Lee “Scratch” Perry | Twilight Concert Series | Santa Monica Pier | 8/28/14 [PHOTOS]

CLICK HERE to check out other acts performing a Twilight Concert at the Santa Monica Pier!

Lee “Scratch” Perry. The Upsetter. A Grammy award winning, seminal Jamaican reggae producer whose innovative production techniques redefined reggae music as we know it. And he graced the stage with the Subatomic Sound System at the Santa Monica Pier for the Twilight Concert Series. Wow.


At 78 years old, I was impressed with how spry and energetic the Upsetter was. Performing some classic reggae tunes (i.e. “Sun Is Shining”) and doing his best to jump around the stage (literally), he got the crowd feeling irie. If the weed in the air was any indication, the crowd was definitely plenty irie. lol.


I do have to admit, I was a little surprised with some of what he was singing/speaking towards the end of the set. He spent several minutes singing about how much he “loves white pussy”. I wasn’t sure where it came from, but he was preaching it to the crowd. He also mentioned how much he loved the white man for “paying his bills.” I saw a few confused faces in the crowd.


Perhaps, his biggest “rant” came at the very end where repeatedly insisted that “hip-hop was dead, reggae is live.” Perhaps, making reggae loving hip-hop heads in the crowd a bit uncomfortable. Well, they don’t call him The Upsetter for nothing.


I couldn’t find a setlist online, but you can CLICK HERE to check out a collection of Instagram Videos of Lee “Scratch” Perry and Subatomic Sound System performing.


CLICK HERE to check out other acts performing a Twilight Concert at the Santa Monica Pier!

The 28th Annual JazzReggae Festival | UCLA | May 25th & 26th [PHOTOS]


Every Memorial Day weekend for the past 28 years, UCLA has hosted a music festival called the JazzReggae Festival. Originally, the first day was devoted to Jazz and the second day was devoted Reggae. Though the first day has morphed to a “Jam” day, the festival has always been able to pull in outstanding talent for the price of admission. If you are ever in Los Angeles during the Memorial Day weekend, and looking to enjoy a music festival at an extremely reasonable price, I suggest that you check out the lineup to see if any artists you like are on the bill.

Armed with a photo pass for the event, I was able to take pictures of the artists listed below. Click on the link to check them out!

May 25th, 2014:

  1. The Internet
  2. Aloe Blacc
  3. Snoop Dogg

May 26th, 2014

  1. Kevin Lyttle
  2. Gramps Morgan
  3. Black Uhuru
  4. Ky-Mani Marley

Ky-Mani Marley | UCLA Jazz Reggae Fest | 5/26/14 [PHOTOS]


Bob Marley had a number of children. The Bob Marley official website acknowledges eleven children. Of those eleven, 7 of them are musicians. One of them closed out UCLA’s Jazz Reggae Festival: Ky-Mani Marley.

Ky-Mani’s set was filled with the good vibes that everybody who came to the festival expected. It was also a family affair. No, none of Bob’s other siblings dropped by for an unexpected  performance, but Ky-Mani did have his son join him onstage for a song or two, infusion a little hip-hop into the reggae dominant set.

Fans left the festival feeling irie, the way it should be. UCLA did a good job of procuring talent for the Memorial Day weekend. Hopefully next year’s lineup will be equally impressive.

I couldn’t find a setlist for Ky-Mani Marley’s  performance at this event online, so if anybody happens to know what it was, please post it in the comments so that I can add it into this post. Thanks!


Black Uhuru | UCLA Jazz Reggae Fest | 5/26/14 [PHOTOS]


If you are into reggae, there are two acts you need to know: Bob Marley and Black Uhuru.

Black Uhuru is a Jamaican reggae group that was founded back in 1972. Though the lineup has changed over the years, there is still one original member still playing with the band: Derrick “Duckie” Simpson. Though perhaps not as beloved as Bob Marley, music lovers need to know that Black Uhuru won the first Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album in 1985 and really raised the profile of reggae music to new levels back in the 1980s.

When I heard that they were playing at the UCLA Jazz Reggae Festival, I knew that I had to seem them while “Duckie” was still fronting the band (To note, Derrick changed his name to Derrick “Gong” Simpson”). To be honest, it’s one of those opportunities that I, as a music lover, needed to take advantage of. Not to be morbid or anything, but if I’m going to see a band that’s had such an impact on music, generally, I at least want to see them perform with at least on of the original member on vocals.

I can only imagine what it would have been like to see the line-up of Derrick, Michael Rose, Sandra “Puma” Jones, Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare performing their hits back in the mid-80s, but at this point, in 2014, I’ll take what I can get. To be up close to the stage to see one of the reggae’s major influences performing was something that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.


I couldn’t find a setlist for Black Uhuru’s performance at this event online, so if anybody happens to know what it was, please post it in the comments so that I can add it into this post. Thanks!


Gramps Morgan | UCLA Jazz Reggae Fest | 5/26/14 [PHOTOS]


Roy “Gramps” Morgan has reggae music in his blood. After all,  Denroy Morgan, a founding member of the Black Eagles, is his father. Though he’s only release two albums, his most recent album, “Reggae Music Lives”, was well received and peaked at #12 on the Billboard Top Reggae Albums list.

His set was was filled with passion and he definitely had the crowd vibing off of his energy.

I couldn’t find a setlist for Gramps Morgan’s performance at this event online, so if anybody happens to know what it was, please post it in the comments so that I can add it into this post. Thanks!


Bob Marley (6 February 1945 – 11 May 1981) | My Favorite Live Videos


Today, February 6th, 2013, is Bob Marley’s birthday. Taken from his Wikipeidia:

Nesta Robert Marley OM (6 February 1945 – 11 May 1981) was a Jamaican singer-songwriter who achieved international fame through a series of crossover reggae albums. Starting out in 1963 with the group the Wailers, he forged a distinctive songwriting and vocal style that would later resonate with audiences worldwide. The Wailers would go on to release some of the earliest reggae records with producer Lee Scratch Perry. After the Wailers disbanded in 1974, Marley pursued a solo career which culminated in the release of the album Exodus in 1977 which established his worldwide reputation. He was a committed Rastafarian who infused his music with a profound sense of spirituality.”

There is a lot of music out there, but there was something about Bob’s music that evoked a mystic sentiment. It can be a rainy day, or you could be snowed in, but as soon as you press play on one of his records, I guarantee your spirits will be lifted … with or without “herbal” supplements.

The first Bob Marley CD I owned was “Legend”. I purchased it at a used CD store in college town during my sophomore year with the money I had earned the previous weekend serving beers at a frat party.  I had just started dating a girl around the time of the purchase and as I placed the disc into my Discman to listen on the walk back to my apartment, I remember hearing the simple love song “Is This Love”. It felt like Bob was feeling what I was feeling, and at that moment I felt a connection to his words and music … a connection that is often hard to come by these day. Though the relationship with the girl ran its course after graduation, I remember one of the first songs I played in order to cope with the loss was “No Woman No Cry” off the same CD. At that moment, no other song, except perhaps Brian McKnight’s “One Last Cry”, helped me to deal with the heartache. I came full circle with Bob, and I am certainly glad he was there for me.

Bob Marley is one of the most important musical, and social, figures in music history. I have compiled a few of the videos I found online that I enjoyed. I hope you enjoy each of them and fall in love with his music like I did.

If you have the spare time, this full live concert is a great view and a good collection of his amazing music:

1.Positive Vibration 1:20
2.Wake Up and Live 6:30
3.I Shot the Sheriff 11:45
4.Ambush in the Night 16:20
5.Concrete Jungle 20:10
6.Running Away 25:10
7.Crazy Baldhead 28:40
8.Them Belly Full 33:20
9.Heathen 36:42
10.Ride Natty Ride 41:15
11.Africa Unite 45:25
12.One Drop 49:55
13.Exodus 54:00
14.So Much Things to Say 1:00:10
15.Zimbabwe 1:03:40
16.Jamming 1:07:45
17.Is This Love 1:12:45
18.Kinky Reggae 1:16:00
19.Stir It Up 1:19:35
20.Get Up Stand Up 1:23:15