It’s hard to express just how excited we are to bring our music to Colorado next week! Blessed to be traveling with our brother band Sun Dried Vibes. Beyond blessed to be working at serving up positive vibes and conscious rhymes to help us all overcome the struggle of this human condition.
Stay up, stay well!
I would like to express my gratitude for YOUR love and support of mine and my brothers’ dream of creating a life in music. Simply by reading this post, you are tuning into the lives of six men and our families and friends striving to make a positive impact with an eclectic sound rooted in a devotional study of Roots-Reggae-Rocksteady-Ska music combined with our personal tastes that vary from Hard Rock, Hip-Hop, Soul, Folk, Country, and dare I say Pop. I am blessed to be playing music with such talented and driven musicians/songwriters, but I am even MORE blessed to be playing music with my friends who genuinely care for the well being of one another. It needs no explaining.
But what does need explaining, in my opinion, is the reason we do what we do. Why do we drive all day and night in a sweaty, smelly, rickety ole van? Why do we drive all the way to some city far away to play for a handful of people and make literally a couple dollars? Why do we rehearse all the time? Why do we work other side jobs, leaving ourselves very little downtime and even less money? Why do we sacrifice the things and most importantly the precious time with people we love back home?
The answer, my friends, is LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. From LOVE is how we were made, and although this LOVE may seem faded, withered, or torn. We ALL know what LOVE is. It’s what Jesus Christ, Haile Selassie I, Jah Rastafari, Krishna, Buddha, and Allah ALL preach about. It is an AGAPE kind of LOVE that binds us all as children of the Universe. The Great Mysterious Universe that we will never fully understand, but if we spend our time wisely with introspection and meaningful conversation with loved ones, we CAN find PEACE and LOVE within.
“Yesterday I was a fool and tried to change the world. Today I am wise and try and change myself”
“Inner Peace leads to World Peace”
Thank you for reading and may PEACE and LOVE be with you and yours,
My name is Austin and let me warn you that the following paragraphs are A LOT of words, links, personal observations, beliefs, and experiences. I’m sorry I’m not sorry ;) These words express my feelings at this present moment, giving everything I can and more to help Roots of a Rebellion achieve a blessed life full of music, family, and community. Thank YOU for showing love and supporting six young men’s dream, and again, feel free to take your time with this one ;)
A little over a week ago, we had the privilege of playing at Wakarusa Music Festival in Ozark, AR thanks to our Roots Crew friends and family who voted for us to win the Waka Classic Competition at 12th and Porter in our hometown of Nashville, TN in February earlier this year. Wakarusa is a serious music festival that this year alone boasted some incredible artists and musicians such as: The Roots, Thievery Corporation, Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, STS9, Umphrey’s Mcgee, Rebelution, Matisyahu, The Expendables, Nahko & Medicine for the People, Stick Figure, and many more!
Too blessed to stress cause we’re playing one of the BEST festivals in the country this summer in Ozark, AR!
Our first set will be on Saturday at The River stage from 2:00-2:45pm, our second set will be on Sunday at the Backwoods Stage from 9:30-10:45pm!
See you there!
A few weeks ago, our extremely loyal Roots Crew family, friends and fans helped us win the Waka Winter Classic at 12th and Porter here in Nashville, TN securing us a spot on this year’s Wakarusa Music Festival June 4th-7th in Ozark, Arkansas!
We are honored and humbled to receive this opportunity to do our thing at such an AWESOME music festival. Thank YOU for supporting our dream of a life of music. We hope you are enjoying the new single “Stronger” featuring Zach Fowler of Sun Dried Vibes as well as our debut album Heartifact!
Our next show isn’t until Saturday, March 21st at Mercy Lounge supporting our friends Backup Planet as they release their debut album, so we will be taking this week to work on some brand new material that has been waiting to get tackled for quite sometime now!
Check out our other upcoming shows this Spring and hopefully we’ll see you out there in the flesh and Spirit!
Your friends in Roots of a Rebellion
Happy New Year y’all!
We hope you are ready for the best year yet–living right, loving right and listening to Midnite as much as possible!
We have a lot of exciting things happening this year already.
In a couple weeks we have the privilege of sharing the stage with one of the biggest Reggae bands in the country: Rebelution at one of the coolest new venues in Nashville: Marathon Music Works!
Facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/616924525096371/
Then less than a week after that, we have the privilege of sharing the stage with another one of the biggest Reggae bands in the country: Passafire at Zydeco in Birmingham, AL!
Facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/314761022058045/
It’s kinda crazy to think that five years ago was the first time I heard “Courage To Grow” and shortly after that I first heard “Feel It” and now I get to share the stage with the artists who strongly influence me musically AND spiritually!
Then right after that we’ll be back in Memphis for the Forever Loving Bob Marley Tribute Show with our brothers in Chinese Connection Dub Embassy followed by the third installment of our very own local and original Reggae/Rock/Jam night at Exit/In here in Nashville called “Jammin’ on Elliston Island 3”!
Hope to see you out there as we keep on progressing with new music and new ways of treating one another this year!
-Austin and your friends in Roots of a Rebellion
Roots Crew familia,
What a van, what a trailer, what a tour, and what a year!
We hope you and yours are staying warm and full of spirit this holiday season.
We have much to be grateful for this year….
-we played 110+ shows in 2014
-we started our own quarterly Roots-Rock-Reggae-Jam night in Nashville at Exit/In AKA “Jammin on Elliston Island”
-we played more music festivals this summer than any of us in the band have even been to…
-we discovered like-minded tribes of people in love with Reggae music in the Southeast
And so much more, the list really could go on and on…
So as the year winds down we just want to say THANK YOU and invite you to our last show which will be on New Years Eve at Soulshine Pizza with Dynamo and Andy Dozier & Heavy Soul! It’s free and there will be a free champagne toast at midnight.
Next year we plan to continue moving forward with more shows, new music, and a whole lot of other fun stuff!
We are getting closer and closer to having our passion pay our bills and it’s only because of YOUR love and support that any of this is possible. We have no grand visions of “blowing up” or getting “picked up” by some record label, we simply want to continue to grow and develop as musicians and humans…and we believe, wholeheartedly, that with fans like ours we can be our own bosses for as long as this dream continues…. (just look at Chadwick Stokes of Dispatch and State Radio!)
Here’s to supporting each other’s hopes and dreams in this cold, dark world…offering one another the peace of mind that music provides to help keep our inner light turned on, always and forever…
Peace and Love!
-Roots of a Rebellion
We’ve spent that last two weeks in Florida soaking up the sun and connecting with some like minded individuals!
We’ve been listening to heavy amounts of Jah Shaka, Mad Professor, Midnite, and the brand new Kevin Kinsella record “Riding Higher Still” which from the sounds of it, THUNDERBODY had an important role in producing.
We’re sitting here in Rock Hill, SC, home to our good friends Sun Dried Vibes gearing up for some fun nights of music ahead…
Tuesday, November 4th at Madison’s On The Corner (Fort Mill, SC)
Thursday, November 6th at Pour House Music Hall (Raleigh, NC) w/ Sun Dried Vibes
Friday, November 7th at Asheville Music Hall (Asheville, NC) w/ Nappy Riddem
Saturday, November 8th at Bar Marley (Knoxville, TN)
Then we’ll be home in Nashville for a few days before we’re back on the weekend warrior grind:
Thursday, November 13th at Hideaway Saloon (Louisville, KY) w/ Shrub
Friday, November 14th at Woodlands Tavern (Columbus, OH) w/ Elementree Livity Project
Friday, November 21st at The Stone Fox (Nashville, TN) w/ The Get Right Band, Soul Mechanic, and Rashad The Poet
Saturday, November 22nd at The Chop Shop (Charlotte, NC) w/ Sun Dried Vibes, Queen City Dub, and more!
Friday, November 28th at Marathon Music Works (Nashville, TN) w/ Trombone Shorty
Stay up and bless up!
A Lion’s ROAR Sparks Nashville’s Reggae Arrival
By: Michael Lenz
Listen closely…can you hear it? It’s the sounds of sweet reggae music!
While Music City may be better known for its country music scene; a devoted community has been quietly, yet steadily forming around a collection of artists and bands rooted in a love for traditional reggae music. Delivering a message of “peace, love and unity,” Nashvillians have been drawn to a genre that finds its roots in the countryside of Jamaica; and its expression in a spiritual, living God–a way of life known as: Jah Rastafari.
Helping this movement has been the band: Roots of a Rebellion. ROAR, as they are affectionately known; first met at Belmont University in 2010. It was there through jam sessions, recordings, and playing house parties that the band first discovered their unique sound that could now be described as “spiritual jam rock reggae.”
Troy Wiggins, drummer for the up and coming act, explains that their music has a deep and resonating spiritual message:
“Our music is about positivity and the attainment of consciousness, we want our music to be about something that is greater than ourselves.”
Wiggins is joined in this spiritual quest through music by band mates Austin Smith, lead singer and guitarist; Justin Smith, on trumpet; Marco Martinez, lead guitarist and harmonica; Jeremyck Smith, on Keys and melodica, and Adam Quellhorst on bass guitar.
The band’s unique blend of reggae, rock, and dub music has caught on with their passionate followers. The band’s music first reached a wide spread audience with their 2012 performance at Live on the Green. ROAR earned their spot at the popular concert series by winning Lightning 100’s Music City Mayhem competition. Since then, the band is blessed to have played countless shows in the Southeast. Some of the notable ones include sharing the stage with The Wailers, Slightly Stoopid, SOJA, Moe, NEEDTOBREATHE, and The North Mississippi Allstars.
On August 8th the band released their debut full-length album, “Heartifact” to a sold out crowd at the historic venue: The Basement. The album could be described as a living energy expressed through its heavy drum and bass rhythms, melodic harmonies and psychedelic-jam rock grooves.
Roots of a Rebellion show no signs of slowing down. Fresh off the first leg of their twenty-three city “What a Van Tour”, through the North and Southeastern United States, the band hosted the first ever “Jammin’ on Elliston Island” at Nashville’s revered Exit/In on June 7th. After positive reception from the community, “Jammin on Elliston Island II” is scheduled for Saturday, September 13th at Exit/In. The night will begin on the Hurry Back patio with raw, acoustic performances from Jo’shua Odine. Then inside the Exit/In, four bands will blow the roof off the house with the infectious rhythms and vibes from: Floralorix, The Chinese Connection Dub Embassy, Roots of a Rebellion, and Soul Radics.
Soul Radics hit the Nashville scene with blistering traditional sounds and gritty soulful melodies back in 2011. Virtually fearless, it’s an original take on ska, reggae and rocksteady with powerful female vocals and heavy, hard-hitting “riddims.” The band also features previous members of Nashville reggae veterans: AKA Rudie.
Joining ROAR and Soul Radics are Memphis based band: The Chinese Connection Dub Embassy, whose sound could be described as roots reggae meets soul (AKA Stax Reggae).
Rounding out the lineup is Floralorix—a newly founded reggae rock band whose members are more than familiar with this Tennessee reggae community.
Other notable reggae acts in Nashville that are not participating in “Jammin’ II” include:
MD and Cobalt Blue; Paradise Daze; The LTG; Downbeat Abbey All-Stars, and Ras Adam and The Dubraelites.
This scene has been emerging here in Music City for quite some time. If you want to inject some positivity into your life, put on your dancing shoes and come get “irie” to the sounds of sweet reggae music!
For information about any of the above-mentioned acts check them out:
Roots of a Rebellion: http://rootsofarebellion.com/
Soul Radics: http://facebook.com/soulradics
Chinese Connection Dub Embassy: www.ccde.bandcamp.com
Jo’shua Odine: http://soundcloud.com/joshua-odine
MD and cobalt Blue: http://mdandcobaltblue.com/
Paradise Daze: www.facebook.com/paradisedazemusic
Ras Adam and the Dubraelites: www.facebook.com/pages/Ras-Adam-The-Dubraelites
We are more than happy to be holding onto Summer for as long as possible down here in Florida. We had a great time linking up with our brethren in TreeHouse! last night at Freebird Live in Jacksonville, FL.
Now we have a few days to fix up the What-A-Van and trailer before we head further South in Florida.
Thank you for checking in and we hope to see you out there soon!