Two years ago while surfing the internet, I discovered a reggae sound-system by the name of Kebra Ethiopia, who was based in South Africa. Their unique style of “selecting” drew me in immediately… and the Zulu infused Skanking that accompanied their fiery selections made the experience even more interested.
Two years later, I booked a trip to South Africa and set out to find Kebra Ethiopia and experience them in real time. I contacted Doc Inity, the main selector on the sound, via Instagram and we exchanged numbers. I agreed to meet up at a Soweto Street party, but unfortunately I arrived a bit later than planned and missed him.
However I was able to secure some good herbs (big up Joint Pusher) and I took in the authentic street vibes. NOTHING IS BETTER THAN REGGAE IN THE GHETTO. This is where it is from… the streets. To see an entire community out in unity enjoying reggae… it was the height of my trip to SA. The steppas were on board, the herbs was blazing, the vibes were flowing. THIS IS REGGAE, I thought a few times that night… real reggae.
I met a young woman by the name of Starr Zulu (shown above) who was very knowledgable about the reggae scene and offered to be my guide. So we exchanged info and are currently planning for my return in December. For those who say “REGGAE IS DEAD” in South Africa… NO it isn’t. Its very much alive, but you will have to go to the ghetto to find it. Stay tuned, I will return SA.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: TALENTED TUFF GONG ARTISTES
‘Spectacular’ doesn’t even begin to describe the blazing performances of our very own Tuff Gong International artistes that took to the stage at 56 Hope Road to help us to celebrate Bob Marley’s 74th Earth Strong.
The hot Tuff Gong International artistes
for the Catch a Fire Celebrations
MDeez (Instagram: @mdeezmusic)
Tuff Like Iron (Instagram: @tufflikeiron)
Reggae Powerhouse Band
Aaron Nigel Smith
One by one, they delivered a crowd-pleasing performance that Lively Up the Reggae Jam Session. Their significant contribution to the 74th Earth Strong Celebration had a profound impact on the success of this event. We thank you.
See you next year!
This past Saturday (March 9) rising reggae band Royal KhaoZ graced the 9 Mile Music Festival stage for the first time ever. Performing alongside some greats, they had the pleasure of joining the lineup with Nas, Julian Marley, Capleton, Sizzla and more. I would love to schedule an interview for you to chat with the guys about their 9 Mile experience.
They were exclusively featured on News 12 The Bronx last week for their “Best of the Bronx” series and recently premiered their latest single “Show Me Your Motion,” on largeup.com, which is also featured on the TIDAL Rising Reggae Playlist. As they gear up for their sophomore LP, due out later this year, they continue to push the bar with reggae music on the forefront of mainstream platforms all while spreading empowering messages with popular tunes like “Walk with Jah,” a hit from their 2016 EP, Release the Pressure.
This Bronx based group is steadily hitting the music waves. They have already worked with some of the most renowned reggae legends (Toots & the Maytals, The Wailers, Kranium, Luciano, Sister Nancy, and Roots Percussionist of Chronixx & the Zincfence Redemption) over the years. Thriving on their roots and culture, Royal KhaoZ’s music focuses on positivity, love, and empowerment.
Not only do they make music but they create a safe space for other artists to do the same. On Thursdays they host a live intimate jam session, Voice Out Jams, in their Bronx recording studio where they encourage and invite all creatives to share their artistry in a safe and supportive environment. The likes of Junior Reid, Juno award winning Canadian Reggae artist Kirk Diamond, Roots Percussionist, Keisha Martin, Kiprich, Derrick Morgan, Lila Aike, Shuga, New Kingston, Naomi Cowan, Carlene Davis, dancehall artist Kemar Highcon, Alandon, and more have already blessed the stage with their presence. Click here to view one of the sessions – you can check the band out at the 19:50 mark.
About Royal KhaoZ
Dretegs, Bama, and Coco, who have been members since its inception formed the band in 2010 right in the Bronx and have been producing heartfelt and powerful tunes ever since. DamDrumz and Vassell, always familiar with the band’s work, plays on the drums and percussion. Thriving on their roots and culture, Royal KhaoZ’s music focuses on positivity, love, and empowerment. Every one of their songs leave a lasting message that can reach any listener. The band possesses the ability to represent reggae in its truest form, while tastefully applying their own twist to traditional and conventional sounds. Drawing influences from soul, funk, pop, and rock, the group prides themselves on creating raw and organic reggae fusion.