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Vendor Spaces at 2019 Austin Reggae Festival

The 2019 Austin Reggae Festival includes three days of outstanding music, a generous selection of international food options, plus an exciting array of arts & crafts vendors. We still have a few of these spaces open for this April in Austin. If you are interested in applying for one of these arts & craft vendor spots, then please email pwccostigan at yahoo dot com.

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Reggae News You Can Use For Jan 22, 2019


Your daily dose of international reggae news for MLK Day on Monday, January 21!

Buju Banton criticized for comparing himself to Nelson Mandela
February 2019 is reggae’s golden anniversary month in Jamaica
I-Reef ready for new release “Govern the Road”

Also, mark your calendar for April 19-21, which are the dates for the 2019 Austin Reggae Festival. Tickets go on sale on Friday, February 1.

The 2018 Austin Reggae Festival raised $129,543.14 to help feed hungry Central Texas families. Let’s do even better in April 2019!

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Reggae News You Can Use For Jan 21, 2019

Your daily dose of international reggae news for MLK Day on Monday, January 21!

Awa Fall talks about her new release “Words of Wisdom”
Bobi Wine’s powerful performance at the Rebel Salute Festival
Mighty Mystic announces new album “Enter the Mystic”

Also, mark your calendar for April 19-21, which are the dates for the 2019 Austin Reggae Festival. Tickets go on sale on Friday, February 1.

The 2018 Austin Reggae Festival raised $129,543.14 to help feed hungry Central Texas families. Let’s do even better in April 2019!

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Reggae News You Can Use For Jan 20, 2019


Your daily dose of international reggae news for Sunday, January 20!

Ed Sheeran continues to refine his reggae street cred
Jäh Division set for January 24 release
Welcome To Jamrock Cruise sold out for 2019

Also, mark your calendar for April 19-21, which are the dates for the 2019 Austin Reggae Festival. Tickets go on sale on Friday, February 1.

The 2018 Austin Reggae Festival raised $129,543.14 to help feed hungry Central Texas families. Let’s do even better in April 2019!

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Reggae News You Can Use For Jan 19, 2019

Your daily dose of international reggae news for Saturday, January 19!

Koffee answers five questions from the Jamaica Gleaner
Nattali Rize delivers to the masses on her new “Evolutionary” video
Spice battles to get out of her contract with VP Records

Also, mark your calendar for April 19-21, which are the dates for the 2019 Austin Reggae Festival. Tickets go on sale on Friday, February 1.

The 2018 Austin Reggae Festival raised $129,543.14 to help feed hungry Central Texas families. Let’s do even better in April 2019!

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ATX Sound System: January 18, 2019

New Album: Eye Judah
Glued to the ATX Sound turntable this week is the debut LP from Ghana’s rising reggae star Eye Judah, entitled Genesis. Since first emerging in 2015, Eye Judah (real name Bernard Okaiteh) has been regularly name-dropped by such Ghanaian reggae royalty as Samini (who guests on one of the tracks here) and Stonebwoy. While the album shares multiple producers, the most notable tracks here are the ones produced by Vincent Mensah. Better known as Beatz Dakay, Mensah was previously the beatmaker behind many of Stonebwoy’s bigger hits. His production style is unexpectedly spare, with a surprising amount of space left between the beats and the instruments. The resulting effect is thoroughly intriguing: The beats feel remarkably rhythmic and percussive, and yet they contain far less actual percussion than your typical reggae riddim. The track “Nuh Play” is a perfect example. Be sure to check it out on the Austin Reggae Fest Playlist on Spotify.

 

Classic Album: Freddie McGregor

In the coming weeks, we’ll be looking at classic tracks and LPs recorded by artists performing at Austin Reggae Festival 2019. We kick it off this week with the timeless Freddie McGregor and his 1981 album, Big Ship. McGregor was, and remains, a devout Rastafarian who wasn’t afraid to address religious or social concerns in his music. But he could also channel his love of American R&B to deliver some of the sweetest Lovers Rock. Here, the two sides of McGregor combine seamlessly to create probably our favorite album in the Jamaican legend’s catalog. Credit also goes to the team behind this recording: The Roots Radics band, producer Lynval Thompson and mixer Scientist. Fans of Scientist will know that some of his most iconic output in the early 80s utilized Roots Radics sessions produced by Thompson, so the young King Tubby protege is right at home adding his magic touch here. It’s especially evident during the fadeouts and on the drum tracks, which reverberate throughout the album as though they were recorded at the bottom of a well. Wonderful stuff. At one point or another, McGregor would work with every notable producer in the game–from Coxsone Dodd at Studio One to Winston “Niney The Observer” Holness–but Thompson (an artist-turned-producer who, a the time, had only recently returned to Jamaica after completing a studio engineering course in New York) delivers a bonafide classic with Big Ship. In fact, McGregor would end up naming his record label after it! You can check out both original and dub versions from these sessions on the Austin Reggae Fest Playlist on Spotify.

 

This Week’s Austin Reggae Fest Spotify Playlist

Click here to hear the dub sounds we have been listening to the last few days.

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Reggae News You Can Use For Jan 17, 2019

Your daily dose of international reggae news for Thursday, January 17!

Bob Marley estate to sell CBD-Infused drinks
“Famalay” jumps to the top of iTunes most downloaded reggae list
Lee Scratch Perry to celebrate birthday with special UK show

Also, mark your calendar for April 19-21, which are the dates for the 2019 Austin Reggae Festival. Tickets go on sale on Friday, February 1.

The 2018 Austin Reggae Festival raised $129,543.14 to help feed hungry Central Texas families. Let’s do even better in April 2019!

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Reggae News You Can Use For Jan 15, 2019

Your daily dose of international reggae news for Tuesday, January 15!

Etana secures US media appearances ahead of Grammys
Flyaway to Jamaica via Santigold contest
Her new single “Ready” is generating buzz for Schen

Also, mark your calendar for April 19-21, which are the dates for the 2019 Austin Reggae Festival. Tickets go on sale on Friday, February 1.

The 2018 Austin Reggae Festival raised $129,543.14 to help feed hungry Central Texas families. Let’s do even better in April 2019!

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2019 Tickets on Sale Friday, February 1

Tickets for the 2019 Austn Reggae Festival go on sale on Friday, February 1. Stay tuned to this site for complete details.

Talent for this year’s event includes Mykal Rose, Cocoa Tea, Don Carlos, Etana, Freddie McGregor, Hempress Sativa, The Late Ones and many more.

For 2019, the Austin Reggae Festival again helps the Central Texas Food Bank feed thousands and thousands of hungry families.

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ATX Sound System: January 11, 2019

Double Barrell

This week, we’ve had the surprise new mixtape from Deadly Dragon Sound in heavy rotation. Deadly Dragon is a sound system that originated in Chicago in the 1990s before relocating to New York City in the 2000s. Their Chinatown record shop was a mecca for serious collectors and selectors (before rising rents forced its closure in 2016), and their weekly residencies at various downtown clubs became a centerpiece of New York’s reggae scene. Thankfully, Deadly Dragon’s founder, Scratch Famous, still dips into his massive collection a few times each year to bless us with a new mixtape. Several years ago, he created one devoted to so-called “gunman” tunes called “Year of The Gun”. While gun imagery goes way back in Jamaica (think: “The Harder They Come” film), it certainly hit a peak in the 90s when dancehall began taking cues from American gangsta rap. Scratch’s “gun tune” mix was both popular and controversial upon its release in 2004. Some challenged that he was glorifying Jamaica’s pervasive gun violence, while others commended its’ in-depth chronicle of this long-running theme in Jamaican music. Well, it seems Scratch decided to start off 2019 with a bang (ahem), surprising everyone with a follow-up mix, some 15 years later, called “Year of the Gun Part 2”. For this one, he’s dug even deeper than before, assembling a collection of rare gunman vinyl cuts from artists such as Junior Cat, Spragga Benz and Ricky General that is all at once silly, scary, entertaining and fascinating.

 

Rude Boy No Powder

Despite the entertainment factor of gunman tunes, gun violence is also a deadly serious (and often glorified) fact of life in Jamaica, and has been so ever since the days of “Johnny Too Bad” and the outlaw legend Ivanhoe (aka “Rhyging“). Nobody is immune to it: From Peter Tosh and Prince Far-I to King Tubby and Winston Riley (to name but a few), numerous Jamaican recording stars and producers have been the fatal victim of someone wielding a gun. Heck, even Bob Marley only just narrowly escaped being shot to death. Ironically, Winston Riley, the man behind Sister Nancy’s legendary “Bam Bam”, was also the writer of one of reggae’s first big international hits, “Double Barrel” (by Dave and Ansell Collins). The DJ and writer S.h. Fernando, Jr. takes an intriguing look at this phenomenon in his piece “Murder Dem: The Turbulent Saga of Reggae Stars and Violent Crime”. It’s a sobering reality check that you can read while listening to the mix of gun tunes above. In it, he asks why so many prominent Jamaican artists have been killed or incarcerated. One month on from Buju Banton’s early release from prison (and following another year in which an imprisoned Vybz Kartel continued to rule the Jamaican charts), it remains a potent question. One prominent theory is echoed in the piece by On-U Sound founder (ad Prince Far-I collaborator) Adrian Sherwood, who points to pervasive poverty and the fact that Jamaica’s young people “respect the gunman, because they have little to no opportunity otherwise.”

 

This Week’s Austin Reggae Fest Spotify Playlist

Click here to hear the dub sounds we have been listening to the last few days.

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