Many reggae fans do not agree with the moniker. How can you have a reggae revival when reggae was neither sick, dead nor fallen down? The truth is, reggae has always been alive and well but it was being overshadowed by its undisciplined, gone-astray child known as dancehall.
One of the major players in the reggae revival movement is Kabaka Pyramid and he is getting ready to set off on a huge tour of North America, Latin America, Europe and Africa.
“It’s called The Contraband tour, taking its name from my upcoming album. We want to release this album at the end of October, so everything we do on this tour is about promoting this album. It’s club dates mixed with the major festivals for the summer. Normally we would do the festivals at this time of year, but we have decided to include clubs, especially in North America which does not have enough festivals, but we still want to spread the music,” Kabaka Pyramid told 18 Karat Reggae.
The European leg commences at the New Morning festival in the French capital, Paris, on June 15. From there it is on to Bristol, London and Manchester in the United Kingston. On June 24 and 25, the Reggae Fever Festival in the Netherlands gets its taste of Kabaka Pyramid and his Bebble Rock Band. The Couleur Café Festival in Brussels, Belgium, is on June 30.
For the month of July, the artiste and his team will play festivals and other gigs in Portugal, Germany, Austria, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Spain, before he returns to Jamaica for the final night of Reggae Sumfest on July 22.
“This is our second time at Reggae Sumfest and it’s a joy to do this. We always have to bring our ‘A’game. We will be testing some of the new material from the album, as well as giving the people the music they know and love.”
His Jamaican stop marks the end of his dates on the European continent and the start of shows in North America.
The North West World Reggae Festival in Marcola, Oregon, gets the ball rolling on July 29. From there its two dates; August 3 and 4 at the renowned Reggae on the River festival in Myers Flat, California. The Rhode Island Reggae Festival in Providence is on August 12.
Kabaka Pyramid moves on to Canada on August 19 for RastaFest in Toronto before returning to the United States for a show at the Ocean Music Hall in Salisbury, Massachusetts.
Kabaka Pyramid noted that there is a marked difference in performing locally and on tour.
“With Jamaicans, the focus is always on the familiar music, so you have to come strong and go hard to impress them with the music that they know. On tour overseas I am able to test new things as the audience is more willing to listen and generally just have a good time,” he stated.
Kabaka’s tour is beginning just as fellow reggae revivalist, Chronixx, is completing his tour. Chronixx was joined on tour by Jah9 who is also a reggae revivalist, solid proof that the movement is strong and will not be slowing down anytime soon. Even if “Reggae Revival” is not a fitting name for the movement, it is a movement that should be cherished and embraced by reggae fans worldwide.