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Video: Pepper – “Around” (Live Acoustic)

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Our good friends at Sugar Shack recorded a live-acoustic version of “Around” with the Pepper guys. The song is the last track off their last studio album Ohana. The album was released April 2016 and just recently the group put out a new single, “Good Thing Going” featuring Slightly Stoopid — You can read more on that update by clicking HERE! The are rumored plans for a new album to drop in 2018 as we hope to bring you some details with our 2018 Most Anticipated Albums feature to come January 2nd. In the meantime enjoy this awesome live acoustic performance of “Around.”

This entry was posted on Sunday, December 10th, 2017 at 2:37 pm and is filed under Daily News, Law Records.
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MP3 Leak of the Week: The Ries Brothers

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Our own Brian Glaser would not stop raving about this young duo of brothers who perform music as The Ries Brothers. They just released their first full-length record, The View From The Outside, which was, in part, produced by Ted Bowne of Passafire. We’re giving away their song “Echoing Dream” as we catch up with the duo to discuss the song as we further spotlight this excellent debut record.

You can download The Ries Brothers new song “Echoing Dream,” for FREE, on our home page under the MP3 Leak of the Week on the right hand column! This Download will only be available until Saturday, Dec 9th, 2017.

The Ries Brothers – “Echoing Dream” — Download HERE (on The Pier homepage)

The Ries Brothers – “Echoing Dream” Background:

Since the duo’s inception, they have released 3 EP’s and a Live Concert DVD. Their first full legnth album, The View From The Outside, was released on November 10, 2017. As our own Brian Glaser puts its, “Musically, the album has pretty much anything the listener could ask for. From bluesy and rock-driven guitar riffs, soothing and soaring vocals and reggae-led instrumentals throughout the 13-track effort, the creativity from the breakthrough duo is equally refreshing as impressive.”

It certainly is and to think that one of the two brothers isn’t even 21-years-old yet. The duo consist of brothers Charlie (lead vocals, drums and The Ries Brothers Coverkeyboard bass) and Kevin (lead guitar and backing vocals). “I got into reggae and was immediately inspired by artists like Rebelution, Slightly Stoopid, Nattali Rize, and Stick Figure,” says Kevin. “I was so connected by the lyrics and music of these bands.”

That’s what lead him to writing new song “Echoing Dream.” He continues, telling The Pier: “It was the first song I wrote after spending months and months of listening and studying reggae music… After sitting down and giving it my own shot, I wrote ‘Echoing Dream’ in only 2 writing sessions. This song has a special place in my heart. Everything seemed to flow out as I was writing it.”

The song is inspired by their personal and professional goals in life as Kevin elaborates: “The term, ‘Echoing Dream,’ for me is having something you’ve wanted to do for a while, echo in your mind, and finally following through with a dream that you’ve wanted for a while. I think this is relatable to everyone because we all have huge goals and dreams, and life is too short to not think about even making a run at what you really want to do in life.”

Stick Figure’s own KBong was initially supposed to be featured on the track after jamming with the group at an after-party. The group ultimately decided to keep the song in-house but laid the ground-work for what could be a future connection and collaboration with the Stick Figure guys. “Even talking with KBong about being featured was something I never thought could happen when this song was coming together. We filmed an acoustic version of this song with Sugarshack, and that’s where it was really brought to life. It caught on fast… Its one of our favorite songs to play live and we love seeing the crowd sing the lyrics back to us. That is special.”

You can stream The Ries Brothers new album, The View From The Outside, on all the platforms or own their new album on iTunes by clicking HERE!

Watch: The Ries Brothers – “Echoing Dream” (Live: Sugarshack Sessions)



The Ries Brothers Background:

The Ries Brothers (pronounced ”Rees”), a duo from Tampa Bay, FL, blend rock, blues, funk, and reggae into a soulful-sophisticated sound. They are comprised of Charlie (lead vocals, drums and keyboard bass) and Kevin (lead guitar and backing vocals), and were tapped at a young age as an up-and-coming artist. In 2013 at the ages of 17 and 14 respectively, the dynamic duo was hand-picked along with 25 other young artists to be featured in the Los Angeles Grammy Museum’s exclusive Music Revolution Project. Since then, they’ve already supported several Billboard artists on tour, including a 10-city run with CHICAGO and a performance at the acclaimed Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.

The duo has long-cited that their sound is derived from many artists, but have mentioned The Beatles is what changed the game for them. The band discussed that on a family vacation to Las Vegas at a younger age found them noticing a Beatles Cirque du Soleil billboard – this led to their folks grabbing them a copy of The Beatles’ Love album at a young age and from there Charlie and Kevin mentioned that “they were hooked” and sparked their love for creating and writing music.

Related Links:
The Ries Brothers Website
The Ries Brothers Facebook
The Ries Brothers Twitter

Huge thanks again to The Ries Brothers for allowing us to share new song “Echoing Dream” to post up for FREE download. Free music is a privilege that we’re grateful for and we appreciate the work these artists do! Please feel free to download this song for FREE and spread the awareness to your friends!
Enjoy the FREE track on the homepage!

Article By: Mike Patti

Watch: The Ries Brothers – “No Place I’d Rather Be” (ft. Ted Bowne of Passafire)

This entry was posted on Sunday, December 3rd, 2017 at 6:48 pm and is filed under Daily News, Stick Figure.
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Common Kings Drop New Single Amid Grammy Nomination

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Southern, CA’s Common Kings is currently on a tour with Matisyahu where they released a collaborative single aptly titled after their tour with “Broken Crowns.” Now, they just received exciting news that their debut album Lost In Paradise would be 1 of 5 albums nominated by The Grammy’s for Best Reggae Album. If that’s not enough, today they drop a new single titled “Today’s A New Day.”

Common Kings New Single “Today’s A New Day”:

Common Kings Live
The song, the group tells The Pier, was completed via emails WeTransfer’s with their brothers Wrek and Bernz of!MayDay¡ who were on tour at the time. As for the song, the ‘Kings explain “With all the negativity and crazy shit happening, we wanted to write something positive. ‘Today’s A New Day’ was inspired in part by the title of our tour with Matisyahu and also about not holding on to yesterday, no matter how good or bad it was. Today is a new day to let go and be better than you were yesterday!”

[Related: Matisyahu Common Kings’ New Single “Broken Crowns”]

The song is officially available to stream or purchase, today and will soon be accompanied by a music video to which the group shares: “The crazy part is when we went to shoot the video for this song, our touring schedules aligned so that we were in the same city and had the same days off — That was pretty dope!”

The timing for a new single releasing the week of your Grammy nomination is also pretty good timing — You can stream it or own it via iTunes by clicking HERE!

Common Kings Nominated for a Grammy!:

When all of the nominees for the 2018 Grammy Awards were announced, Common Kings found themselves in the company of Damian Marley, Chronixx, Morgan Heritage and J Boog for Best Reggae Album. A humbled group tells The Pier: “It’s crazy to think that 6 years ago when we started this journey it was just a dream and a part of our ‘what if’ conversations amongst ourselves… Now we’re here representing our people along side our brother, J Boog — God is good. man!”

As you can imagine, it’s one thing to get the news that your album might be considered, it’s another to actually get that phone-call confirming your nomination. Here’s what the group tells The Pier: “We were in our hotel rooms on a down day in Baker City, Oregon. Our 23658437_10155947854448118_3055565035622327142_nsister and Tour Manager, Stef called us at 5:30am and was crying and screaming, yelling, telling us that we gotten it! We called our wives and families and woke them all up to let them know. Then we called our leader and manager Tautua and started screaming all over again, practically in tears, jumping around our hotel room! It was an epic moment that we are still trippin out on.”

[Related: 2018 Grammy Nominees For Best Reggae Album]

The 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards will take place Sunday, January 28, 2018 and air on CBS from 7:30–11 p.m. ET. Common Kings have a show the day before in New Zealand so there’s a sliver of a chance they may be able to make the event. When we asked if there’s one song they hope the world takes away from their album, they replied: “We actually have two songs! ‘Lost In Paradise’ because everybody needs a vacation at some point in time and ‘Always Beside You’ because it’s a reminder that no matter who we are or what our achievements in life may be, we see ourselves as equals in this world, always standing beside you.”

We’ll find out January 28th if their only full-length album takes home The Grammy for Best Reggae Album. In the meantime, you can find Common Kings on tour by clicking HERE!

Related Links:
Common Kings Website
Common Kings Facebook

Article by: Mike Patti
Photo by: David Norris

Watch: Common Kings – “Mary Wanna”

Listen: Common Kings Matisyahu – “Broken Crowns”

This entry was posted on Friday, December 1st, 2017 at 12:15 am and is filed under Daily News.
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Video: J Boog – “Good Cry” (ft. Chaka Demus)

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For the second year in a row, J Boog has received a Grammy Nomination for Best Reggae Album with his 11/18/2016 release of Wash House Ting. The album is 14 tracks and includes guest appearances by Gramps Morgan, Buju Banton, Fiji, Chaka Demus and more. Here is the music video for “Good Cry” that was also on J Boog’s Rose Petals EP that was also up for Best Reggae Album last year. The 60th Annual Grammy’s will be held on Sunday, January 28, 2018 on CBS from 7:30–11 p.m. ET. To read more about the Grammy’s the Best Reggae Album nominees, click HERE! You can stream J Boog’s Wash House Ting or own it via iTunes by clicking HERE! Enjoy the song and video…

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 30th, 2017 at 6:11 pm and is filed under Daily News.
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Reggae Rise Up Florida 2018 Lineup Revealed

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Tis the season for Thanksgiving hangovers and food comas, but as the holidays approach that also means music festival season is right around the corner and a plethora of lineups will soon be revealed. Perhaps none more appealing than the 2018 installment of Reggae Rise Up Florida featuring a headliner trio of Rebelution, Damian “JR GONG” Marley and SOJA.

Now entering its 8th year, Reggae Rise Up will once again be returning to the lovely Vinoy Park in St. Petersburg, Florida from March 16-18. For those who aren’t aware, Reggae Rise Up has established itself as one of the leading reggae music festivals that fans can indulge in and enjoy on a yearly basis, in addition to gaining attention and notoriety across all music festivals in general. They’re known for hosting year-round events as well as Festivals taking place in both Floriday and Utah. Further, the festival historically has been a two-day feature, but with the momentum and positive reviews in previous years the Reggae Rise Up Team has been able to expand to three days. In addition to the top-notch headliners, the lineup features an epic supporting cast as well:

Reggae Rise Up Florida 2018 Full Line-Up:

FRIDAY, MARCH 16Daily-Lineup-Banner
Tribal Seeds
Jesse Royal
Easy Star All-Stars
Nattali Rize
Summer Survivors

Damian “JR GONG” Marley
J Boog
Mike Love
Iya Terra
Jungle Man Sam
Badda Skat

Nahko Medicine For The People
Collie Buddz
The Expendables
Raging Fyah
New Kingston
Kash’d Out

Vinoy Park will host plenty of merchandise booths for fans and attendees to enjoy in their “vendor village” as well plenty of food truck and additional options to grab some grub. Festival-goers will have plenty of chances to quench their thirst, as RRU has noted that there will be more beer options scattered throughout the festival grounds this year than they’ve previously supported – there will also be full bars with liquor.

Aside from a bit of an earlier start on Saturday with the expanded lineup, gates will open around 1pm each day and close up at 10pm. As was the case in previous years, there is unfortunately no camping allowed at Vinoy Park due to city code stipulations, however there are plenty of hotel options available and attendees can check out all information and deals on the official website listed below.

Three days of epic music, good eats and drinks, sun (or sunburn) and memories that will last a lifetime. What’s not to love!? Grab your buddies and your tickets today by clicking HERE!

Related Links:
Reggae Rise Up Website
Reggae Rise Up Facebook

Article By: Brian Glaser

Watch: Reggae Rise Up Florida 2017 – Official Aftermovie

Watch: Reggae Rise Up Utah 2017 – Official Aftermovie

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 30th, 2017 at 12:37 am and is filed under Daily News.
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2018 Grammy Nominees For Best Reggae Album

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On Sunday, January 28, 2018 on CBS from 7:30–11 p.m. ET, the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards will take place. While all of the nominees for the various categories have been announced, we of course wanted to spotlight the 5 nominees for Best Reggae Album. Lets take a look as we congratulate nominees Common Kings, J Boog, Morgan Heritage, Chronixx and Damian Jr Gong Marley!

The eligibility requirements for the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards include albums that were released between Oct. 1, 2016, and Sept. 30, 2017. Recordings must be commercially released in general distribution in the United States, i.e. sales by label to a branch or recognized independent distributor, via the internet or mail order/retail sales for a nationally marketed product. Recordings must be available for sale from any date within the eligibility period through at least the date of the current year’s voting deadline.
The 2018 Grammy Nominees for Best Reggae Album:
Damian Jr Gong MarleyStony Hill (Released: 7/21/2017)
Morgan HeritageAvrakedabra (Released: 5/19/2017)
ChronixxChronology (Released (Released: 6/30/2017)
Common KingsLost In Paradise (Released: 2/3/2017)
J BoogWash House Ting (Released: 11/18/2016)

Something tells me that if a Marley is a nominee, then a Marley will likely take home the Grammy. That doesn’t mean that Damian’s Stony Hill isn’t a worthy nomination — JR Gong has won the category twice, in 2002 and 2006, and Stony Hill is a monster of an album at 18 tracks with his brother, Stephen, guesting on 3 of the songs. Morgan Heritage won their first Grammy in 2016 with Strictly Roots and they return as nominees for Avrakedabra that also features both Ziggy Stephen Marley.

The rest of the 2018 Nominees would be first time winners. J Boog was nominated last year for his Rose Petals EP from a March 2016 release and is up again with a full length record in Wash House Ting, a record that actually features Gramps Morgan of Morgan Heritage. This is the first time southern, CA’s Common Kings have been nominated and with a debut album; Lost In Paradise. The wild-card here is Jamaica’s Chronixx who may have just enough momentum to possibly beat out a Marley with his debut record, Chronology.

Ultimately, the winner doesn’t matter, but the discussion and notoriety is what counts. We hope people continue to talk about these albums and through these albums we hope people continue to discover the vast universe that is the reggae-rock community of artists that these nominees are known for collaborating and performing with. This genre continues to be building momentum that is getting more notoriety with the impact its having on the music industry with its culture and quality.

As Kevin Lyman, founder of the Vans Warped Tour, best put it on his Twitter (@KevinLyman): “Of course congratulations to the @GRAMMYAwards nominations, but I wish to recognize the 100’s of bands traveling around the country playing their hearts out each night who hope to make enough gas money to get to the next town!”

— We salute all of you artists and bands out there to another year of commitment to your passion.

Watch: Damian Marley – “Medicataion” (ft. Stephen Marley)

The GRAMMY’s Complete History of Best Reggae Album Winners:
2018: ?
2017: Ziggy Marley – Ziggy Marley
2016: Morgan Heritage – Strictly Roots
2015: Ziggy Marley – Fly Rasta
2014: Ziggy Marley – In Concert
2013: Jimmy Cliff – Rebirth
2012: Stephen Marley – Revelation Pt. 1 – The Root of Life
2011: Buju Banton – Before the Dawn
2010: Stephen Marley – Mind Control Acoustic
2009: Burning Spear – Jah Is Real
2008: Stephen Marley – Mind Control
2007: Ziggy Marley – Love Is My Religion
2006: Damian Marley – Welcome to Jamrock
2005: Toots the Maytals – True Love
2004: Sean Paul – Dutty Rock
2003: Lee Perry – Jamaican E.T.
2002: Damian Marley – Halfway Tree
2001: Beenie Man – Art and Life
2000: Burning Spear – Calling Rastafari
1999: Sly and Robbie – Friends
1998: Ziggy Marley The Melody Makers – Fallen Is Babylon
1997: Bunny Wailer – Hall of Fame: A Tribute to Bob Marley’s 50th Anniversary
1996: Shaggy – Boombastic
1995: Bunny Wailer – Crucial! Roots Classics
1994: Inner Circle – Bad Boys
1993: Shabba Ranks – X-tra Naked
1992: Shabba Ranks – As Raw As Ever
1991: Bunny Wailer – Time Will Tell: A Tribute to Bob Marley
1990: Ziggy Marley The Melody Makers – One Bright Day
1989: Ziggy Marley The Melody Makers – Conscious Party
1988: Peter Tosh – No Nuclear War
1987: Steel Pulse – Babylon the Bandit
1986: Jimmy Cliff – Cliff Hanger
1985: Black Uhuru – Anthem

Watch: Common Kings – “Mary Wanna”

Related Links:
Official Grammys Website
Grammys Facebook
Damian JR Gong Marley Website
Chronixx Website
Common Kings Website
J Boog Website
Morgan Heritage Website

Article by: Mike Patti

Watch: Chronixx – “Likes”

Watch: J Boog – “Good Cry” (ft. Chaka Demus)

Watch: Morgan Heritage – “Reggae Night” (ft. DreZion)

This entry was posted on Wednesday, November 29th, 2017 at 12:05 pm and is filed under Daily News.
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The History & Return of Long Beach Dub Allstars

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Who Exactly Are The Long Beach Dub Allstars?

The Sublime family tree is one with many branches, but if we consider Sublime the root, then Long Beach Dub Allstars would be the trunk of this unique reggae-rock genre. They started in 1997 as a way for this special community of artists to come together around the untimely passing of their brother in Sublime front-man Brad Nowell who passed away in May of 1996. The group was created by surviving Sublime members; drummer Bud Gaugh, bassist Eric Wilson, along with producer and sound-engineer Miguel Happoldt and DJ/percussionist Marshall Goodman. The group was rounded out with RightBackvocals provided by new lead-guitarist Ras-1 and Opie Ortiz, who in addition to designing all of the Sublime material, also designed all of the L.B.D.A. art. Then there was the late Ikey Owens on keys who sat opposite of Jack Maness on keys (and occasionally played guitar) along with Tim Wu on sax/flute.

“After Brad had passed we were all devastated,” Opie tells The Pier. “Our arms were open for all the homies and we were all just hanging out and jamming to help with the remorse. That was the only way Bud Eric could deal, was to keep playing. I don’t know if it was just therapy for them or all of us, but we all came together and we kind of figured it out.”

Following their first live performance in January of 1997, a buzz broke out with demand for more shows. So what started out as a tribute performance to support Brad’s son, Jakob, turned into a band of Brad’s fellow brothers and musicians that would continue to write, perform and further this new genre of music. When they would perform live, they would play a mix of Sublime songs and reggae covers around a collection of original material using that unique ingredient of Reggae, Ska, Dub, Hip Hop, Punk with shades of Pop. They always paid tribute to Brad Nowell during songs, would let the crowd sing “Santeria” and were known to play as a backing band for such artists as Half Pint, Barrington Levy and Born Jamericans. Back then, L.B.D.A. was the only group of its kind furthering the Reggae-Rock sound with influence. Slightly Stoopid was still establishing their following and when it came to live shows or tours, it was Slightly Stoopid who would open up for L.B.D.A.

“We were just trying to get back on track, trying to use Opie and Ras’s strength and diminish whatever little weaknesses there was,” Miguel tells The Pier.

Like Sublime, ‘Dub Allstars toured the nation on the Vans Warped Tour, but unlike Sublime, the ‘Dubs were able to continue touring the world for several years. Long Beach Dub Allstars benefited from the buzz of Sublime’s 1996 break-out self-titled album and hit single “What I Got.” Fans rushed to their show and looked to them for a continuation of a sound that didn’t have much of a platform without them. As Miguel explains of the group back then: “Long Beach Dub Allstars had one show that wasn’t sold out in its entire existence. And the smallest venue we ever played held about a thousand people.”

For being such a big band with so many members, Miguel explained a bit of the method to the madness: “We didn’t all play at the same time. It was very much arranged. Occasionally we’d all play at the same time, at the end of the song with the crescendo building, but the next song would start and it’d be a 3 piece with Ras-1, Bud Eric and that’s it. You give them a little, you take a little, and you bring it in and drop it out. That’s what we did.”

From 1997-2002, the ‘Dub Allstars put out an EP of sorts titled Long Beach Dub Allstars Friends (1998) followed by 2 full-length WotWalbums, Right Back (1999) and Wonders of the World (2001). They collaborated with a slew of guest vocalists that included: Will.I.Am of Black Eyed Peas, Chali2na of Jurassic 5, Barrington Levy, Half Pint, Tippa Irie, H.R., Joe Strummer, Born Jamericans, and more! They reached radio play with spins on hit singles “Trailer Ras” (1999) and “Sunny Hours” (2001) while being known for fan favorites, “Rosarito,” “My Own Life,” and “Listen To DJ’s.”

A lot of the artists that Sublime were known for sampling or covering, Long Beach Dub Allstars actually got to perform and/or record with. Artists like Barringon Levy — Sublime put out “Saw Red,” that was a cover of Levy’s “She’s Mine.” Then ‘Dub Allstars record an acoustic version of “Saw Red” with Levy singing on it to close out their debut record. Half Pint, which Sublime used as inspiration with “What I Got” from Pint’s song “Loving,” was also on L.B.D.A.’s debut record with the song “Pass It On.”. Miguel tells The Pier: “For me personally, I cant speak for anybody else, but I didn’t really care about anything except getting to know Half Pint and meeting Barrington and working with Tippa Irie. Brad would have killed for that! To know Half Pint he would have killed a man, do you know what I’m trying to say?”

A lot of the reggae-rock, collaborative formula that was used in the success of Sublime Long Beach Dub Allstars was also seen passed on to Slightly Stoopid with Miguel Happoldt and Marshall Goodman’s involvement with production. Slightly Stoopid’s Everything You Need (2003) and Closer To The Sun (2005) records felt like natural progressions to the Sublime Long Beach Dub Allstars sound as Stoopid would also collaborate with a lot of the same artists that ‘Dub Allstars put back on the radar with the commercial attention they were receiving on the heels of Sublimes success.

Watch: Long Beach Dub Allstars – “Trailer Ras”

So Why Did Long Beach Dub Allstars Break-up?

Miguel, in a previous interview, tells The Pier: “People started getting into drugs and fucked everything up. We could have used more structure. We made a lot of good music, played a lot of good shows; we put a lot of reggae artists back on the radar.”

And while drug use was certainly a factor in the bands demise, they were struck a significant blow when their highly anticipated sophomore record, Wonders of the World, was released on 9/11/2001. Instead of waking up to the excitement of a new record selling, they woke up with the rest of world to see foreign terrorism on U.S. soil.
“Most of our shows people came out, but there was that fear throughout America, and it restricted a lot of the shows,” Marshall Goodman tells The Pier. “The turnout was less than it would have been otherwise. The record sales and all of that, yes, 9/11 majorly affected the band.”

Bud Gaugh quit first, but the Dub’s continued to play with Goodman replacing Gaugh on drums, much like he did during Sublime’s recording of their first album, 40oz to Freedom. After the group split in 2002, various members pursued miscellaneous side-projects with each-other over the years that saw little to mild success. Miguel continued to produce Slightly Stoopid in addition to staying busy with the various Sublime re-releases from over the years. Marshall Goodman would continue to produce as well, working with Slightly Stoopid to Rebelution, Tomorrows Bad Seeds as well as Sublime with Rome. In 2009, Eric Wilson and Bud Gaugh reunited with new singer Rome Ramirez to form Sublime with Rome. Bud Gaugh would leave SwR in 2011, but it’s where Eric Wilson continues to write and perform on bass, today.

Watch: Long Beach Dub Allstars – “Sunny Hours” (ft. Will.I.Am of Black Eyed Peas)

The Return of Long Beach Dub Allstars:

In 2012, Opie, Miguel and Marshall started to resurface, performing shows under the acronym: L.B.D.A. This resurfacing was without Bud, Eric or Ras-1. They had a new bass player along with other adjustments to the arrangement of the original line-up. This same line-up would perform the Skunk Records 25th Anniversary shows in 2014 that included a live performance at California Roots Festival to which Marshall described back then as the first step toward reuniting much of this line-up to move forward with new records: “That was actually a breath of fresh air in my opinion. It was a chance to take this legacy, this ‘what could have been’ and make it happen.”

They took long-time fans by surprise when they announced a series of shows in 2017, with one in Florida, boasting their full-name: Long Beach Dub Allstars. The group confirmed that they were in fact back and motivated to play music with each-other again, inspired by the tragic deaths of brothers Ikey Aaron Owens. They have had a run of shows in 2017 with gigs throughout CA and one-offs in Florida and Nevada. They’ve already been confirmed for a couple of gigs in San Francisco and Sacramento, CA for early 2018 DavidNorrisLBDARoxy2-17-17 (24)as well as as a 4/19/17 show at Red Rocks in Morrison, CO with 311, Method Man Redman, Collie Buddz and Chali2na of Jurassic 5.

While the name Long Beach Dub Allstars is back, the same line-up is not. Bud Gaugh is not in the band as Marshall Goodman is now the drummer, which means no live DJ. Eric Wilson is still in Sublime with Rome, and has been replaced by another musical all-star in former Suburban Rhythm bassist Ed Kampwirth. Tim Wu returns with his sax flute as does Jack Maness on keys/vocals. Sitting opposite of Jack is another new addition and musical all-star in The Aggrolites keyboardist organist, Roger Rivas.

Ras-1, who was a big part of the original groups songwriting, is no longer active in the band. He has been replaced on guitar and vocals by Miguel Happoldt, although the group doesn’t perform much of Ras-1’s previous songs live — So if you were a big fan of songs like “Trailer Ras,” “It Ain’t Easy,” “Rosarito,” or even “Sunny Hours,” you’ll be disappointed in hearing those songs no longer being performed. Opie Ortiz, however, returns as the groups lead vocalist, performing the songs he originally sang in addition to newer material the group is slowly introducing. Opie was known for singing previous fan favorites such as “My Own Life,” “Listen To DJs,” “Lonely End,” “Luke,” and more.

While L.B.D.A. has returned with an evolving line-up, the group tells The Pier that any of the original members are welcome to join them at any time on stage as they hope for a healthy return from Ras-1. Bud Gaugh remains a wild-card on whether or not there’s any interest to rejoin in any capacity and Eric Wilson seems content performing with Sublime with Rome.

So What About New Music?

On October 2nd, 2017 Long Beach Dub Allstars released new music for the first time in 16 years with 2 new singles, “Holding Out” and “Steady Customer” as Marshall tells The Pier: “Roger wrote the body and riffs for ‘Steady Customer’ and the rest of us did our parts for the recording. I’m really looking forward to having Roger involved in this next batch of song writing. I’m certain we are going to come up with some exciting new angles to deliver our sound. ‘Holding Out’ is a standard that Miguel dug up and we gave it our interpretation.”

The group tells The Pier that as long as the music is well received and promoters continue to book them, then we can continue to look forward to new music and live performances. They plan to follow up these 2 new singles with more music as Marshall hints: “We’ve got lots of ideas for re-introducing the band’s catalogue and unreleased material.”
Today’s generation of reggae-rock fans may not fully understand how critical this group was to the reggae-rock genre following Sublime’s conclusion in 1996. They played at a time when social media was non-existent. Live-videos of their early performances are mostly of grainy VHS quality, while most live-photos shot by fans were with throw-away cameras. There was no Youtube, Facebook, and this was before Myspace or even iTunes. They were the torch bearers of a genre that Sublime introduced and the original ‘Dub Allstars lineup included most of the players who were involved in cultivating that Reggae-Rock sound with Brad Nowell. Seeing them reunite and perform new music after a 15 year absence is exciting. To see what these musical professors and legends from Long Beach engineer together in the studio will be even more thrilling. They have a new website, new merchandise and the group tells The Pier they’re keen on exploring vinyl releases with Marshall saying: “Vinyl is the best source for listening to recorded media… Putting a piece of vinyl on a turntable, placing the needle on the vinyl, adjusting the sound source, and allowing this finite act to take its course will revive the type of listeners that disappeared when MP3s, earbuds, and device screens took over.”

“We have been blessed to have the majority of our songs leave a positive impact on listeners and establish a firm fan base,” says Marshall. “I think they just expect more of what we’ve always done, which is to create music that is authentic and genuine to our experiences and perspectives.

It’s been 15 years since I’ve been able to proudly proclaim The Return of Long Beach Dub Allstars. Even when the group started to resurface in 2012, playing sparingly as L.B.D.A., the momentum didn’t feel as it does now that it appears that these Wonders of the World are comfortable moving forward with new music around a modern-day evolving line-up.

Listen: Long Beach Dub Allstars – “Holdin’ Out” “Steady Customer”


Related Links:
Exclusive Sublime Blog
Long Beach Dub Allstars Website
Long Beach Dub Allstars Facebook
Long Beach Dub Allstars Upcoming Shows

Article By: Mike Patti
Live Photos By: David Norris

Watch: Havoc TV Interviews Long Beach Dub Allstars

This entry was posted on Monday, November 27th, 2017 at 9:19 pm and is filed under Special Features, Sublime, Topic Articles.
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New Zealand’s Tunes of I Release New EP ‘Wicked Ways’

Posted in Reggae Roots Music | Comments Off on New Zealand’s Tunes of I Release New EP ‘Wicked Ways’

Tunes of I, a psychedelic dub rock 7-piece out of Wellington, NZ, dropped their new EP Wicked Ways on November 17th, 2017. Ahead of the upcoming release, Tunes of I have put out two killer singles “Kiss the Sky” and “Running” as a preview of what’s to come. Recorded at Wellington’s Surgery Studios, Wicked Ways was produced by the so-called doctor, Lee Prebble.
Coming out of the reggae-rich country of New Zealand, the hype around Tunes of I has been steadily increasing during their 6 years together as a band. Tunes of I spent the last 18 months touring in support of their debut album Restless, which features blazers like the title track “Restless” and “Solar Rays.” In 2012, Tunes of I was named Emerging Artist of the Year at New Zealand’s Waiata Maori Music Awards. The group has played support for legendary acts like UB40 and The Wailers, as well as the enormously popular Australian, psychedelic reggae rock bands Sticky Fingers and Ocean Alley. Tunes of I is formed by Conway Jeune (vocals/guitar), Jules Blewman (guitar), Makura Tomoana (bass), Luther Hunt (drums), Michael Costeloe (trumpet), Bryn van Vliet (saxophone), Kaito Walley (trombone).

Tunes of I bring a fresh blend of dub, soul, and psychedelic reggae to the table. You’ll hear some influence from fellow Wellington natives Fat Freddy’s Drop on songs like “Restless” and “Solar Rays,” and then on their recent single “Kiss the Sky” there are glimpses of Sticky Fingers-esque lyrics, but the music is always captivating and original. 

Be sure to give the EP Wicked Ways a listen and find them on digital platforms like Spotify and Apple Music.Currently, Tunes of I only has performances scheduled in New Zealand, but hopefully the boys will make it out Stateside soon enough.

Related Links: 
Tunes of I Official Website
Tunes of I Facebook
Wicked Ways Purchase Link

Article By: Brian Winters

Wicked Ways EP – ‘Wicked Ways’ Teaser

Tunes of I – “Solar Rays” (Live)

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 26th, 2017 at 8:28 pm and is filed under Daily News.
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Interview: Jaya The Cat

Posted in Reggae Roots Music | Comments Off on Interview: Jaya The Cat


Jaya The Cat is a 4-piece punk-rock reggae group based out of Amsterdam, and originally formed in Boston, MA. Just ahead of the release of the band’s 5th full-length studio album A Good Day For The Damned, we connected with Jaya The Cat frontman Geoff Lagadec (vocals/rhythm guitar). Geoff opened up about the creation of the new album, the European reggae scene, and debates whether he’d rather party with his late idol Joe Strummer or rappers Drake and Lil Jon.

Lagadec is joined by Karl Smith (lead guitar/vocals), Jan Jaap “Jay” Onverwagt (bass/vocals), and David “The Germ” Germain (drums). After two members of an earlier incarnation of Jaya The Cat left the band, Lagadec simply decided to move himself and the band to Amsterdam following a European tour. Since the relocation, the group has built up a strong base of punk and reggae fans alike throughout Europe. Self described as “drunk reggae,” Jaya The Cat produce a raucous live show each night that they take to the stage.

Sipping on a glass (or two) of red wine from his home in Amsterdam, Geoff gave us some insight about his adopted city, as well as his appreciation for both the German reggae and party scenes. Geoff also discusses the rise of former label mates The Skints. Finally, we find out what’s holding Jaya The Cat from returning stateside for a few tour dates in the homeland.

Interview: Jaya The Cat

Your 5th studio album A Good Day For The Damned is about to drop, how long start to finish was the creation process?
Geoff: Maybe 4 years. That sounds dramatic, but our last album was about 5 years ago, and then I sorta started thinking maybe I should start a new album, like you do. But I’m lazy. So a song comes out here and there, you know, in between touring, but at some point we said to ourselves, “Shit it’s been a while.” 

I had about 30 songs written, and we just picked a few and went into the studio.

Have you guys gotten to play any of the songs live off the new album? and if so, which ones have gotten the best reception from crowds so far?JayaTheCat-A-Good-Day-For-The-Damned
Geoff: We’ve been doing “Amsterdam” live for almost 2 years now, actually. That was one of the first ones I wrote. For the rest, we just did two dates last weekend, and now we’re trying to integrate new shit into the set. So we did 5 new songs or so. But it’s hard. The first leg of this tour starts next Friday, so this whole week we’re just gonna go in and practice em’ and hopefully get em’ good. You never know how people are gonna respond, it’s surprising. So we’ll see!

Speaking of the track “Amsterdam,” it seems sort of like a love/hate relationship with your adopted city. Do you feel like there are other cities in Europe that are actually better party cities?
Geoff: Definitely, man. That’s the whole point of the song. Amsterdam’s got this reputation as this hedonistic fuckin’ playground. I’m in the center of the Red Light right now, that’s where I live. It’s really not what the Dutch want, and it’s not what this city is about actually. It’s more like a museum of what it used to be. They’re really trying to make it into a shopping district for high-end tourists now.

And you know it’s whatever, fuck it right? It’s fine. I guess the whole point is that if you go to Hamburg or Berlin, for your money you’re gonna get..You can stay up all fuckin’ night. You can go to a sex club in Berlin and stay there for a week, you know what I mean? The bars on my block, which is the Red Light, they close at 1 on weekdays. And you can’t sell beer at a shop past 10pm.

But it’s not like I hate it! The whole point of the song is actually about how beautiful of a city Amsterdam is. It’s lovely, with all the canals and shit like that. I was coming home one night, pissed off that there were no bars open, and I stood outside the canal outside my house, and I was like “you know, this is fuckin’ beautiful man!” I love this city. So it’s not what you’d expect, but I love it.

If you had the chance to party with any musician dead or alive for one night, who would you choose to go out with?
Geoff: Oh my god, I don’t know. I don’t like to meet people that I like, you know what I’m saying? I had a chance to meet Joe Strummer svn17_jtc_m3_86once, and I didn’t because The Clash are my favorite band ever. From all accounts he was a lovely person, but if he had been at all weird it would have ruined it for me.

It would have to be someone that..maybe an over the top rap artists or something. I’d go out with Drake! I’d do cocaine with Drake, how about that! Only because I wouldn’t care. If he was a dick it would be whatever. I’d go out with Lil Jon. Only because they seem like they’d be fun, and if they fuckin’ sucked I wouldn’t go home and say, “Shit man! that just ruined ‘Hot Line Bling’ for me.”

So you mentioned The Clash obviously. Is there anyone else that was a major influence on the sound you guys make, or that you were listening to growing up? 
Geoff: The Pogues. Yeah, writing wise Shane MacGowan. Maybe that’s a better answer to that question. I would actually go out with him. Because I know he’d be a dick. I still wouldn’t turn down a night with Lil Jon or Drake, but Shane MacGowan is probably a more appropriate answer. I think it would just be interesting, he’s a great writer.

Touring is usually pretty taxing on bands. Even ones that don’t seem to keep the party going post-performance. What do you do to relax once the tour is over, or do you just keep it going?
Geoff: I don’t know, I travel a lot and I’m kinda restless. I’ve been over to Vienna to write, lately it’s been Hamburg, and Sofia in Bulgaria I really like. But just everywhere. I go to the UK a lot too. We don’t party as much as we used to which is good.

I actually quit drugs recently, which is weird.

How’s that going so far?
Geoff: I got bored, you know? I knew exactly what was going to happen now, so I was like fuck it. I basically just realized it wasn’t leading me anywhere. The negatives were outweighing the positives, and I was just like, “I don’t need that.” It’s too expensive to fuck up your life. I’ll fuck it up for cheap, ha!

The new album is releasing via Bomber Records, I know The Skints used to be with them as well. Have you two bands ever crossed paths?
Geoff: We’re really good friends with them, yeah. We’ve toured with them a bunch, and yeah, they’re part of our musical family. Great kids, and an absolutely fuckin’ blinding band. They’re that good, and you wish them the best because they started out opening for us, and then it flipped over and we were opening up for them in the UK.

They really work for it. Never seen a band that works as hard, especially Josh, he’s so focused. We’re lazy, ha!

Any other bands in Europe that you’ve toured with or enjoy listening to that the Americans back home are missing out on?
svn17_jtc_loveGeoff: There’s a band from Wales called Captain Accident The Disasters. He’s sort of roots, but really light. Amazing talent. There’s also a band from Hamburg called Le Fly. They worked with our manager, and they did a track with a bunch of German hip-hop and reggae artists, and I did some part of it. They were really nice.

But for reggae, isn’t it all about Germany, man. Seeed and Patrice and stuff like that.

Oh yeah, Seeed is legendary! Peter Fox is a genius.
Geoff: That’s all stuff that I’m not sure people are familiar with back home, right? When I first heard that shit I was like what?! The Germans have it locked down reggae wise. Gentleman, what the fuck! Have you seen him live? Amazing, he just has a show. You see some bands with the keyboard player doing the horns, stuff like that. They have one guy and then three kids they don’t have to pay much. And then you see Gentleman and he’s got 20 fuckin’ people on stage. He brought out a different guest for each song when I saw him in Cologne.

Sounds like things are going well in Europe, but do you have any plans to come back to the States and do a tour?
Geoff: It’s been a wicked long time, man. It’s such a pain. I would like to though. To be honest, we do alright on the East Coast and people seem to know us now, but we’d have to almost start up again over there, you know. Me and the drummer are American, but the rest of the band are either English or Dutch. So we’d have to deal with visas. Then suddenly you’re just in a goddamn van playing for next to nothing.

The way that we would go there is, say we get some breakthrough single, but I don’t think we’re that kind of band. Or if we got an offer to support. That’s how The Skints did it, they poured their own money into it. They went and opened for people and kept doing it. But I don’t know if I give a fuck. And hell, it’s a nightmare back there right now, you know? I feel sorry for everyone back there.

It’s sad, it’s not entertaining for my friends that are minorities, or poor, or gay, or anything. But sometimes in the morning I just google “Trump” to see what the fuck he did. You couldn’t make that shit up. It’s not a reason not to go, I mean it is our country, I still love it, and it’s beautiful. I would love to do a West Coast tour. If we put the effort in maybe we could do okay.

Geoff, thanks for taking some time to catch up with The Pier. Best of luck with the new album A Good Day For The Damned! The album officially drops Nov. 17th via Bomber Music. You’ll be able to stream it on Spotify or own it via iTunes by clicking HERE!


Watch: Jaya The Cat – Amsterdam (Official Video)

Related Links:
Jaya The Cat Website
Jaya The Cat Facebook

Interview by: Brian Winters

Watch: Jaya The Cat – Here Comes The Drums (Official Video)

This entry was posted on Tuesday, November 21st, 2017 at 3:40 pm and is filed under Exclusive Interviews, Special Features.
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MP3 Leak of the Week: Dela & The Aggrolites

Posted in Reggae Roots Music | Comments Off on MP3 Leak of the Week: Dela & The Aggrolites

Daniel “DELA” Delacruz, a saxophonist, composer, arranger, and producer, is also Slightly Stoopid’s horn section leader and a key contributor to their last four studio efforts. He’s put that skill to a debut record of his own that he co-produced with Karl Denson titled Opening Night. The Aggrolites back the live music to his production along with a slew of guest appearances, including one with Kyle McDonald of Slightly Stoopid that we’re giving away FREE…

You can download Dela The Aggrolites new song “Who The Bruthas,” featuring Slightly Stoopid for FREE on our home page under the MP3 Leak of the Week on the right hand column! This Download will only be available until Saturday, Nov 25th, 2017.

Dela The Aggrolites – “Who The Bruthas” (ft. Slightly Stoopid) — Download HERE (on The Pier homepage)

Dela The Aggrolites “Who The Bruthas” Background:

On November 3rd, Dela The Aggrolites released Opening Night via Stoopid Records through Megaforce/Orchard. The album is 11 total tracks with guest appearances by The Aggrolites own frontman Jesse Wagner who sings on the albums second song “Sonrie, Armor.” Angelo Moore of Fishbone is on track 4’s “Atlantic And Smith” which was the albums first single with a cool music video that you can find below. Rebecca Jade can be heard belting out her vocals on two songs with track 7’s “Rejoice” and the albums final track, “This is Goodbye”.

In addition to co-producing the record, Karl Denson is featured on track 5’s “Way About Ya” which is a heady reggae track, heavy with the flute in the beginning before a melodic reply from Denson on sax, spending the rest of the song speaking with each-other, grooving for over five minutes — Easily one of the best tracks on the record next to the Chali2na of Jurassic 5‘s feature on “Loose Screws” and “Who The Bruthas” with Kyle of Stoopid.

With “Who The Bruthas”, DELA tells The Pier: “The original version was one of the first songs I ever wrote. It was strictly an instrumental and had no bridge originally. I kept it in the archives and when we began production of Opening Night, I thought it’d be a perfect time to dust it off. I came up with the idea for the bridge after watching The Godfather for about the millionth time. I just love that main theme and how it versatile it is.” DELA continues, telling The Pier: “As for the vocals, Kyle and I have worked on lots of music over the years and I love his flow. When I played the stuff we were working on he immediately gravitated towards Who the Bruthas. He definitely added some fire to the song. To match his energy we decided to modulate the song a couple of times to build even more energy.”

Much of the album is a musical ensemble of various instruments telling a story, speaking to each-other and what I like to think instruments do on their own in a room when no ones around. This is a long album coming in at just over an hour with a mix of jazz, blues, soul, hip hop, reggae — including that signature dirty reggae sound we know from The Aggrolites and Roger Rivas present on the keys/organ. The arrangements from top to bottom don’t make this feel like a long album and before you know it, you’re out of bourbon you’ve rolled 3 blunts. It hits you with a bite yet goes down smooth.

You can stream DELA The Aggrolites Opening Night or own it via iTunes by clicking HERE!



Dela The Aggrolites Background:

Boston born, San Diego resident Daniel “DELA” Delacruz is a saxophonist, composer, arranger, and producer. He starting touring with Moon Ska Satellite recording artist Johnny Too Bad and The Strikeouts from 1995-1997 while pursuing a degree in jazz performance from Berklee College of Music. After disbanding in 1997, DELA was accepted into the jazz program at William Paterson University, where he graduated with a BM in Jazz Studies in 2001. Towards the end of college, he began playing jazz with various groups and under his own name all over the New York/New Jersey area. In mid 2001, DELA joined the American roots reggae institution and Easy Star Records artists John Brown’s Body. He appeared on their 5th studio effort Pressure Points, where he aided in writing and arranging many of the horn parts on the album.

In early 2006, JBB was invited on tour with Southern California’s rising stars Slightly Stoopid. At the end of that tour DELA was asked to become a full time member of Slightly Stoopid, and now over an 11 year tenure, “DELA” has become Slightly Stoopid’s horn section leader, as well as a key writing/arranging contributor on their last four studio efforts. DELA has also spent time touring with Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, appearing on his Stoopid Records release New Ammo.

The Aggrolites are a Los Angeles based original Ska/Reggae/Funk ensemble who were originally signed to Epitaph records by Rancid’s Tim Armstrong and proved the strong backbone to the tracks on Opening Night.

Most notably, DELA has appeared on stage with: Snoop Dogg, Sly and Robbie, Cypress Hill, Ivan Neville, Jeff Coffin, Rashawn Ross, Collie Buddz, Don Carlos, Karl Denson, Ozomatli, G. Love and Special Sauce, Donavon Frankenreiter, Marlon Asher, Angelo Moore, and Chali 2na.

Related Links:
Dela The Aggrolites Website
Dela The Aggrolites Facebook
Exclusive Slightly Stoopid Blog

Huge thanks again to Dela The Aggrolites for allowing us to share new song “Who The Bruthas” featuring Slightly Stoopid to post up for FREE download. Free music is a privilege that we’re grateful for and we appreciate the work these artists do! Please feel free to download this song for FREE and spread the awareness to your friends!
Enjoy the FREE track on the homepage!

Article By: Mike Patti

Watch: Dela The Aggrolites – “Atlantic Smith” (ft. Angelo Moore of Fishbone

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 19th, 2017 at 12:12 am and is filed under Daily News, Slightly Stoopid.
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