SiriusXM radio has been very kind to Island Head. Their reggae station, The Joint, was the first radio station in the world to play Island Head. Program Director Pat McKay, selected the song “So Much Trouble In The World” to be the unofficial single off the album “Punky Reggae Party”.
Pat McKay has very high praise for the band. She said; “Island Head is an important project to reggae. It’s always gr8 to have substantive, high art. This work contributes to reggae’s growth. Reminds others of what it really is and what is still possible. I feel so especially blessed to share this brilliant work with our audience.”
Dermot Hussey, the legendary radio personality, is also on The Joint reggae channel. Dermot said; “Island Head musicians, tastefully demonstrate that a fresh perspective can still be brought to Bob Marley music”.
Island Head are humbled and honored to have such luminaries of the reggae music world to offer such high praise.
You can go out and hear some Irish music on St. Patrick’s Day or you can do what they do in the Caribbean, jam with a reggae band!
Island Head will be performing at The Falcon in Marlboro, NY. Make your reservations early for Friday March 17, 2017. The band always packs this fantastic club. But, because it is St. Patrick’s Day we are expecting a sell-out performance. You will want to get there before the 8:00pm downbeat for dinner. The food is quite good!
Island Head played to a packed SRO crowd at The Falcon in Marlboro, NY this past Saturday night. The band featured Timmy Cappello on sax and lead vocals, Andy Bassford as well as reggae legend Mikey ‘Mao’ Chung on guitars, bandleader Billy Messinetti on drums, Jeff Ganz on bass, James K. Smith on trumpet (subbing for Don Harris) and Mitch Margold on keyboards (subbing for David Frank). Both James and Mitch have played with Island Head before so the reggae groove had the right pulse!
The band played their versions of classic Bob Marley songs as performed on their album “Punky Reggae Party” as heard on SiriusXM radio The Joint. Other songs performed included “Baby I Need Your Loving” by The Four Tops, “I Shall Be Released” by Bob Dylan and the classic “House of The Rising Sun”.
They surprised the audience with two new songs to the set. “Take Me To The River” was done uptempo to almost a ska beat. One of the most interesting arrangements was the band’s rendition of Richie Haven’s Woodstock classic “Freedom” to a soca-like groove. Timmy tore the house down with these two songs. Whew!!
Check back here at IslandHeadReggae.com for information about getting a copy of the live recording of the show.
Island Head’s next live gig is Saturday November 21, 2015 at a fantastic venue called The Falcon.
Island Head’s trumpet player Don Harris and bass player Neil Jason played The Falcon with Blues Brothers’ guitar player John Tropea. Island Head bandleader/ drummer Billy Messinetti attended the show and was very impressed with the club and the whole concept of what they have going on. Don and Billy had a conversation with owner Tony Falco. Tony said, “people say we don’t have enough reggae music or reggae bands in the club”. All agreed Island Head would be a great fit.
The band will have legendary guitarist Mikey “Mao” Chung in from Jamaica, keyboardist/producer David Frank is flying in from Los Angeles and guitarist Andy Bassford is returning that day from his tour with Jamaican Jazz pianist Monty Alexander.
Island Head will be playing their own versions of Bob Marley compositions, tracks from Jamaican Reggae Producer Clement “Coxsone” Dodd’s Studio One Rocksteady and Reggae classics. Island Head’s bass player Jeff Ganz is a student of these classics and the bass is the foundation of those grooves. The band will also throw in some American classics with a reggae feel sung by Saxophonist Timmy Cappello. Timmy had been touring the states appearing at “Mad Monster Parties”. These are “meet and greet” conventions for fans of vampire movies. Timmy performed the theme song “I Still Believe” in the vampire movie classic “The Lost Boys” and is well-known by fans of the movie.
Tony Falco is an avid supporter of great music and fine art. There is something going on at The Falcon almost every night. Tony finds very talented and interesting acts. Besides hosting live music you can find artwork from local painters hanging on the walls that Tony encourages his patrons to purchase. Some of the finest musicians in the world have sought out The Falcon to perform there. They have a large stage suitable for a small concert hall.
Come hungry because they offer a terrific menu, fine wine and beer selections. The restaurant supports farms that practice sustainable agriculture.
We will see you there on Nov 21. Doors open at 7PM.
Click here for more information about the show: SHOW LINK
The band Magic!, hailing from Totonto, Canada, brought reggae into the Billboard Hot 100’s number one spot with the reggae infused single “Rude”. I’m not one who usually can predict hit pop singles these days but, I have to say that the first time I heard it I knew this would be BIG! The song fuses contemporary reggae with dancehall and is certainly reminiscent of The Police. Congratulations to the band!
Sean Paul and Enrique Igleslas’ song “Bailando” is a Latin song with Sean’s reggae style vocals. It was very smart for these two artists to collaborate and bring together the Latin and reggae audiences. “Bailando” is also topping charts all over the world.
SOJA, the American reggae band from Virginia, currently has the number one reggae album on iTunes. “Amid The Noise and Haste” was produced by GRAMMY award winning Jamaican producer Supa Dups (Bruno Mars, Eminem, Rihanna, John Legend). The album includes collaborations with Michael Franti and Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley.
Other reggae albums released recently worth noting are Rebelution’s “Count Me In” and and Ziggy Marley’s “Fly Rasta”. Both albums include collaborations. “Count Me In” has songs featuring Collie Buddz and Don Carlos and “Fly Rasta” features U-Roy, Beezy Coleman and Cedella Marley.
“So Much Trouble in the World” has gotten the most airplay of any track on the album “Punky Reggae Party” by Island Head. Since it’s radio debut on SiriusXM in November 2012, that song has received the most attention and outsold the other songs on the album. SiriusXM Channel 42 “The Joint” has made “Trouble” a regular play on the station along with all the top reggae acts.
This week there has been a shift. Reggae fans are discovering the song “Reggae Island” and are showing their love by requesting plays on Spotify and buying it on iTunes. Yes, there are still music fans willing to pay $.99 for music they like.
Here are comments about the song from a couple of DJs:
“This track makes me feel Irie…Good stuff” – DJ Neza (international DJ)
“Instantly puts you by the beach with your toes in the sand and a drink in your hand!” DJ Chucky D
Island Head performed this past week for a mostly Jamaican audience in New York. They played extended versions of the entire “Punky Reggae Party” album along with some classic reggae music. Besides the Bob Marley covers the band usually does they jammed on tracks from a Studio One album entitled “Downbeat The Ruler”. The band selected “Darker Than Black” and “Swing Easy” by Soul Vendors, “Tunnel One”by Tommy McCook and “Heavy Rock” from Sound Dimension. The musicians took these grooves to new highs with guitar, keyboard, sax and trumpet solos.
This was the first gig where the Island Head musicians added some vocal songs to their set. Saxophonist Timmy Cappello displayed his vocal abilities on the classics “I Shall Be Released” (Bob Dylan) and “Baby I Need Your Loving” both covered by The Heptones. But, the vocal performance that brought the house down was Cappello’s version of “House of The Rising Sun”.
Island Head keyboardist, David Frank had a number one hit with his band The System called “Don’t Disturb This Groove”. The audience instantly recognized the signature keyboard riff of their reggae version.
The band’s live show is constantly evolving. Stay tuned for upcoming Island Head band performances.
Click the links below to see videos from the band’s performance at The Cutting Room in New York City.
“Punky Reggae Party” by Island Head band/musicians
Here is what Pat McKay, SiriusXM program director for channel 42 “The Joint” said; “Island Head is an important project to reggae. It’s always great to have substantive, high art. This work contributes to reggae’s growth. Reminds others of what it really is and what is still possible. I feel so especially blessed to share this brilliant work with our audience.”
“Inspired concept, great playing and a real feel for the music makes Island Head’s Punky Reggae Party a top quality, excellent release highly recommended to strengthen the heart and soothe the soul. A winner!“–Chuck Foster, host of Reggae Central on KPFK-LA, author of Roots Rock Reggae: An Oral History of Reggae Music From Ska To Dancehall (Billboard Books) and The Small Axe Guide To Rock Steady (Muzik Tree).
“Island Head musicians, tastefully demonstrate that a fresh perspective can still be brought to Bob Marley music.” Dermot Hussey, legendary reggae radio personality and author of “Bob Marley, Reggae King of The World”.
“I have heard a lot of Wailers over the years and Island Head are one of the few bands that have an original take on the music. It’s Island Head Hipreggaejazzrockvibe.” – Cableman Dan, host of “Reggae & World Rhythms” on WNTI-FM