On April 5th, New York City based, multi-ethnic reggae outfit Easy Star All Stars will release their first full length record of original material entitled First Light. Famous for their reggae reworkings of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, Radiohead’s OK Computer, and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band by The Beatles, First Light is their second release of original material, preceded by 2008’s EP Until That Day.
The All Stars’ LP proves that in addition to having a knack for remaking classic rock records, they also possess a wealth of original songwriting talent. This album takes the listener on a rhythmic ride through traditional reggae with hints of dub, soul and R&B.
Drawing from a sizable pool of talent makes for a diverse range of lead vocals. Musical guests Jr. Jazz and Daddy Lion Chandell duet as a police officer and ganja farmer on opposite ends of a crop spectrum on “One Likkle Draw.” On “Something Went Wrong” and “Don’t Stop the Music” Menny More’s soulful vocals coupled with easy reggae grooves transport the listener to a distant worry-free land. “Easy Now Star,” featuring The Meditations, Lady Ann and Tony Tuff (of the African Brothers) pays tribute to the late Sugar Minott.
Whether providing luscious backing vocals, or singing lead on one of the five lady-led tracks, Joanne Williams and Kirsty Rock have two of the most beautiful voices in contemporary reggae music. A tight group of musicians, complete with saxophone, trumpet and trombone provide a solid platform for all of these songs to stand tall. While a few of these songs have been debuted in a live setting already, be sure to catch them on one of their 23 tour stops starting tonight in Vermont for the full monty.
Easy Star All-Stars First Light Tour:
3/23/2011 Mt. Snow Mt. Snow, VT
3/31/2011 Bourbon Quarter Baltimore, MD*+
4/1/2011 Jefferson Theatre Charlottesville, VA*+
4/2/2011 The Orange Peel Asheville, NC*+
4/3/2011 Cat's Cradle Carrboro, NC*+
4/5/2011 The Soapbox Wilmington, NC*+
4/6/2011 The Music Farm Charleston, SC*+
4/7/2011 Freebird Live Jacksonville, FL*+
4/8/2011 Plaza Theatre Orlando, FL*+ (part of Florida Music Fest)
4/9/2011 Culture Room Ft. Lauderdale, FL*+
4/10/2011 State Theatre St. Petersburg, FL*+
4/12/2011 Common Ground Gainesville, FL+
4/13/2011 Seville Quarters Pensacola, FL+
4/14/2011 New Earth Music Hall Athens, GA+
4/16/2011 World Café Live Wilmington, DE +
4/17/2011 World Café Live Philadelphia, PA +
4/20/2011 Highline Ballroom New York, NY+^
4/21/2011 Castaways Ithaca, NY +
4/22/2011 Westcott Theatre Syracuse, NY +
4/23/2011 The Great Hall Toronto, ON +
4/25/2011 Cabaret Mile End Montreal, QC +
4/26/2011 Higher Ground Burlington, VT +
5/20/2011 Hangout Music Festival Gulf Shores, AL