Richie Spice and Spanner Banner are confirming shows for a western U.S. tour this August / September 2009. They recently returned from a European tour this winter, and last summer they did the European festival circuit. This summer, they are slated to tour the western U.S. extensively, after having saturated the east coast, Europe, the UK and the islands.
There is a whole barrage of righteous people on the west coast, eager to see them perform live in the different cities and towns, up close and in person. Richie Spice and Spanner Banner are now still scarce on the west coast, having performed primarily on the major festivals there such as Reggae on the River, The Sierra Nevada World Music Festival, the Bob Marley Day Festivals and a few other spot dates. The world has embraced the uplifting music of Richie Spice and Spanner Banner, so it is full time that they embark on such a tour.
Richie Spice is currently one of the hottest commodities worldwide in cultural reggae music, moving with a positive message and a full, strong entourage. As they performed in Europe on the festivals last summer, musicians from the other bands watched closely in approval as they executed their dynamic set.
Earth a Run Red, his biggest hit, dominated the airwaves in a positive and conscious manner for many years. People are enthusiastic to hear this and some of his newer works, such as Grooving My Girl live, so look out for this upcoming summer tour, which also features Spice’s brother – Spanner Banner – who gave us the hit – Life Goes On. This package presents top new breed reggae artists, along with some of the finest musicians out of Jamaica. For further information, go to Richie Spice’s website at: www.richiespice.net
BIOGRAPHY: RICHIE SPICE
In the Old Testament’s Book of Judges, Gideon led Israel to victory over the Midianites, who dwelled in the southeastern part of Palestine, with a small army equipped with only trumpets, lit torches and jars to conceal the torches’ flames. Following Gideon’s instructions, his three hundred soldiers blew their trumpets and smashed their jars as they shouted “a sword for the Lord, a sword for Gideon”. With that,the tens of thousands of Midianite troops fled in fear.
Armed with just a microphone, one-drop rhythms and purifying lyrical flames, singer Richie Spice is the Gideon of contemporary reggae. The publicly declared “prince of fire” uses culturally uplifting, spiritually fortified words to defeat the negative content that informs much of popular (Jamaican) music. Fittingly, Gideon Boot is the title track of Spice’s brilliant fourth album. Recorded over the timeless Johnny Too Bad rhythm (taken from The Slickers 1970s hit of the same name, popularized in the film The Harder They Come) the song details Spice’s strategic plan for delivering his musical sermon to an awaiting global audience. “I need a Gideon boot and a khaki suit to stand out inna Babylon and defend the truth/ I got a strong reggae beat with a mic in my hand fe lead out de youth dem outta destruction and let de people know right from wrong.”
Just like the singer’s previous albums “Universal”, “Spice In Your Life” and “In The
Streets to Africa”, “Gideon Boot” contains inspiring messages specifically aimed at empowering vulnerable youth. Spice confidently juxtaposes his songs of valor with unity themes (“Living In Love”, “Getting Harder”) and the importance of staying focused – “Make Up Your Mind”, “Hang On In There”. Spice’s flawless vocals effortlessly scale the high notes then smoothly segue into scatted improvisations as he weaves intricate, evocative melodies throughout this exquisite 15-track set that is certain to carry his name to un chartered territories for Jamaican music.
The traditional Rastafarian Nyabinghi drumming that dominates the opening cut “Babylon Falling” heralds the seriousness of Spice’s musical mission. “World Is A Cycle”, sung over producer Arif Cooper’s haunting “Guardian Angel” rhythm, is, as Spice explains, “a song for the children and for the parents saying be careful because what you do can fall right back on you and your kids.”
Also included is the current Jamaican hit “The Plane Land” which display’s Spice’s superb story telling skills. The song’s lyrics detail the frustration that oftentimes accompanies post 9/11travel. “Saddle up myself fe take interrogationÃ¢â‚¬Â¦tek off mi shoes, tek off mi tam, if they ever find you with a spliff yu gone another land.” “It is a song everyone can relate to if they travel,” notes Spice, “and if they don’t travel, they will learn this is what we go through as entertainers as we go to other countries.”
Since 2004, when his apocalyptic single “Earth A Run Red” became the year’s most popular reggae song, Richie Spice has performed throughout the world, insuring that cultural roots reggae isn’t relegated to a bygone era but continues as a thriving, evolving musical genre.
Born Richell Bonner in the Kingston, Jamaica suburb of St. Andrew, Richie Spice hails from a musical family that includes his older brother Pliers (from the deejay/singer duo Chaka Demus and Pliers of “Murder She Wrote” fame), singer Spanner Banner and deejay Snatcher Dogg. It was Spanner Banner, (best known for his mid 90s hit “Life Goes On”) who first brought Spice to the recording studio; the hopeful singer, admittedly, couldn’t manage the rigors of professional recording but the opportunity opened his eyes to the proficiency required to succeed in the reggae industry. “That experience show me that to reach anywhere there is a lot of work to be done,” Spice reflects.
Spice continued working towards gaining a foothold in the music industry and shortly thereafter he met veteran producer Clive Hunt who produced his breakthrough single, the engaging lovers rock tune “Grooving My Girl”, still one of the most popular songs in Spice’s repertoire. “Grooving” was initially featured on Spice’s 2000 debut album “Universal”, as was the song that would make him a household name in Jamaica, “Earth A Run Red”.
Since 2004 Spice has become one of reggae’s most in demand talents and the recipient of numerous awards and accolades. He received the Most Cultural Artist Award at the 13th annual South Florida Reggae Soca Awards in 2005; he was voted the Male Singer/Singjay of the Year at Jamaica’s IRIE FM Awards in 2007 and following his performance at the first annual “Black My Story” concert held in Kingston on Feb. 2, 2008 Spice was honored for his positive musical contributions. His 2004 album “Spice in Your Life” was listed among the year’s best reggae releases by the New York Times; “In the Streets To Africa”, released in 2007, reached number 6 on the Billboard Reggae chart and one of the album’s biggest hits “Youth Dem Cold” peaked at number 59 on the Billboard Top 100 Singles Chart and ranked at number 29 on Vibe Magazine’s Best 44 songs of 2007. Now with the release of “Gideon Boot” even greater recognition is assured for Spice’s talent, as is the expansion of his international fan base.
“I’ve always had a wide meditation of having my music go out there to the world because I know it can go far,” says Spice. “But it is very hard singing of righteousness in the world. When you sing of good you will find that evil rise up and try to dominate good. But I will continue the fight, go out there and have people hear what I am saying.”
BIOGRAPHY: SPANNER BANNER
Spanner Banner, born Joseph Anthony Bonner at Rock Hall, St. Andrew has emerged as one of Jamaica’s most prominent artistes to date. His inspiration spurs from the legendary musician Bob Marley and his infamous Bonner sibblings Ã¢â‚¬ËœRichie Spice’, Ã¢â‚¬ËœSnatcha’, and Pliers of the legendary musical duo, Chaka Demus and Pliers.
He received his major Ã¢â‚¬Ëœbuss’ at an early age with his first single ‘Life Goes On’, produced by Winston Riley in the 1990’s. The song dominated the charts locally and internationally creating a precedent for other musicians as well as himself to follow. Other hit songs like, ‘Live and Learn’, ‘Michelle’, and ‘Tease me, Tease me’, subsequently covered by Chaka Demus and Pliers, soon followed. These songs made it to the top ten on the British Reggae Music Chart.
After the reeling success of his debut song, Spanner Banner was signed to Island Records. His debut album ‘Chill’, produced by Sly & Robbie, further cemented his mark on the Jamaican Reggae music scene as it attained international recognition. The album included the hits Ã¢â‚¬ËœWhat We Need Is Love’, ‘You Gotta Be’, ‘Universal Love’ and ‘Cheater’.
During his impressive career, Spanner worked with some of the most prominent producers in the industry including King Jammys, Jeremy Harding, Bobby Digital, and Clive Hunt. Spanner left Island Records in 1996, and ventured out to launch his own recording label, ‘Sweet Angel Productions’. It was at ‘Sweet Angel Productions’ that he released, ‘Lovers Story’ which dropped hit songs such as ‘Ladies Night’ – (featuring Grammy award winner, Sean Paul), and ‘Tears in the Rain’. His subsequent album ‘Real Love’ – released by Heart Beat Records and received much acclaim overseas. The Twin Brothers Record label later released his next album titled ‘Spanner Banner’s Greatest Hits’ in which covered over a decade of Spanner’s hits and included a few new tracks.
Spanner Banner next step was to commence extensive touring in North America, Europe, Africa, and the Caribbean. He however relocated to the United Kingdom performing and recording for a number of years. He later returned to Jamaica and began almost immediate work with his brother Richie Spice, Chuck Fender and Anthony Cruz under the Fifth Element Record label.
Recently, Spanner completed another widespread tour of the United States with Richie Spice in 2005 and 2006 under the management of 5th Element where he performed at ‘Reggae on the River’, ‘Westchester Reggae Fest, and the Elite Ark, New York, just to name a few. Not to be left out, Spanner continues to perform locally at Ã¢â‚¬ËœEast Fest, Ã¢â‚¬ËœRebel Salute’, Ã¢â‚¬ËœIsland Explosion’, Ã¢â‚¬ËœAll Spice Culture in the Hills’, Ã¢â‚¬ËœA St. Mary Mi Come From’, Ã¢â‚¬ËœGuinness Sting’, and also several other shows in the Caribbean.
His new album is proposed to be released soon and will feature some of Jamaica’s finest producers. The album includes songs like ‘One Love’ (done on the heavenly rhythm) – produced by Don Corleon, Ã¢â‚¬ËœAngels Around Me’ produced by No Doubt Records, and Ã¢â‚¬ËœBest Friends’ produced by Bonner Cornerstone Music. The video for the single, ‘One Love’, was produced by Endless so stay tuned to your local Entertainment stations.
Spanner Banner has proven himself to be a gifted and talented singer/ songwriter/ producer, and performer in the Reggae Industry for an impressive number of years. You can access his detailed profile on www.myspace.com/spannerbanner