Legends of Reggae UK Tour @ The Tramshed, Cardiff

“De baba men no like de dreadlocks man/De dreadlocks man no like de baba men, no?”

IF you’re going to name your tour Legends of Reggae it’s only fair they should perform in venues suitable for the billing.

Max Romeo

Cardiff’s best small venues have played host to some legendary reggae figures, especially in recent years, but a line up featuring Max Romeo, Eek A Mouse and Big Youth (not to mention the Mighty Diamonds whose appearance was cancelled at the last-minute) deserves a bigger stage. Continue reading

Romain Virgo @ Tramshed, Cardiff

“And just like a knight in shining armour/I used my charm just to calm her”

ROMAIN VIRGO made his name as the winner of Jamaica’s Digicel Rising Stars talent contest in 2007 and more than 10 years on is touring the UK to promote his Lovesick album.

The route from talent show winner to stardom is more established on his home island than in European pop music but Virgo is a natural inheritor of the tradition of smooth as silk, male reggae singers. An impressive catalogue of singles have establish a reputation as a slick but considerate heart-throb. As his hour and a half on stage, that includes at least 25 songs, demonstrates – again in the tradition of Jamaican singers – it’s also a catalogue deeper than three LPs, of which Lovesick is the latest. Continue reading

Mykal Rose @ The Globe, Cardiff

“Guess who’s coming to dinner, Natty Dreadlock”

MYKAL ROSE created history with his former Black Uhuru band mates when, in 1984, they won reggae’s first Grammy award for the album Anthem.

The legacy is the singer is often referred to with ‘Grammy’ inserted as a middle name and his current UK tour is billed as Sounds of Black Uhuru 1977-1985. Continue reading

Tarrus Riley @ 02 Academy, Bristol

“Hey DJ can you play that song?/Set the mood for me to hold a different energy”

BILLED as Tarrus Riley and the Blak Soil Band this show centred around the interplay between the rich-toned vocalist and band leader Dean Fraser.

Tarrus Riley

Tarrus Riley

The acclaimed saxophonist welcomed the headliner to the stage with a funky rendition which indicated for all Riley’s catalogue of love songs – and female admirers jammed into the 02 – there would be no letting up for the May Day Bank Holiday crowd.
Continue reading