensemble including members that hail from California, Detroit,
Chicago and other parts of the
. The evolution of Ras
SoulJah has spanned from the 1990s to present day. Ras
SoulJah is the creation of co-founders Timothy and La Donna Flynn. The
group began its origin with the formation of 'Tribal Culcha.' this band
specialized in a 'roots-n-culture' style. "Tribal Culcha's'
metamorphosis continued until 1999, adding lead vocalist Fada Wayne from
Kingston Jamaica, this ensemble then formed as the 'High Grade' reggae
band. In 2002, 'High Grade' disbanded and ultimately, the Ras SoulJah
reggae band was created.
marvelous group provides an amazingly energy pumping musical and
theatrical treat. Universal Xpression uplifts and captivates its
audiences with Caribbean rhythms such as reggae, soca, zouk, and dance
hall music, with an undertone of African, Latin and American rhythms.
Consequently, this rhythmic implementation has created a hypnotic groove
and a beautiful sound, with a universal appeal, thus making this group
the choice show band.
Xpression has thrilled thousands all over America, Canada and the
Caribbean at numerous venues: High schools, colleges, universities,
clubs, festivals, weddings, parades, corporate parties, and parks. In
twelve great years the group has built a tremendous fan base which
continues to grow with every performance. Seeing Universal Xpression
live is an awesome experience, strong and beautiful vocals, sweet
harmony, solid and tight groovy music topped off with wonderful
showmanship. You are embraced and involved in the mental, physical,
educational and emotional awe. Universal Xpression is ultimately
Ifficial Reggae Movement
Ifficial Reggae Movement
plays a diverse style of reggae that encompasses roots, lover's rock and
dancehall. The group is extremely diverse and able to please all
Livingston (Lead Vocals) has been surrounded by singers his entire
life. When he was a child, his mother and father sang in churches all
over his native island Jamaica. The Montego Bay born vocalist and
songwriter has a very unique and impressive style that displays the
smoothness of roots and lover’s rock, and the roughness of dancehall.
Livingston’s goal each performance is to electrify audiences, keeping
them wanting more.
Darryl (Bass) has been on the Reggae scene in Chicago for twenty
years. He has played with some of the best in Reggae, including Frankie
Paul, Nardo Ranks, Marcia Griffiths, and the legendary Dennis Brown. His
entrancing bass lines are bound to reel you in and have you at the
band’s mercy. Darryl a.k.a. Organized is also a dynamic singer and
deejay that you won’t want to miss.
Judah (Keyboards) has been a fixture on the reggae scene since 1989
when he was then playing the Bass. Judah's father urged him to start
playing the piano at an early age and he even formed an a cappella group
called the Soul Crusaders, singing all over the Midwest. He gave up his
music to pursue a career in business, but returned to his first love
upon the death of his father. In 1997 he formed a band and since that
time has also played with several local artists. Judah is also a
composer of conscious music that will leave you inspired.
Kelsey (drums) is a newcomer to the reggae scene, but don't let that
fool you. His enthusiasm will have you captivated. Kelsey comes from
generations of drummers and has been greatly inspired by gospel music.
Count on him being around for a long time with many great things to
Reggae Legend) Pato Banton
A Pato Banton concert is an event not to be missed and
an experience not to be forgotten.
Positive Vibrations abound with a beat to keep you on your dancing
feet, while Pato delivers a message that is food for the mind and soul.
Many have considered his charismatic performance as live theatre where
no show is alike and audience members become participants in the
experience. Pato dialogues with the crowd on a range of topics including
current day events and spiritual freedom while keeping the vibes upbeat
and fun! The direction of the concert is totally based on the
feedback Pato receives from the audience as there is no fixed set list.
Many have said that the positivity
generated from the stage has changed their lives forever. Sometimes
Pato invites his fans to join him in a prayer circle after the show,
where some have cried while sharing their stories of contemplated
suicide, isolation after losing a loved one, struggles with substance
abuse and how their personal connection with Pato has given them the
strength to “Stay Positive” & “Never Give In.”
The following Pato Banton story charts his rise from the most
disadvantaged of circumstances in his youth, through a long and
successful career as a world renowned reggae legend, back to his roots
with a commitment to work for the benefit of young people in his
community, and finally on a mission to spread the “Good News”
& “Positive Vibrations” to the “Now Generation”.
Rising Reggae Star-Zareb
(Aka Mr. Flash)
Zareb(Ranford Mc Curdy) was born and
raised in Clarendon, Jamaica. When he was a young man of sixteen he
realised there is nothing more for him than a life as one of the
common craftsmen, working with steel or as a carpenter. But this
kind of life didn’t meet Ranford’s expectations. That’s why he made
for Kingston, to escape of country life and to experience the world.
It was a hard time, living on Kingston’s streets with no assets and
no job. One day one of his friends took him along to one of the many
music studios in town. There Ranford, naturally more of a withdrawn
personality, found a way to express himself, his thoughts and
feelings. Singing became his passion. In the beginning he covered
Songs of his musical ideals Half Pint and Junior Reid, but soon he
developed his very own style and created his own lyrics. He felt he
finally found his determination and so he spent more and more time
in studios, as for example at Kilimanjaro’s, Anchor or Tuff Gong.
That’s how he got the first chance for a very own song recording on
the Stereo One Label. Using his then artist name Mr. Flash he
recorded several songs with his friend and Macka Tree Crew-Member
Fantan Mojah. This called the attention of many soundsystems and
producers. Bobby Digital, Lion Vibes und Calibud wanted to work with
him as well. Tracks like Rastafari ist he ruler are the results of
this collaboration. The scene was crazy about this one and
celebrated it as big tune as well as another tune called Authentic
Love. Combinations with Jah Mason and Perfect followed until he felt
it was time for a next step. This was 2006 when he changed his name
into Zareb. He didn’t want to leave his carrer to chance and
intended to work specificly on it to make his way as a respected
artists in the long run. At this time he met producer and label
manager Ingo from Pow Pow, who worked on one of his productions in
Jamaica. Direct from the start the vibes between the both musicians
were right and the idea of a joint project, Zareb’s debut album, was
born. Since that time there were numerous Live-Shows with Fantan
Mojah all around the world. Zareb used the chance to refine his
voice and stage presence. He now looks forward to the start of his
album Authentic Love, which is his first outright creation with a
spectrum of songs that allows him to express all aspects of his
personality and presents him as a matured artist, ready to enter the
world of reggae music.
You will hear a lot more from zareb keep listening ,JAH LIVE.
June 20, 2009
11:00am Gates Open
Join us for lunch
from the exotic isle of Dominica, Cleve “Hurricane” Jean Jacques has
been a professional musician since he could remember. Hurricane’s
musical career began at the tender age of fourteen, when he was
performing as lead guitarist and vocalist for the Island’s leading
band. Then Hurricane continued to develop in strength as a song
writer, musical arranger, and entertainer. In 1986, he entered the
arena of calypso and for the next fourteen years touched the hearts
and lives of people all over the world.
has performed in Europe, Central America, South America, Canada, the
United States, and almost all of the Caribbean
Islands. Hurricane has opened for or performed along side of Calypso
King of the World Mighty Sparrow, Arrow, Ziggy Marley, Shaggy,
Luciano, Morgan Heritage, Steel Pulse and more.
Presently, Hurricane resides in Chicago, heading the Hurricane band
and performing with some of the most talented professionals in the
industry. The band performs as a quartet or an orchestra featuring a
brass section or steel pan. Hurricane also performs as a solo artist
thrilling audiences with his true musical talent
Family Groove Workshop
Featuring Drumming Master Carolyn Kobel
What Carolyn will not tell you in her
biography, is that she is one of the best percussionists in the Midwest.
With a passion for playing, teaching, and sharing her gift she is truly
the "heartbeat of Kalamazoo". Join Carolyn and special guests as
they explore personal expression through drum and dance, and get
the kids involved!
Alright, here's the story-- You can check out
my eclectic fusion of drums and percussion in the following
incarnations: **Blue Dahlia** (www.myspace.com/bluedahliamusic) original
art music for film, dance, and more with Derek Menchinger:
acoustic/electric guitars/mandolin; Levi Strickland: bass and guitar;
Cara Lieurance: flutes and vocals; Leslie Boughton: lyrics/lead vocals;
**Fonn Mor** (www.fonnmor.com) high energy music from the Celtic
tradition with Curt Tramel: guitar/cittern/vocals; Rick Willey:
fiddle/mandolin/vocals; Katie McIlwie: button accordian/flutes; Rick
Stubbs: bass; **Dunuya Drum and Dance** (myspace.com/dunuyadrumanddance)
music of West Africa and the Diaspora with Calvin "Shangojinmi" Ruff:
percussion/vocals; Tommy Mac: percussion/lead djembe; Jennifer Nowlen:
vocals/percussion; Kama Mitchell, Dasan Mitchell, Jaidyn Kynaston, Love
Burkett, Heather Mitchell: dance; **The Skintones** (tribal trance
dance) with Tommy Ufkes, drum-set and special guests; **Rhonda Larson
and Ventus** (www.rhondalarson.com) classical/new age/world fusion from
one of the world's most talented flute players with Rich Ridenour,
The Pocket is a distinctly
original band that combines alternative rock with authentic reggae
roots. This combination creates an international sound for today's
selective audience. Incredible vocals, memorable lyrics and an
infectious stage energy always leaves listeners wanting more. For the
last two years, The Pocket has been touring the US and the Caribbean.
They have performed mainstage at the Air Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival
with icons Roberta Flack, Third World and Nora Jones. The Pocket also
had the honor of showcasing at The Bob Marley 60th Anniversary Festival
presented by Tuff Gong. During their Carribean tour, The Pocket lit up
the Jamaican coastline performing at Western Consciousness while
thousands of college spring breakers were also blown away by the party
all night performances at Margaritaville, Negril.
Washington DC based lead vocalist, Omar Teitelbaum, brings
extraordinary talent and unmistakable character to both the studio and
the stage. Originally from Jamaica, lead guitarist Terrence Brown,
musically guides the group with his insightful presence and positive
vibrations. Matt "Wonderboy" Wood, both keyboardist and rapper
extraordinaire, fits into the groove perfectly along with Nathan Read, a
dynamic 'lock it in the pocket' drummer. Bassist, Sean Meyers, lays down
a thick,deep groove accompanied by sultry background vocals to complete
the band's tapestry of sound.
The Pocket's highly aclaimed album "Out of Many One" mixed by
Errol Brown (Bob Marley's main engineer) has seen international
success. The first two pop reggae singles "Lila Rose" and "Oceanside”
(Rooftop in Kingston) are quickly gaining recognition and respect in
Jamaica on Irie FM, Zip and many other radio stations. The Pocket has
also performed at some of the best live music venues in the US such
as: 9:30 Club in Washington DC, Fox Theater in Boulder, CO and
Malibu Inn in Los Angeles. Incredible vocals, great lyrics, and a
strong reggae influence, this is something truly unique. The Pocket is
a dedicated band with an ever-growing fan base and are poised and
prepared to take it to the next level in Jamaica, The United States and
beyond. . .
Taj Weekes and Adowa
Weekes & Adowa present a brand new experience in classic roots reggae.
With wry trenchant lyrics, a haunting dusky quiver in his voice and the
knock-down sound of his band Adowa, Taj Weekes has managed to weave a
rare social consciousness with an unforgettable reggae groove.
From every corner
of the planet, people are responding to the
authenticity of Taj Weekes’ spirit, heart and
commitment to a world where people can
communicate with one another to solve issues
non-violently. Taj’s commitment to such a world
is backed up by his non-profit organization,
They Often Cry Outreach,
dedicated to improving the lives of
disadvantaged children around the world via
music, soccer programs and more. In conjunction
with LIFEbeat, TOCO is helping to raise
awareness of HIV/AIDS in Caribbean communities.
For those that
have been disadvantaged, abandoned or just
alienated by a power structure that values
profit over people and fear over hope, Taj
Weekes and his new album DEIDEM
speaks for them in its refusal to forget those
left out of the new "global economy" and in his
continued belief in what is possible through
authentic music and real communication.
Legends - Culture
has long been reggae’s preeminent harmony group. Born in the
70's golden age of reggae, the ever viable Culture has garnered
continual US and international acclaim for its long series of classic
“roots” albums. Culture’s legendary “Two Sevens Clash” (Shanachie) was
Reggae Album of the Year in 1977 and is acknowledged by Rolling Stone
Magazine (April 11, 2002) as #25 of the 50 all time coolest records (the
only reggae album to make the list).
Culture’s music, featuring the shining
lead vocals of Joseph Hill, is solidly roots, perfectly executed and
delivered with genuine emotional fervor. Joseph Hill’s devotion to the
traditional Rastafarian values of purity, simplicity and justice is
exemplified by Culture’s lyrical themes. Milo Miles,
writing for The New York Times, named Culture as “the leading
exponent of ‘conscious reggae’”. Hill’s message is clear and
uplifting. His songwriting abilities are outstanding and music
reviewers have lauded his achievements for two decades.
In 1976 Joseph and his cousin Albert
Walker had formed a trio whose name evolved into Culture with the
release of the mythic “Two Sevens Clash.” Joseph Hill performed solo
under the name Culture and recorded several projects during the early
eighties; he and Albert subsequently reunited and produced a long series
of critically acclaimed recordings. In fact, Culture’s entire body of
work (over 28 albums) can be recommended almost without exception.
Noted albums such as “Nuff Crisis”, “Cumbolo,” and “Wings of a Dove”
virtually define the “roots” genre.
On August 19, 2006 while on tour in
Europe, Joseph Hill passed suddenly and decisions for the future of the
tour and the group had to be made quickly. The European promoters of the
upcoming dates requested the group to continue the tour as a Tribute to
Joseph Hill. It was then that his son Kenyatta stepped away from the
soundboard and picked up his father’s microphone. Kenyatta was familiar
with all of the music and was perfect for the role of new lead singer
for Culture. The tour went on
without pause and show after show,
audiences, promoters and critics alike were amazed at the way in which
Kenyatta was so much like his father onstage while introducing an
element of his own. One critic’s comment stands out. He summed it up by
saying “It was more magic than tragic”. It happened again in Bahia
Brazil at a festival on Sept 2. The final proof that Kenyatta was the
logical choice took place in Jamaica at the memorial concert for Joseph
Hill on the weekend of the funeral. There was no doubt that when
Kenyatta stepped up and performed, that he was the highlight of the star
is no better way to close the 14th annual Island festival, other than
with our good friends Zion Lion!
Zion Lion Reggae Band is the "baddest"
band to hit Kalamazoo. Zion Lion is a combination of several bands
from the Kalamazoo area who crossed each others path along the way and
decided to form what we believe to be the right mix of reggae, zouk,
soukous, and afo-latin influences.