Anthony B (born Keith Anthony Blair) is the living personification of Afrikan consciousness in Reggae. His single “Nah Vote Again” was a major factor in making the Jamaican elections of Thursday, December 18, 1997, the most peaceful one since the insidious cancer of gun violence was introduced in West and Central Kingston, prior to the elections of 1967. Like his hero,
Peter Tosh , the most revolutionary of the Wailing Wailers, he is an uncompromising Pan Afrikanist, in the tradition of Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Jamaica’s first national hero and the founder and leader of the largest Afrikan organization ever, the Universal Negro Improvement Association and Afrikan Communities League, U.N.I.A. and A.C.L.
The traditional route of most Afrikan singers is via the church, and Anthony B is no exception. Growing up in Clarks Town in the parish of Trelawny (a parish noted for the heroic Afrikan freedom fighters, the Maroons, who defeated the English military), his Revivalist grandmother and Seventh Day Adventist mother immersed him in the singing, call and response, and clapping mechanics of rural Jamaica. In this rural environment that Afrikan culture is best found and preserved in Jamaica, not Kingston nor urban St. Andrew. Like Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, The Maytals, Justin Hinds & The Dominoes, Twinkle Brothers , the Clarendonians and countless other Jamaican stars, Anthony B honed his vocal skills in the church and school choirs and then entered the secular world. His deejaying debut was on the local sound system Shaggy Hi-Power. Moving to Portmore in the parish of St. Catharine in 1988, the musically keen teen hooked up with other aspiring teenage deejays, Determine, Mega Banton, Ricky General and Terror Fabulous on Lovers Choice Sound. Other Portmore acts that he knew or flexed with were Little Devon, Agony Polish, Cobra, Baby Wayne, Grindsman, Ronnie Thwaites, Professor Nuts, and others. He steadfastly refused to deejay girl lyrics when they were ruling the roost in the early nineties.
Patience is a virtue and good things come to those who wait. In combination with Little Devon (the Half Pint sound-a-like singer) he made his debut single “The Living is Hard” on the Wizard label in 1993. Anthony B tried King Jammy’s Black Scorpio and other studio producers after but none saw fit to help plant musical corn of the budding genius. Undeterred he was looking for a break at Black Scorpio studio one day when Little Devon introduced him to Afrocentric producer of Garnett “Mama Africa” Silk fame, Richard “Bello” Bell of Star Trail Label fame. The rest is history or blackstory!
Recordings and releases followed quickly and his first hit was “Repentance Time”. The bigger hits “Fire pon Rome”, “Rumour” and “Raid di Barn” followed in quick pursuit and his landmark debut album Real Revolutionary was released to popular acclaim in 1996. Late 1997 his second worldwide album ” Universal Struggle ” was released and again excellence is consistent. The album is one of the best in Reggae for 1997 and 1998. Lyrically, thematically, and rhythmically versatile, the album encapsulates Afrikan consciousness and the Peter Tosh-like deliveries and clarity of vocals are indelibly present throughout. He was the most devastating deejay at Reggae Summits 1997, at Catherine Hall in Montego Bay, Jamaica – a consummate performer. Anthony B, indeed another Reggae king in full musical swing!!
Soul Majestic is said to be one of North America’s most powerful and promising reggae acts in years. Recently mentioned in The Beat Magazine, writer and radio DJ, Chuck Foster hailed them as Ã¢â‚¬Å“poised to inherit the top US Reggae band mantle previously held by Blue Riddim and Inka InkaÃ¢â‚¬Â. The diversity in their range of fans demonstrates their ability to move the most hard-core reggae enthusiasts as well as a wider, more universal audience, and keep them dancing from start to finish. Influenced by old school Studio One style, conscious roots, dub, and cultural dance hall, the band takes what they have learned from their reggae heroes and funnels it into a unique sound all their own.
Soul Majestic achieves this authenticity with their talented combination of players featuring bass and drums, keyboard/organ, lead and rhythm guitar, percussion and Nyahbingi drums. With charismatic vocalist Eric-I as the band’s main front person and primary songwriter, the band keeps things fresh by featuring Soul Majestic’s other vocal talents as well. They incorporate a strong female presence with Oriana and Diyay on leads and collaborations for a handful of tunes, and a dancehall edge with Bay Area freestyle artist Luv Fyah stepping up to chant between Eric’s vocal stylings. Lush harmonies from the band’s two soul sisters, tight rhythm section, and energetic drum and bass vibes lend the perfect backdrop to this dynamic vocal blend. With emphasis on the music’s power to convey a message, Soul Majestic’s lyrics present a clear understanding of the human condition and address pertinent political issues.
They have played at several prominent reggae and world music festivals including the 2004 Reggae on the River Festival, the 2003 Sierra Nevada World Music Festival, the 2004 and 2005 Bob Marley Day Festivals, 2002 and 2005 Monterey Bay Reggae Festivals, and the 2003 Earthdance Festival. In March and April of 2004 the band recorded their much-anticipated sophomore album ” Until That Day ” in Jamaica at the infamous Tuff Gong Studio, run by Bob Marley’s family. They had the honor of working with legendary artists/producers Sly and Robbie, as well as vocal artist Anthony B, and percussion veterans Sticky Thompson and Bongo Herman. So check out the new album ” Until That Day” and visit www.soulmajestic.com to find out where they’re playing next.
Nov. 9 – Slims Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 333 11th St San Francisco, CA
Nov. 10 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ WOW Hall Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 291 West 8th Ave. Eugene, Oregon
Nov. 11 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Crystal Ballroom Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 1332 W. Burnside Portland, OR
Nov. 12 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Studio Seven Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 110 S. Horton St. Seattle, WA
Nov. 13 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Night Light Lounge Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 211 East Chestnut St., Bellingham, WA
Nov. 14 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ The Vault Nightclub Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 425 Franklin St Se Olympia, WA
Nov. 15 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ The Domino Room Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 51 Greenwood Ave Bend, OR
Nov. 16 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Indigo Bar & Lounge Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Eureka, CA
Nov. 17 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Santa Cruz Vet’s Hall – 846 Front Street, Santa Cruz, CA
Nov. 18 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Mystic Theater Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 23 N Petaluma Blvd., Petaluma, CA
Nov. 19 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ TBA
Nov. 20 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Century Club Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 10131 Constellation Blvd Los Angeles, CA
Nov. 21 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Belly Up Tavern Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 143 S Cedros Ave Solana Beach, CA
Nov. 22 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ The Coach House Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 33157 Camino Capistrano San Juan Capistrano CA
For more show info go to www.soulmajestic.com
For press inquires, contact Amy Shapas of So You Can at 831-479-0711 or email@example.com
So You Can