Rootz Underground’s recent performance at New York's BB King along with Gregory Isaacs is proof that the popularity of "roots music," is still very vibrant in the Jamaican Music Industry as set by veterans Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Burning Spears.
After a sample listen of their debut album Movements released on the Riverstone Records/Mystic Urchin Muzik labels it becomes evident that this band has tremendous potential.
Rootz Underground's unique brand of "Rasta" music began in 2000 when the band members who are all highly inspired by the most high without formal training from prominent music schools, lives crossed paths.
During the first four years, the band worked on materials in terms of song writing and developing arrangements and rehearsing. Their first big was a slot on the "local artist" stage at Air Jamaica's Jazz and Blues festival.
"The first year we played it was great, because we were like the dark horse and no-one knew about us," said Stevie. "The stage was chucked away over by the food court [and] it just so happened that there was a problem on the big stage and everyone decided to come and eat right at the time that we were about to play."
The band's popularity had grown so much that when Air J event sponsor David Smith invited them to play at his VIP tent last year, their fans made a point of not being denied.
The Underground's first stop after that was South Beach, Florida. From there, they played in Havana, Bahamas, Nassau, Antigua, St. Lucia, Cayman Islands and the United States. Their recent U.S. tour brought them to Chicago, Cincinatti, Columbus and Ann Arbor Michigan, DC and the South by Southwest concert held in Austin, Texas.
"We are in NY tonight for the first time which is a great joy," Son, Son commented. "We deh pon di road heavy. We gettin' fi know each other," Stevie added (laughing).
In terms of audience response "the crowd has been relating nicely and of course because we are touring with cool ruler (Gregory Isaacs) a lot of fans who might not have necessarily known about us have actually had the opportunity to come see us cause they come to see Gregory and so far we've sold a lot of CDs made a lot of friends and a lot of fans.
They say that they try to be as open hearted as possible before they get on stage because the real connection is not just the sound they make it's the spiritual connection with the fans which they say they feed off. "It gives us energy for the road tomorrow as well as it gives the people and the fans that power to take it out to the road and into their office and whatever them do tomorrow too," S.C.U.B.I.E. said.
Movements, the 19 track debut album of original songs by Rootz Underground, was released on March 4th. Distributed by Ryko, Movements is available for download from services including Rhapsody or the disc can be purchased at major retailers including Borders, Best Buy and FYE. Must hear tracks include Victims of a System, Time is an Illusion and Hammer produced by Rory of Stone Love Movements.
Source: Where Itz At Magazine