Voices of the 2017 Austin Reggae Festival: Angela Tharp of Flamingo Cantina

QUESTION: Outside of bands performing at this year’s Austin Reggae Festival, what dub / world music acts are you most excited about these days?

The Reggae Revival artists are bringing the roots back to reggae and in light of the current socio-political environment it seems to be perfect timing for this movement. Jah 9, Kabaka Pyramid, Chronixx, and Protoje are some of the artists that are gaining ground and producing great messages through their music.



QUESTION: What advice do you have people who are coming to a show at Flamingo Cantina for the first time?

Leave your cares at the door, bring your positive vibes and the healing can begin. I believe that we provide a place for community and healing through music. We host a free weekly reggae show every Wednesday with the Mau Mau Chaplains; many people tell me upon their first experience that they feel they have “been to church.”



QUESTION: What advice to you have for people coming to the Austin Reggae Festival for the first time?

Bring your good vibes, perhaps a hat, sunscreen and a blanket to sit ‘pon. Be prepared to be entertained! From the awesome artists to the people watching, the experience is like no other. We also have many wonderful vendors that provide a great shopping experience. The artists will meet and greet at the Merch Tent near the stage selling CDs and signing autographs.

QUESTION: What is your favorite Bob Marley song and why?

Bob’s “One Love” encompasses struggle, unity and spirituality and is still as relevant today as it was when it was written. If everyone took that message to heart, our society would be better off as a whole.

QUESTION: Of the various Marley family members who are now touring, which one is your favorite and why?

Hmm, goodness, hard to say. I’ve always been a fan of Damian, but his brothers are also so talented. One year I hosted a Stephen, Julian Marley and Damian concert. It was amazing. Even with their success and Marley name, they remain down to earth, conscious people.


QUESTION: If you weren’t managing Flamingo (and booking talent for the Austin Reggae Festival), what would you be doing with your life?

Being blessed to have owned and operated Flamingo Cantina for the last 25 years, it’s hard to imagine what I would do other than this, but I enjoy producing events and working with artists, so my goals would be involved with those aspects on some level.



QUESTION: We have had rainy weather at the Austin Reggae Festival in 2015 and 2016. Is it going to rain this year?

We are due for some sunshine that weekend! No rain!


QUESTION: If you had unlimited resources to book any band in the world to play the 2018 Austin Reggae Festival, what band would it be?

Burning Spear!

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