MP3 Dread Ashanti - Rising
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12 MP3 Songs
WORLD: Reggae, WORLD: Island
From Boulder, Colorado to Hanalei, Kauai to Kadoma, Zimbabwe the name DREAD ASHANTI means only one thing; Powerful, innovative roots reggae! Since 1990 when DREAD ASHANTI first formed, they have been breaking the boundaries of race and culture with their unique sound and positive energies.
RISING, Dread Ashanti's debut album hit Hawai'i in the summer of 1992. The original seven-member ensemble put forth the Dread sound to the masses, the album being described by John Berger (Honolulu Star-Bulletin) as "One of the year's best local reggae albums [consisting of] well-written originals with solid rhythms and strong lyric hooks supporting Ital's engaging vocal performances".
Through the years 1992-1994, Dread Ashanti has undergone many personnel changes as members answered other callings. Pat Morley (bass) has continued his music career in Austin, Texas, and is now in Los Angeles. Arabella Harrison (vocals) performs with internationally acclaimed San Diego based band JE JUEN. Shawn Mosely (keyboards) is a recording engineer in LA, Boston, and currently in Hawaii, and continues in many different musical endeavors. Through a series of changes Dread Ashanti reached its present nine-person lineup. Veterans Ital (Lead Vocals), Ian Masterson (Guitar), Bryce K.M. Myers (Drums) and Poppa D (Percussion) continue to blend their unique mix. Zeke Paikuli (Bass) and John Tavares (Keys) round off this solid roots rhythm group. That funky-jazzy horn trio of Trumpet (Gary Nakano), Sax (Michael Cueva), Trombone (A. Bush) add just the right groove blend.
Now after opening for Steel Pulse three times, after being written up in newspapers worldwide, after many television appearances and videos, especially Robbie Naish's RIP Windsurfing Video (best windsurfing video ever!), after promotion by world renown surf companies such as MCD, H3O, Town&Country, Naish Hawaii, after constant airplay in Seattle, Tahiti, Guam, Oregon, Utah, Hawaii, Micronesia, Santa Cruz, Colorado, England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Germany, Norway, Russia, Finland, Sweden, (of course) Amsterdam, Zimbabwe, Namibia, South Africa, Central Africa, Somalia, GHANA (homeland of the Ashanti tribe!) and places unknown, the houses are constantly packed.
After a 3 years wait, on October 13, 1995, Dread Ashanti's long-anticipated second album, THE BEAUTY OF THE SEA was released. This album containing 11 original roots tracks, from the flowing Jah Light to the top-ten Hawaii hit Lover Lover to the ska dance of the Hungry Lion, debuts the present line-up and makes a definite statement of the positive direction that this band is following. Honolulu's John Berger called Dread Ashanti's, The Beauty of the Sea, "One of the year's best Hawaiian reggae albums."
Dread Ashanti continues to promote worldwide and tour when they can. The Hawaii Hempfest in July at Waimanalo Polo Fields on the Island of Oahu has been a great success for Anancy Music, Dread Ashanti and the people of Hawaii. Several thousand people in attendance each year have witnessed an all day music, volleyball and hemp awareness get-together with the results being a population who knows more and talks more openly about what a future of industrial hemp could do for the islands. The 1996 Hawaii Hempfest CD was released with all live tracks from Dread Ashanti, Red Session, Chilum, THC - The Hearticle Crew, Roots Revolt and FrogChild.
In 1998 and 1999 Dread Ashanti has continued to rock the local scene, packing houses like the New World Cafe, as well as the essential roots houses in town, Anna Bananna's and Jaron's in Kailua. The band is currently writing new music, forming new sounds and exploring this great world we live in. What with being on several upcoming compilation CDs, with members forming all kinds of musical offshoots and examining their own inner musics and with a live album in the making, who knows what will be happening next with DREAD ASHANTI.
A few of us have kids (or more kids in some cases), one of us got a master's degree in fine art, another became a pilot, JT has the East Side Wrecking Crew jamming in Kailua and beyond, Ital got deported back to Antigua, bummer, but there is still hope and 8 out of 10 former Dread Ashanti members are now in Hawaii, which could mean a possible reunion show or two, if we can find a vocalist who can pull Itals dynamic level of vocal ability. Now that brother Bryce is back in town we might get the live album finished off and support that with a few shows. Our crowd is keeping us alive and we love you for that. Rising and Beauty of the Sea are available once again.
To those in the Ashanti tribe, "ashanti" means "Come, I welcome you into my heart and into my home," but to outsiders who know not the strength of that fierce tribe it means "Tremble at the incantation of my name." As our percussionist, Poppa D, says, "Babylon take heed because Dread Ashanti has risen! Now it is time to move on to a new realm! On To Mount Zion!"
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