This past week B.B. King’s was blessed with an amazing show put on by the royal family of reggae music, Morgan Heritage. For those who have been out of the scene for the past few months, Morgan Heritage was just awarded with the Grammy for Best Reggae Album, a well-deserved honor for their latest album, Strictly Roots. This family band made their return to their hometown of NYC to celebrate with all of us at BB King’s.
The show kicked off with great reggae vibes supplied by Synpa Movements. As the venue began to fill up, Blackalicous took the stage. The mix of an lyrical rapper opening for a roots reggae band seemed strange at first, but the audience showed their love, rapping along with Gift of Gab and Latryx Lateef as Chief Xcel laid the beats, rolling through new tracks and classic hits. They ended their set with a fast paced freestyle session and the amazing Alphabet Aerobics.
Following Blackalicious, Jamere Morgan hit the stage. By this point the crowd had filled in, ordered their drinks and were ready for some of the roots reggae they had come to see. Jamere serenaded the crowd with his new singles, kicking off the family vibe and ending with a strong version of Neighborhood Girl. This will be an artist to watch as his career grows.
Morgan Heritage hit the stage strong, shouting out their hometown of NYC, specifically Brooklyn. They worked their way through the new Strictly Roots album with the title track and others, blazing the Rockers vibe that the packed BB King’s club had come to see. As the great band that they are, they did not focus solely on new material, but took us back with some of their classic tacks, performing a beautiful version of Down By The River and Don’t Haffi Dread, that had the whole crowd singing along and swaying from side to side.
As the true ambassadors to reggae music that they are, Morgan Heritage took the time to share their stage with some of the other great talents in NYC. Bringing Laza Morgan to the stage who hyped the crowd with covers of Dancehall classics. Morgan Heritage continued, song after song, message after message sharing the importance of One People and the depth of reggae music.
As is usually the case with great performers they save a surprise for their local fans. With the show nearing its end, they spoke about how proud they were to have won the Grammy award and that “this man” was one of the first to call and congratulate them. With no warning, Tarrus Riley burst onto the stage, sending the crowd into a fury, as he joined the show, singing his own dub plate dedicated to Morgan Heritage. It was a great moment to see the talent and friendship on stage. True embodiment of reggae music and one love. It was a blessing to be at the show and I hope you were able to be there as well. Make sure you join our mailing list, so you never miss a show like this.
Click Here to see all the photos.