Interview with Tanya Stephens during Jamaica Music Conference Summit in Italy

We met Tanya Stephens in Lecce after the first “Jamaica Music Conference” summit in Italy. The international recording Artist has retraced her career of over twenty years with us. She expressed her satisfaction on seeing a lot of new successful female singers. Tanya’s suggestions for the upcoming artists are to don’t be afraid to make music, to enjoy it because is a great job and they will have the opportunity to connect with a lot of souls around the Globe. Mrs. Stephens is currently planning to release a new album in the next few months.

Interviewer: Eugenia Conti Shooting: Joan Nanook Webley Editing: Drummstudio Special thanks: Jamaica Music Conference

Interview with Stonebwoy: “Here is someone who has incredible pride, but a very little ego. That’s the key.” (Rototom Sunsplash 2019)

Gege Vibes met the Ghanaian super-star Stonebwoy for a video interview in Rototom Sunsplash 2019, Spain, after his first performance on the Lion Stage of the Festival. The talented afro-pop, dancehall and reggae singer, winner of several awards such us BET AWARDS (2015), Ghana Music Awards (2015), Ghana Music Awards UK (2016), Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (2017), All Africa Music Awards (2018) and many more, announced to our microphones the release of his fourth album in the early 2020 and the musical collaboration with Rihanna produced by Dj Khaled. The career of the Artist is actually on the rise. He is also well known because of the special combinations with famous names of the international jamaican scene such as I-Octane, Beenie Man, Mavado, Kabaka Pyramid and Chi Ching Ching. As he revealed, we are waiting for an upcoming feature with the reggae legend Buju Banton too. We talked then about the connections between jamaican and african music as two sides of the same coin. Ultimately, we focused the attention about his philanthropic projects and his independent label.

(Watch the video below)

Interviewer: Eugenia Conti Shooting: Andrew Lives Editing: P. Raw

Gege Vibes interviews Sevana / From Jamaica to the main stage of Rototom Sunsplash 2019

Gege Vibes team met Sevana during Rototom Sunsplash 2019 after her show on the main stage of the Festival. Sevana has grown a lot in the last year recording some hits like “Nobody’s man”, sharing the stage with some great singers like Protoje, Chronixx and Romain Virgo, traveling all over the world. “It’s a blessing”, she said about her career and she kept repeating it during our interview. Sevana, alongside with Koffee and Lila Ike, is certainly the new wave of this young women’s movement from Jamaica. She also explained how important it is for females in the same business to support each other and not fight each other.

Interviewer: Eugenia Conti Shooting: Andrew Lives Editing: Drummstudio Audio e video owned by: Gege Vibes Magazine Special thanks to: Rototom Radio

CASALABATE MUSIC FESTIVAL / Il 4 agosto la sedicesima edizione sul palco al cospetto di Torre Specchiolla (Salento)

Casalabate Music Festival 2019 è la notte dei Massive B, festival salentino che giunge quest’anno alla 16esima edizione con gli ospiti speciali da New York City, il famoso dj e producer Bobby Konders e la sua crew, che si svolge nella località balneare di Casalabate.

Il Festival è esponenzialmente cresciuto negli anni, acquistando di edizione in edizione un pubblico di estimatori e appassionati sempre più folto anche perché, fin dalla sua nascita, ha avuto come “padrino” d’eccezione Sir David Rodigan, leggendario Disk Jockey e giornalista, ospite sempre attesissimo nelle edizioni precedenti, che ha portato alla ribalta la marina salentina con il suo slogan “Casalabataaaa accendino!!!”, diventato poi un vero e proprio must.

Per l’edizione 2019 sul palco al cospetto di Torre Specchiolla, nella suggestiva cornice sul lungomare di Casalabate, si alterneranno alcuni tra i migliori esponenti della scena Reggae nazionale tra cui Rankin Lele e Papa Leu di Adriatic Sound con Morello Selecta, Petra de Sule con Striunizzu dal Salento, Bad Side Massive, Zakalicious, Fireburn, MoreLove, StartaFyah e, per la prima volta sul palco di Casalabate, Brusco una delle figure più importanti della scena reggae italiana con le sue super hits, conosciute e amate da tutti.

Altro ospite d’onore, direttamente dalla città di Portmore, Jamaica, il recording artist Bay-C, noto membro della formazione jamaicana T.O.K. che, dopo aver creato hit di grande successo con il suo gruppo come “Gyals yuh ah lead” e “Eagles Cry”, è attualmente in tour in Europa per il suo progetto solista “Straight outta Portmore” supportato dal potente sound system Yard Beat.

A tenere le redini della serata ci saranno Bobby Konders e Lando Hype dei Massive B, celebre Sound System di New York fin dagli anni ‘80, popolari a livello globale per aver prodotto artisti del calibro di Elephant Man, Burro Banton, Vybz Kartel e molti altri del genere reggae, dancehall e hip hop.

l Festival è diventato anche un vero e proprio progetto di riqualificazione e valorizzazione urbana, integrando nel proprio programma musicale e di intrattenimento anche CAD Casalabate Art District (già avvenuto dal 24 al 28 luglio), manifestazione di street art, che ha visto artisti locali e internazionali riunirsi a Casalabate sotto la direzione artistica di 167/B Street per ridipingere diversi muri della marina. L’evento ha ospitato nella serata finale il live dell’artista jamaicana Tanya Stephens, da sempre impegnata nel sociale e nell’attivismo a favore della propria comunità.

Eugenia Conti

Africa brings its mosaic of cultures on the African Village of Rototom Sunsplash 2019

We all know the big respect that Rototom Sunsplash Festival always showed for Africa creating an program of the African Village that offers music, reflection, learning and dance. African Village represents the more rebellious side of the reggae world, a revolutionary genre that has always been united to Africa and the African cause. This link once again make itself obvious in the 26th edition of the Rototom Sunsplash festival, which has included some interesting changes in one of its most dynamic spaces, without losing its essence. Show, debate, discover and share is the challenge, as well a drinking in the diversity of a continent that fills Benicàssim with vitality. From August 16 to 22, African Village, and the voices that represent it, take centre stage. The Senegalese human rights author and activist Mamadou Dia heads the African Village for the first time, focusing on some of the most important issue that currently matter to the populations of African both internally and externally. All this, with an extra dose of critical thinking, comments Dia, for whom the fact that a reggae festival incorporates a space “to bring Africa closer to Europe and shorten the distances that still separate us” does nothing but “enrich it even more“.

Ataya represents the biggest change in the area. A focal point of direct and close dialogue evolving around the tea ceremony -traditional in the central strip of the continent, from Senegal to Ethiopia- offering space of discussion to prestigious Africans and Afro-descendants, such as the activist Sani Ladan, the writer Desirée Bela-Lobedde and the journalist Lucía Mbomio. Together each day they will discuss, from 16:00 in the shelter of Ataya, the challenges of African dignity from the perspective of cyber-activism -in the talk We will occupy the NET on August 17-; the anti-racist campaign #Wearemore (Sunday 18), which will be present at Rototom along with other initiatives that have sprung up all over Europe, such as the German #WirSindMehr or Love music, hate racism movement in England.

On August 19, it will be the turn of the session Let’s Talk Politics that accepts the challenge of analysing who represents the African and Afro-descendant communities and how they do so. Building a legacy for the new generation (Tuesday 20); Decolonizing the mind and Sustainable Initiatives to create a more dignified, responsible and supportive society (August 21 and 22, respectively), complete the program of debates during the Ataya.

The dancers MakadyIndee Style and Flora (African Dancers Crew) will bring the modern dance moves, with Cumba from Senegal giving a more traditional flavour to the area’s African dance slot, every afternoon from 18:30 to 20:00. They will fuse the day with the dusk perfectly, welcoming in the sonic universe of African Village, which this year offers a musical journey through Ghana, Angola, Senegal and Ethiopia with six leading bands on the bill and DJ sessions at the rhythm of afrobeat and coupé-décalé until dawn.

Every day (except August 22), from 21:30, the African Stage will be the only active stage after the first concert of the Main Stage. A musical epicentre of which the Guinean-Spanish singer Marga Mbande will raise the curtain on August 16, presenting Moulema Beats, a project with electronic sounds, uptempo and touches of afrobeat that also includes the percussionist Jordi Anchobeta Sanz and the DJ and beat maker Ches. On Saturday 17, the Ethiopian vibes will be brought by Qwanqwa, bulwark of experimenting with traditional Ethiopian music and with several festivals and two European tours to their name.

The sounds of Ghana take the African Stage on August 18, with one of the country’s leading bands set to take the international scene, Fokn Bois, that will play their first concert in Spain at Rototom Sunsplash. Their ascendance has been marked most recently by their collaboration with the singer of Blur and the Gorillaz, Damon Albarn.

On August 19, from the same rhythmic universe will be Kwame Ghana High Life. While, on Tuesday the 20th will see Noche Afribuku take the stage, with another of the powerful shows for this year’s edition: the Guiss Guiss Bou and the DJ set with Celeste Mariposa, who will also perform for the first time in Spain on the African Stage.  

The sets of the African Disco will play through dawn at the festival with Dj Douds(Senegal), the area’s resident, who will be joined on Saturday the 17th by N’Zinga(Spain / Nigeria); the Spanish Dj Diego Armando (Sunday 18); Celeste Mariposa(Portugal, August 20) and Betto Snay from Angola (Wednesday 21).

ROTOTOM SUNSPLASH 2019 is “STAND UP FOR EARTH” 26th Edition

 

The international Reggae of the Rototom Sunsplash puts the finishing touches to its imminent edition with some twenty artists who will grace Benicasim, August 16 to 22. With Anthony BMicah Shemaiah & The DreaditesAaron Nigel SmithAcsel & The Reggae Rebel BandRhomanife and Jamaleònics, to name but a few.

Reggae legends celebrating milestone anniversaries, revivals of classic reggae movie soundtracks, a wealth of female empowerment, and an international gathering at three sound system areas… Rototom 2019 offers all this and more

The Main Stage hosts live shows from some of Jamaica’s biggest artists. It’s the place to see Grammy winning son of Bob, Ziggy Marley, cultural reggae’s 21st century heir-apparent Chronixx, highly creative dancehall “deejay” Busy Signal, and first family of modern reggae Morgan Heritage. A recent addition to the top tier of the lineup is fiery Rasta lyricist Anthony B. Also on the Main Stage are veteran harmony groups Israel Vibration, and Culture featuring Kenyatta Hill, versatile Rasta vocalist Queen Ifrica, deep-voiced cultural singer Bushman, and groundbreaking, trendsetting first lady of reggae song, Marcia Griffiths.

In addition, the stage hosts some special anniversary shows. Devout Rastafarian close harmony group the The Abyssinians celebrate their 50th year, progressive reggae outfit Third World commemorate their 45th, while British ska ensemble Selecter and Rasta prophets Misty in Roots both hit their 4th decade in music.

2019 marks Rototom’s 10th year in Spain, and in honour of this momentous occasion and the growth of Spanish reggae, local legends Green Valleymake a triumphant return to Benicassim. They will be putting on a very special show, filled with special guests.

Also representing Spain on the Main Stage are Navarran future dub duo Iseo & Dodosound with the Mousehunters, Madrid harmony trio Emeterians, and Barcelona’s multi-award winning reggae rumba and funk influenced Macaco

The songs from two of reggae’s greatest feature films are showcased by special collaborative performances. The soundtrack to Ted Bafaloukos’ 1978 reggae film Rockers will be recreated on stage by Bernard Collins of the Abyssinians, Big YouthKiddus I and drummer/lead actor Leroy Horsemouth Wallace. Franco Rosso’s powerful British reggae film Babylon will be revisited by original soundtrack creator Dennis Bovell and the movie’s lead, Brinsley Forde.

Completing the Main Stage lineup are Bob Marley’s grandson Jo Mersa, highly intellectual poet Jah9, veteran mento legends the The Jolly Boys, silky-voiced Protoje-signings Lila Iké and Sevana, hugely popular Californian band Slightly Stoopid and French hip hop collective L’Entourloop.

The neighbouring Lion Stage is a home to rising and seasoned reggae talent. It’s the place to find the African dancehall of Ghana’s Stonebwoy, a new album launch by Jamaica’s Warrior King, the soulful conscious reggae of France’s Nâmaan, honey-voiced Jamaican veteran Linval Thompson, and French sound system and production house OBF with emcees Charlie P, Sr Wilson and Shanti D. A diverse line-up includes Polish reggae ambassadors Bednarek, England’s hugely popular Gentleman’s Dub Club, French rebel singer Tairö, and Italian stalwart Brusco. Two brand new announcements are Jamaican roots revivalist Micah Shemaiah and Billboard chart-topping US-based protest singer and educator Aaron Nigel Smith.

The remainder of the Lion Stage roster is testimony to reggae’s international flavour. Europe is represented by Stand High Patrol featuring Marina P (France), Acsel & the Reggae Rebel band, Istituto Italiano Di Cumbia All Stars and exciting new announcement Rhomanife (all from Italy), Eva Lazarus and Mad Professor’s Young Robotiks Band featuring Lady Marga, Zeena, Redhed QI, Joe Ariwa (UK) and Forelock (Sardinia). From further afield come The New York Ska Jazz Ensemble, The US Virgin Islands’ Reemah, and Puerto Rico’s International Dub Ambassadors. The diversity of Spanish reggae is to be heard in the music of Itaca Band, Lasai, The Dance Crashers, All B, Koers and new Lion Stage addition the Jamaleònics. The festival’s commitment to female energy in dub music is enshrined in Women Soldier, a special ensemble of talented vocalists out of Barcelona and Italy, curated by producer Chalart 58.

Rototom has three spectacular sound system areas, each devoted to a different corner of Jamaican music. The Dancehall area hosts a pulsating party with appearances from UK chart hit maker Stylo G, New York-based Jamaican singer Kranium, Kingston collective Ward 21 and recently added Spanish deejay Mad Muasel. Also in attendance are Jamaica’s Stone Love, Renaissance 30, Freddie Krueger and ZJ Liquid, joined by Japan’s legendary Mighty Crown and Jah Works Sound, Germany’s Sentinel, France’s Drum Sound, Panama’s DJ Chiqui Dubs, Israel’s New Zion Sound, England’s V Rocket and Spain’s Blackup. Italy’s Northern Lights celebrating their 20th anniversary, and Rototom legend Lampa Dread are in residence.

The frenetic sounds of 2 Tone, Ska and Cumbia can be heard in the Caribbean Uptempo area. Highlights of the line-up include Jamaican veteran Winston Francis, the UK’s Natty Bo and former Selecter member King Hammond, as well as Colombia’s Banda Melao with appearances by Colombian and Honduran traditional dancers.

Heavier vibrations await at the Dub Academy. The area has invited an unprecedented gathering of sound systems, including The UK’s Iration Steppas, Jah Tubbys and Sinai, plus the Netherlands’ King Shiloh, Barcelona’s Greenlight Sound, France’s Blackboard Jungle, and Italy’s 48 Roots,  Each of these sonic giants will be bringing to this hallowed ground their own stacks. Further guests will be Mad Professor, the Ivory Coast’s producer Jacin, together some surprise acts.

Reggae’s roots in Africa can be experienced in the eclectic rhythms of the African Village. Artists confirmed for this year are Ghana’s quirky Fokn Bois, Senegal’s electronic Sabar and Mbalax fusionists Guiss Guiss Bou Bess, Ghanian highlife from Kwame, multilingual Guinean female artist Marga Mbande, Ethiopian instrumental quintet Qwanqwa, and Afro-fusion group Sahad and the Nataal Patchwork. DJ sets include Lisbon’s Celeste Mariposa, highlighting and exploring the Afro-Portuguese connection.