Reggae in the Desert, one of the most successful music festivals in southern Nevada, continues to spotlight internationally known acts. The two-day music festival, in its 12th year, will take place on Saturday, June 15 and Sunday, June 16 from noon until 11 p.m. at the Clark County Amphitheater, 500 S. Grand Central Parkway (Pictured: Luciano).
Steel Pulse, Luciano, Capleton, Marcia Griffiths and The Green headline this year’s impressive lineup.
Doors open at noon and the event concludes at 11 p.m. General two-day admission tickets are $60 and on sale now. Individual tickets are $35 in advance and $40 day of show, and go on sale Monday, April 22. VIP two-day packages are $120 and include: an event t-shirt, event poster, artist meet n greet, air conditioned VIP Lounge with free wine tasting. Only cash is accepted at the door for tickets on the day of the show. Children ages five (5) or younger are free. All seats are general admission and available on a first-come, first served basis. To purchase tickets, visit www.ticketfly.com. For a complete list of performance times and additional information, visit the event website at www.reggaeinthedesert.com.
Steel Pulse, one of Britain’s greatest reggae bands, started out playing authentic roots reggae with a bit of jazz and Latin music, eventually adding in a R&B sound. Steel Pulse’s 1978 debut album Handsworth Revolution is regarded by critics as a landmark of British reggae. The group began to gain commercial success in not only the reggae scene, but the punk scene as well. 1979’s Tribute to the Martyrs followed, which featured two singles “Sound System” and “Babylon Makes the Rules.” Then came 1982’s True Democracy and 1984’s Earth Crisis, and after Steel Pulse’s persistent attempt to establish themselves in the American market, they earned a Grammy for Best Reggae Album with 1986’s Babylon the Bandit. In 1993, the group performed at Bill Clinton’s inaugural celebration, becoming the first reggae band to appear at such an event. Another Grammy nomination later came with Rage and Fury in 1997. Since then, Steel Pulse has released 11 studio albums, and their tough-minded sound has paved the way for contemporary trends that include touches of dancehall and hip-hop.
Luciano is a Jamaican roots reggae artist who combines his love of God and beauty into a soulful blend of rock and R&B style reggae. Born Jepther McClymont, he began showing off his talents by singing in church before moving to Kingston to pursue a professional singing career. Luciano released his first album Moving Up in 1993 and scored a #1 UK reggae hit called “Shake It Up Tonight” the same year. Soon after, the singer’s critically acclaimed 1995 album Where There Is Life established him in the reggae scene, with hits like “It’s Me Again Jah” and “Who Could It Be.” Luciano later earned his enduring nickname ‘The Messenger’ after releasing Messenger in 1997. A nomination for Best Reggae Album at the 2002 Grammy Awards later came for the 2001 album A New Day. The singer released more albums including 2002’s Serve Jah and 2006’s Child of a King, which scored the Jamaican hit “Remember When.” Luciano was recognized in 2007 for his contributions to reggae music and was awarded the Order of Distinction in the rank of Officer. With more than 30 albums recorded, the prolific artist and activist continues to inspire fans, promoting consciousness through his lyrics.
Capleton influenced dancehall’s return to reggae tradition. The Jamaican artist, sometimes referred to as King Shango, began his pursuit as a dancehall deejay at the age of 18. Capleton began working with major producer Philip “Fatis” Burrell in 1989, and his first single “Bumbo Red” was a huge word-of-mouth hit that gave him international exposure. In 1990, Capleton made a well-received appearance at the Reggae Sunsplash Festival and issued popular singles such as “Number One Pon the Look Good Chart” and “Lotion Man.” They were followed with the release of the notable Double Trouble in 1992. By that time, Capleton’s distinct cultural consciousness was becoming clear in his work, especially in his landmark hit single “Alms House” in 1993. As Capleton was coming to his own, he scored more signature hits with “Everybody Needs Somebody,” “Cold Blooded Murderer” and “Buggering,” all from the 1994 album Good So. The singer’s success eventually caught the attention of American major label Def Jam, who helped release his 1995’s Prophecy, making Capleton a crossover success on the rap and dance singles charts. Capleton later released One Mission in 1999 and More Fire, which contained his biggest hits to date like “Jah Jah City,” “Who Dem?” and “Good in Her Clothes.” Even more hits followed with 2002’s Still Blazin, and since then, Capleton has become more rootsier with his music than ever.
Marcia Griffiths, the “Queen of Reggae,” gained success early on with hits like “Truly,” “Melody Life” and “Feel Like Jumping.” Aside from being a solo artist, Griffiths worked with Bob Andy in the group Bob and Marcia from 1970-1974, before becoming a member of the I Threes, a background group that performed with Bob Marley & the Wailers. Griffiths continued to record as a solo artist, working with producers such as Sonia Pottinger and Joseph Hoo Kim. The singer delivered more hit songs like “The First Time I Saw Your Face” and “Sweet Bitter Love” from the 1974 album Play Me Sweet And Nice, as well as the reggae classic “Steppin’ Out Of Babylon” from 1979’s Steppin’. Fifteen albums later, Griffiths is still most known for her recording of the Bunny Wailer song “Electric Boogie,” released in 1976 and re-released in 1989, that made the Electric Slide an international dance craze. The single rated well on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming the highest-selling single by a female Reggae singer of all time. With a career spanning 40 years to date, Griffiths has worked her way up to become the Jamaican music industry’s empress of reggae.
The Green, formed in 2009 on Oahu, Hawaii, blends sounds of dub-heavy roots reggae, rock, pop and R&B with traditional Hawaiian vibes. The band’s self titled debut album was released in 2010, with the single “Love I” becoming a breakthrough single on Hawaiian radio. The album also set a Billboard Reggae Chart record, remaining on the chart for more than 69 straight weeks. The Green was also named iTunes Best Reggae Album of 2010 and was #9 on the 2010 Billboard’s Year End Reggae Chart, alongside Bob Marley. The Green’s 2011 sophomore release, Ways & Means, proved to be continuing success, spending four weeks at #1 on the Billboard’s Reggae Chart and winning Best Reggae Album at Hawaii’s 2011 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards. In 2012, the band performed 41 dates at Vans Warped tour and was nominated for numerous categories in the International Reggae And World Music Awards. With their rapid success, The Green has put themselves on the forefront of Hawaii’s thriving reggae scene.
Other acts include Inner Circle, Daniel Marley, Reggae Angels, Wailing Souls, Pure Roots and Da Soulution.
RV parking will be available for the weekend @ $75 with no hook ups. Blankets for lawn seating are permitted as well as one unopened/factory sealed bottle of water per person. Vendors in the Caribbean Islands Vendor Village will have Caribbean-style items, exhibits, food and beverages, as well as other fare. Domestic and imported beers will be available. ATMs are now available on site.