Saturday, May 18, 2013

SOJA @ Webster Hall

SOJA; Nahko & Medicine for the People; Los Rakas
@ Webster Hall
New York, NY - May 17, 2013

What was I doing here? A friend with a big reggae flavor (see previous Matisyahu write-up) wanted some company so I obliged. I like the good classic reggae and ska of times gone by so this was not a major emotional sacrifice. Apart from the very white crowd throwing gang signs and gun gestures during the opening rap act who were about as threatening as tulips, there wasn't even much to be quizzical about. Major headliner SOJA - always struck by immensity of an act I've never heard before - seem to be the Coldplay of modern reggae and that's not meant to be an insult. Even being white boys with dreads didn't gross me out like it used to. Nahko & Medicine for the People are a straight up, emotions on the naked shirtless sleeve reggae from Hawaii, which makes for a conducive match of sounds. Talented musicians, nice hooks, California influenced, even the political messages were easy to digest. Openers Los Rakas were pleasant hispanic and african-american reggae rappers demonstrating the multicultural appeal of that sound made wonderful by the Dekkers and Drummonds and Marleys and Toshes of the world.


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