Interview with Sean ‘Pow’ Diedrick – 2nd Chapter 2018 – Destiny Riddim Special Edition

Gege Vibes meets Sean “Pow” Diedrick in O2 Academy Brixton (London) during Damian Marley Uk Tour Summer 2018. Once again we got an interview with Sean aka Di Producer, owner of the label Young Pow Production, that impressed us by his musical achievements. Indeed, the polyhedral artist is the grammy keyboard player and producer of the year for the credits he gave on Stony Hill Album: R.O.A.R., Autumn Leaves, Slave Mills, Time Travel and the most of the tracks. At the beginning of 2018 he released “Destiny Riddim”, a compilation with various reggae artists. Basically. he decided to remix the famous tune “Where we come from” of Popcaan, juggling the riddim and involving other names as I-Octane, Christopher Ellis, Alaine, Press Kay, Answele, Sowflo, Black Am I and Irie SoulJah. It was nice that on the same instrumental have participated mainstream and upcoming artists from different places as Jamaica, Miami, Spain and Uk. It was a success distributed by Ghetto Youths International with important credits by Sherieta and Baby G. “Di producer” shared his point of view explaining us how he built his own independent project. For the new year there are a new productions to be released, as for example some unfinished Chronixx and Sean Paul. Definitely, Sean is leaving his mark on the World in the name of his original place: Orange Hill, Brown’s Town 

Eugenia Conti 

Interview with Courtney ‘Bam’ Diedrick – Grammy Drummer touring the World with Damian Marley

(Cover Photo credit: @radiantsun9)

Courtney Diedrick, also known as “Bamdrumz”, is the official drummer for Damian Marley. We meet him in O2 Academy Leeds (Uk) during Stony Hill European Tour 2018. Straight from Jamaica, and exactly from Brown’s Town (Saint Ann), “Bam” informs us about the legendary drummers who inspired him during his journey: Carlton Barrett from Bob Marley & The Wailers, Sly from Sly and Robbie, Squidly Cole from Stephen Marley, Deleon White also known as Jubba from Dubtonic Kru and many more. He feels good to inspire the new generations today, especially in his community, because he believes this is the meaning of playing music.

Secondly, he underlines the attachment with his family and to the brothers John, Rayon and Sean. All his siblings are musicians and they helped in molding his career prior to furthering his studies at Edna Manley College of Music in Kingston. His older brother John met Damian in Montego Bay and later introduced Sean aka “Young Pow” for the audition as keyboardplayer, who surprisingly saw that drummers were also being auditioned, so he passed on the news to “Bam”. His history began much earlier when he started playing in church at age of 16, later on in Hotels, teaching music in high school and now touring the world with “Jr Gong”. He still remembers his level of anxiety when he went to audition to play and he could see a long line of drummers from around the world waiting for their turn. Despite the insecurities of the moment, Courtney “did his thing” and reached the goal. He discussed the importance of never forgetting that positive vibration that musicians should feel when playing their instruments. He tries to treat every opportunity he gets to play with passion as if it was his first time playing the drums: “Playing with Damian is a great feeling that will never leave me because the moment you lose that feeling, you lose everything”. 

Then we talk about the most beautiful memories of his tours in the world: “We have a lot of highlights and many other stuffs that have happened on the road, but to visit the Mother Land Africa was a huge deal for me, it was always my dream even before I started touring.”. “Bam” tells us how much his origins have influenced even his style of playing. Reggae is a music full of feelings that reminds us of the past, for example slavery: “You can feel emotions in reggae – he continued – and my playing has a lot to do with my roots and my culture”.

Courtney is the Grammy Drummer of this year with “Stony Hill” Album. Nicely, he gives thanks to all the fans for it sharing with them his happiness about this result:“I rememeber all the nights that we spent in the studio with my crew without getting any sleep and now this great joy finally pays off”.

  (Photo Credit: @itseltonbrown)

He didn’t work only with Damian Marley but with several international artists as Mick Jagger, Nas, Kieth Richards, Eric Clapton, Dave Stewart, Joss Stone, Playing for Change P.F.C., I-Taweh, Jah Cure and many more. Playing for Change is a project between street musicians and mainstream ones from all over the World. This group is the perfect example to show people we are more alike than different and it doesn’t matter our culture or the color of our skin. Reggae music is a universal language.

One of Courtney’s future projects is to give more light to the jamaican drummers featuring them on a documentary. Another project is about his productions that are in a pause right now, but will be out soon.

Passion, talent, determination, attitude, gratitude and humbleness are just some of the features that makes Diedrick so popular and respected in the actual worldwide musical scene. We are waiting to hear his riddims and to appreciate him in the role of producer as well.

Eugenia Conti

 

ROTOTOM SUNSPLASH 2018 DAY 01 / Stars of the main stage : Julian Marley, Cocoa Tea Ft Koffee and Ben Harper

The first night of “Rototom Sunsplash 2018 – 25 years walking together” was explosive. The day one of the biggest European Reggae Festival started last evening with high-level performances. On the main stage there were Julian Marley from Jamaica, Cocoa Team ft Koffee from Jamaica and Ben Harper from Usa. Julian Marley & the Uprising gave us a great show as usual. “Juju” conquered the spectators reinterpreting some Bob Marley’s hits like One Love and Exodus. The brand new album of Julian Marley will be out very soon. Then there was the turn of Cocoa Tea that smashed up the stage. His energy was incredible for the whole performance and his special guest Koffee was the real revelation for the Rototom’s crowd. Koffee is only 18 years old, but her talent and intelligence is impressive. She was defining herself blessed to have the opportunity to share the stage with a veteran name of the Jamaican music as her mentor Cocoa Tea. Last star on the main stage was Ben Harper. Ben leaded the massive during the show with his historical band the Innocent Criminals and the sound of his own guitar. After it everyone moved in the dancehall area to enjoy Spice’s performance and the New Level Bcn Crew, sound system from Spain. Spice confirmed yesterday in Benicasim her title of “Reina of Dancehall” and we must give a big up to her official dancer Rebel as well. Tonight we’re attending legendary names on the main stage: Groundation (Usa), Sly & Robbie, Yellow Man, Johnny Osbourne, Bitty McLean (Jamaica/Uk) and “dulcis in fundo” Jimmy Cliff (Jamaica).

Article Eugenia Conti

Photo Gallery Noctis

Rototom History / I 25 anni del Festival reggae più grande di Europa riassunti in un video ufficiale

Dal 16 al 22 agosto 2018 si terrà la venticinquesima edizione del Rototom Sunsplash a Benicassim, Spagna. Per celebrare il quarto di secolo la produzione ha pensato bene di mandare online un video riassuntivo di cosa è accaduto dal 1993 ad oggi. Correva l’anno 1994 quando si teneva il primo Rototom Sunsplash considerato al contempo il primo raduno reggae nazionale in Italia. Un two days Festival con ospite di eccezione il tanto amato Buju Banton che potremo finalmente rivedere in tour a partire da Dicembre 2018. Dai 1000 spettatori del ’94 si passa ai 3000 del 1995. Bisogna aspettare il ’98 perchè il Festival si sposti in una delle sue location storiche ovvero il Camping Girasole di Lignano Sabbiadoro. Gli spettatori cominciano già a salire ad un numero di 20000 ad edizione. Nel 2000 il Rototom si sposta ad Osoppo ed è il vero trampolino di lancio per il Festival che da evento nazionale si erige ad evento internazionale. Nel Parco di Rivellino per la precisione, la durata del Festival si estende ad 8-10 giorni e la venue’s capacity si allarga a 250000 persone. Un vero e proprio salto di qualità. Nascono tutte le attività satelliti al Festival come il Foro Social, dedicato a trattare problemi relativi alla società odierna; la Reggae University, uno spazio in cui vengono impartite vere e proprie lezioni concernenti il mondo della reggae music; Vivir la Energia, dedicato alla meditazione ed allo joga, Magico Gioco, per i più piccoli ed African Village, un’area dove la cultura africana viene riprodotta in tutte le sue forme, dalla cucina alle percussioni, ai tipici hair-styles. Un’altra importante iniziativa promossa sempre dalla Produzione è l’European Reggae Contest (svolto dal 2002 al 2014) tra Francia, Germania, Uk, Italia Spagna, Svizzera, Danimarca, Portogallo ed altre nazioni. Nel 2010, il Rototom si sposta in Spagna per dare vita ad un evento ancora più di stampo mondiale e creare quindi un macro Festival. Nasce il Latin Contest dedicato a paesi del Sud America come Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Venezuela and more. Iniziano anche i Launch Parties di presentazione all’evento che si estendono in Europa ed in America in città come New York, Londra, Praga, Roma, Bogotà, Marsiglia, Ibiza, Berlino ed altre. A Benicassim il Festival assume una valenza familiare ottenendo il titolo di Family Friend Festival. Ovviamente, anche in Spagna si continuano a mantenere i valori guida del Festival, ovvero la difesa della pace e dei diritti umani. Lo slogan dopo 25 anni dice ancora “Un altro mondo è possibile”.

Eugenia Conti

ROTOTOM SUNSPLASH 2018 is #25YEARSWALKINGTOGETHER Edition

#25yearswalingtogether is the slogan created by Rototom Sunsplash to celebrate his 25 Edition. A fourth of century is already passed but not the memory of the places where everything was started : in Pordenone and Osoppo, Italy. Actually Rototom Sunsplash is organized every summer in Benicassim, Spain . In these 25 years a lot of people was reunited in the mighty name of the stars of reggae and their philosophy. More than 3.2 million people reached Rototom Sunsplash along the different editions, coming from all the Continents of the World. Today this Festival is considered the biggest one in Europe and one of the most important in the World. On the stage, along the different years, more than 2,300 artists alternated. This summer it will be exactly from 16th to the 22nd of August. ’25 years walking together ‘ means prestigious artists of the old and the new generation will be there performing in unity.

Check The entire line up 2018 on the official website : https://rototomsunsplash.com/it/line-up/

Julian Marley and the Uprising, Tarrus Riley, Jimmy Cliff, Spice, Cocoa Tea ft Koffee, The Mighty Diamonds, David Rodigan, Spice, Konshens are only some of the popular singers and bands will perform on the main stage or in the Dancehall area. But remember there are more than two stages. There are 5 options : Main Stage, Dancehall, Lion Stage, Dub Academy and Carribean Tempo. Plus Rototom Sunsplash is not only music. It’s even “Foro Social”, culture, experiences, great food, camping, African Village, Beach, workshops for dancehall dancers, social projects, press conferences, stands and many many more. That’s why we will delve into a different topic about Rototom #25yearswalkingtogether every week before it starts. We guess this edition must be rich of unforgettable vibes.

 

Eugenia Conti 

VIDEO INTERVIEW WITH JUNIOR KELLY (2018) / “Urban Poet is the number one underground album”

Gege Vibes met Junior Kelly in Melkweg, Amsterdam during the event Easter Special Reggaeville (April 2018). Reviewing his last album “Urban Poet” and deepening in the main songs as “I wanna be your hero”, “Everybody needs somebody” or “Power to the people”, we also talked about his charity project called “People helping people” focused in sharing food with poor people on the roads in Jamaica. Ultimately, Jr Kelly invited the youths to don’t lose the spirituality because of the technology.

Interviewer : Eugenia Conti Shooting : Giulio Lofari Editing : Young Man Productions Special thanks to : Junior Kelly, Reggaeville.