Waka Recap, #TNReggae and Beyond

#TNReggae familia at Wakarusa Music Festival June 4-7, 2015.

#TNReggae familia at Wakarusa Music Festival June 4-7, 2015.

Hi,

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!

The crazy thing was a few weeks before our Waka Classic Show when our #TNReggae brethren Chinese Connection Dub Embassy (CCDE) won their Waka Classic in Memphis, TN! CCDE has been family to us for three + years and it has been a beautiful unity, guided only by the Most High. So when Omar Higgins of CCDE called me the day of our Waka Classic show to overstand the Divine Signs of the Unity that IS #TNReggae I was wholly inspired and that hour and a half conversation was a serious blessing at the time because I was stressing about some unnecessary BS at the moment. Omar really lifted me up out of my own head with his words of encouragement and “IRIE” feeling he had about the show that night. I was ready to go, thanks to Him.
 
This is simply one example of why I believe that #TNReggae is a serious (and light-hearted) movement (of many movements around the World) full of like-minded, kindred spirits coming together as a community of artists and musicians who love a wide variety of music but are united by a passionate love for classic Roots Reggae, Rock SteadySka, and Dub music created in Jamaica in the 1950s-70s like Joe Higgs, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, Jacob Miller, Dennis Brown, The Twinkle Brothers, Alton Ellis, Gregory Issacs, Garnett SilkLee Scratch Perry, King Tubby, The Congos , Culture and SO much more. Each of us love Reggae music for different reasons and obviously have different tastes and preferences (that’s what makes collaboration so fun and interesting) but I think some reasons we can all agree upon are the following:
 
1. Reggae music simply feels good.
2. Reggae music has conscious, uplifting lyrics.
So in a world of endless problems and SO many people with SO many things to say, I simply try and bow my head, listen, and give thanks for the healing power of music to help find fellow believers like yourself who take time to consider another perspective. The world is changing, and although it may seem like it’s collapsing, this can only mean a New Age and “New” New World will be born. Yup, talking about that NewNew! The question is what will WE do? And WHEN will we do IT?
 
The picture above is of this beautiful community of friends we have found and continue to foster in Nashville and beyond. This WAKA SQUAD camped out for five days in the Mulberry Mountains of Ozark, AR in the heat and everythin’! The week was made all the more enjoyable thanks to our bandmates and engineer’s independent record label: Dub Cellar Records providing and debuting their official mini sound system running on a car battery so we could bump whatever music we wanted in the campgrounds and it would sound reeeeal goooooooood. We also experimented with “Toasting” and “Dub Offs” on the Korg Monotron Delay Synthesizer. Listen to our late night Sunday/early Monday morning session after all of the music was done at Waka here: https://soundcloud.com/dub-cellar-records/mokie-dub-in-session-at-wakarusa#t=0:00 with none other than Mokie Dub AKA Grant Husselman (founder of Dub Cellar Records) spearheading the controls. Wakarusa was a pivotal moment for Roots of a Rebellion, Dub Cellar Records and this #TNReggae community at large. 
 
So the journey continues, onward and upward, this weekend to the state of Ohio, where our bassist Ras Adam was born and raised. Tonight we’ll be linking up with Elementree Livity Project at Woodlands Tavern in Columbus, OH, then spending the weekend in Cleveland for the first time as a band–playing at The Avenue Taphouse in Lakeland on Friday, then at Shooters in Cleveland on Saturday benefitting Beyond Words Foundation for Autism.
 
Next weekend we’re finishing out June with a big hometown show on Friday the 26th: Jammin’ on Cannery Island at The High Watt then Saturday the 27th: Stanley’s Reggae Fest 5 at Stanley’s Pub in Cincinnati, OH.
 
Blessed to be working, loving, living life to the fullest in every meaning of the phrase, for we truly do experience the HIGHS and LOWS of this artistic lifestyle….long nights, early mornings, odd-jobs, non-stop motion, driving, riding, packing, unpacking, practicing, rehearsing, jamming, laughing, smiling, crying, discussing, writing, reading, chatting, listening, and most importantly ENJOYING each other’s company. It’s not “all good” and there’s no such thing as “no worries” —I think we just say these phrases to keep the positive vibe alive and well ;)
 
Thank you for reading all of this.
 
I hope our music positively affects your life in some way. 
 
Peace and Love to you and yours,
 
Austin and The Crew
 

Wakarusa–June 4-7 in Ozark, AR!


Click For More Info About Wakarusa 2015!

Too blessed to stress cause we’re playing one of the BEST festivals in the country this summer in Ozark, AR!

WAKARUSA

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!

Wakarusa–June 4th-7th!

wakaround2

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!

Eternally grateful,

Your friends in Roots of a Rebellion

Big ‘Tings in 2015!

ACME Band Photo

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!

Jah bless!

-Austin and your friends in Roots of a Rebellion

Give Thanks for 2014!

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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’ve become good friends and practically family with bands we love like Sun Dried Vibes and Queen City Dub

-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

-we released our debut full length album “Heartifact” at The Basement (below Grimeys) in Nashville

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

Fall Update

Greetings familia!

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

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

Floralorix: http://facebook.com/floralorix

Jo’shua Odine: http://soundcloud.com/joshua-odine

MD and cobalt Blue: http://mdandcobaltblue.com/

Paradise Daze: www.facebook.com/paradisedazemusic

The LTG : www.facebook.com/pages/leterogeon-brothers

Ras Adam and the Dubraelites: www.facebook.com/pages/Ras-Adam-The-Dubraelites

Greetings from Florida!

Heady Manatee Tour

Hola familia!

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!

Bless up!

Jammin’ on Elliston Island II this Saturday at Exit/In!

Jammin' on Elliston Island II on Saturday, September 13th at Exit/In

Jammin’ on Elliston Island II on Saturday, September 13th at Exit/In 

We are just days away from the BIGGEST local reggae night Music City has ever seen!

This Saturday (9/13) at the historic Exit/In we will be “Jammin’ on Elliston Island” with our dear friends Soul Radics, The Chinese Connection Dub Embassy, Floralorix, Jo’shua Odine, and more! 


The concept for “Jammin’ on Elliston Island” was envisioning the eventual growth of this community to have the entire street (Elliston Place) flooded with artists and musicians who are spreading their own unique version of the message in the form of roots, rock, reggae, dub, or ska music.

Acoustic music will start at 5pm on the “Tiki Bar Patio” (between Exit/In and Hurry Back), then the first band to lay down heavy vibes inside Exit/In will be Floralorix at 8pm.

This event is all about THIS community of like-minded spirits who are seeking to grow both individually and collectively—on stage and off stage. As always, thank you for showing love and supporting our dream of a life of music. 

$10 or 10 canned food items gets you in the door! 


Hope you can come out and experience the irie vibes this Saturday

“Heartifact” in stores now!

 “Heartifact” is now available for you to purchase and experience! If you can, take an hour to listen to it from start to finish, it will take you on a journey for sure! Thanks for the love and support!

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/heartifact/id899249384

http://rootsofarebellion.bandcamp.com/album/heartifact

ROARheartifactReleasePoster copy

 

 

 

 

 

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