Earth Day is celebrated in Balboa Park each year, but the multicultural celebration at the WorldBeat Center is usually what drives thousands to this event. Sure, there are endless eco-friendly workshops, demonstrations and information booths, but let’s be honest: It's the free music that attracts the attendees.
Closing out this year’s festival is reggae artist Fidel Nadal, a former member of the popular Todos Tus Muertos band from Argentina. The Afro-Argentinian moved away from reggae-punk fusion to score his hit, “International Love.” Roots reggae became Nadal’s passion and focus. Jamaican’s reggae dub master The Scientist (Hopeton Brown) will grace us with his presence and perhaps perform tracks from the albums Pac-Men, Space Invaders and Vampires. Scientist is a protégé of reggae legend King Tubby, who is one of the founders of dub music.
Shoreline Rootz will finish off the local reggae talent on the homegrown lineup. Scotty Clayton and crew have an electric live performance and are still thriving off their self-titled EP. My personal favorite song on the EP is “Vanity,” a collage of reggae, rock and bluesy tones. E.N Young, of the very talented Stranger band will perform a solo dub performance. Young is currently booking shows behind his new album, Luck & Chance No More, featuring “I Know It’s True” and “Imagine Peace.” Young produced, mixed and wrote the eight original roots reggae tracks and then created dub versions of each song.
Rounding out the lineup is the Quinto Sol, Nano Bravo, Roots Covenant, Bredren and Jaam Kwest, who will perform at the annual Reggae De Mayo at the Belly Up on May 5. Piracy will perform for the first time at the festival -- she’s making waves on the local reggae scene. It’s refreshing to see a female artist enter the lion’s den.
The festival starts at 11 a.m. and usually wraps up by 8 p.m. For more information, click here.