Reggae messenger Luciano will join musician and activist Michael Franti, along with his band Spearhead; The Aggrolites; Warrior King; Kim Churchill; Nicky Bomba and Canada’s reggae soul princess Bonnie Casey will headline a benefit concert on Wednesday, April 20th 2011 at the Northern Hotel in Byron Bay, Australia to assist those affected by the devastating disasters that recently hit Japan, New Zealand and Queensland, Australia.
Event organisers in a press release said, “floods, earthquakes and tsunamis have taken a toll on millions of people recently and we are the lucky ones that get to help. It will be a night of celebration for life, acknowledging and helping those caught in the multi-regional disasters. The evening is an international collective of musicians from USA, Jamaica, Canada and Australia that care and will perform semi-acoustic sets closing with an all-star jam that will surely be of legendary proportions.”
Event headliner Michael Franti has been bringing our world exceptionally powerful, deeply felt music. His latest release, The Sound of Sunshine, marked the highest chart debut of Franti’s career on the Billboard Top 200 and continues to find success on the charts with singles “The Sound of Sunshine”, “Hey Hey Hey” and the latest release “I’ll Be Waiting”. Franti’s impressive series of recordings have vividly reflected his status as a musical citizen of the world as he continues to bring his unique sound and inspiring message to fans everywhere.
Franti has crossed all sorts of musical and physical boundaries in order to make music for everybody and speak out and serve those that need help most. In 2008 he teamed with reggae legends Sly & Robbie on the hit single “Say Hey (I Love You)” that featured reggae singer Cherine Anderson.
*LUCIANO, with the release of his landmark CD “Where There Is Life,” emerged as one of the most important reggae singers in decades and the greatest hope for roots reggae’s survival in the digital dancehall era. Since that much acclaimed release, Luciano’s music has been consistently praised for imparting sentiments of spiritual salvation, Rastafarian edification and African repatriation. In these troubled times, Luciano’s engaging baritone resonates like a divinely ordained instrument possessing the power to comfort and, seemingly, the informed biblical authority to warn of impending destruction. While many of his so called “conscious” contemporaries have faltered by recording songs that glorify wanton sex and random violence as a means of topping the charts, Luciano has held steadfast to enriching Rasta principles; these positive lyrical themes have justifiably earned him the title of The Messenger.
*BONNIE CASEY a young, Canadian based soul and reggae singer has garnered major attention with a stellar performances at the annual Jamaica Day Celebration in Toronto, Canada where she entertained thousands of screaming fans who cheered as she belted out a heartfelt rendition of the Jimmy Cliff classic “Many Rivers to Cross.” She again turned heads with a smashing performance of “Willow Tree” and “Tune In” at the November 20th 2010 tribute concert for the late Gregory Isaacs at The Ronnie Williams Centre in Jamaica. She recently inked a 5 year management contract with tour manger Copeland Forbes of Comar Productions. She is currently in Jamaica recording tracks with Sly & Robbie, Dean Fraser and Beres Hammond who are producing songs for her high anticipated debut album that is slated to hit stores this summer.
*THE AGGROLITES are more than a band they are a movement unto themselves. They carry a banner – one created with their own hands. This banner reads, “Dirty Reggae,” and represents their signature fusion of reggae, soul, grit and determination. With the release of their 5th full-length collection “Rugged Road” released as a series of vinyl and digital singles, as well as a compilation, this dirty reggae bunch has rolled from city to city, across the pond and up main street rallying the kids, the parents, the students, the cops, the bosses and the drifters. The people come, they relish in The Aggrolites, the dirty reggae and the joy that comes with it all. The liberating rhythms and catchy grooves demand a return trip.
*NICKY BOMBA has built a solid reputation in the music industry via many projects including conducting the 30 piece Melbourne Ska Orchestra to playing drums on John Butler’s award-winning “Sunrise over Sea” to being the Artistic Producer for the Multicultural Arts Victoria Visible project. After years of working with bands from Africa to the Middle East and honing his reggae, ska and mento expertise, Nicky has drawn on his musical journeys and philosophies to produce his first ever solo work, “Planet Juice.” This collection captures songs that have been sitting in the bag for years to new tunes – freshly squeezed. His new work sees him getting back to his roots; spending more time on the drum kit on top of a kaleidoscope of other instruments including the ukulele, marimba and guitar.
*WARRIOR KING’s international smash single “Virtuous Women” graced the airwaves internationally and become number one throughout many countries with its righteous lyrics. Since that auspicious beginning, Warrior King’s compositions have consistently charted not only in his native Jamaica, but throughout the entire Caribbean, as well as New York, London, Tokyo and beyond. His debut album “Virtuous Women” was released shortly thereafter, also featuring a handful of top charting singles including “Breadth of Fresh Air” and “Power to Chant,” while “Jah Is Always There” was a recent summer smash on Atlanta’s More Fire chart.
*KIM CHURCHILL picked up the guitar at the tender age of four. Then he trained classically for ten years. At 16, he started to find hiw own musical feet under the influences of not illicit substances, but Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Bowie, Marley and more recently Jack White. He’s now considered to be one of Australia’s most exciting young guitarists. With the release of his latest album, “Turns To Stone”, he still plans to record the 40-odd songs in his brain matter, as well as release three EPs and a second album by the end of 2011, the world hasn’t a clue.