Show Details: When: Thursday, December 28rd Time: 11:30pm Ages: all ages Price: $17-$120 Where: Irving Plaza 17 Irving Pl, New York, NY 10003 Tickets Event Page
Few artists have left a lasting impression on live audiences like GRAMMY-nominated superstar Matisyahu and Common Kings. While Matisyahu’s breakthrough Live at Stubb’s series exhibits electric beatboxing and heady improvised dub jams, Common Kings have continually dropped jaws to the floor with a live show that has earned them opening spots for the likes of chart topping heavyweights Justin Timberlake, 5th Harmony, Meghan Trainor, Sean Paul, and Cee Lo Green in recent years, proving their wide-reaching appeal across genres and continents. With fall’s arrival, the groups have announced the next chapter of their touring career, the Broken Crowns Tour. The tour will see two of the most exciting acts on the planet teaming up for a three-month long run of shows across North America playing small and large markets alike.
Less than a year after releasing Lost in Paradise to the #1 spot on the Billboard Reggae Chart and #2 on Billboard’s trendsetting Heatseekers Chart, Common Kings have announced the release of a new single, “Cali Girl,” which premiered today at Mass Appeal. “Cali Girl” features the soothing influence of Don Corleon, the legendary producer known for his works with heavyweights Rihanna, Shaggy, Sean Paul, and Bounty Killa. The single comes on the heels of their recent tour announcement, a three-month run with Matisyahu and Orphan.
This past week we were able to catch up with the Common Kings as they came through New York City and the Gramercy Theatre on The Hits & Mrs. Tour. We sat down before the show with lead singer JR King, guitarist Taumata “Mata” Grey, bassist Ivan Kirimaua and drummer Jerome Taito. Here is what they had to say. Reggae In NYC (RN) Common Kings (CK) RN: You have done some amazing tours with Justin Timberlake, Soja, Rebelution, just to name a few, how has it been headlining this tour? CK: We have done headline tours before, but this one is special because it’s the first time on the East Coast. Usually, we just hit the southern states. Overall the tour has been great all around, every show we’ve had good turnout. RN: What have been some of the memorable moments so far? CK: D.C. was crazy. They showed a lot of love. It was probably because of the venue, it had low ceilings so everyone was just packed in there at the Rock and Roll Hotel. It’s a big time, well-known, punk rock venue, but it was dope. The crowd was live. RN: Last time you were here were you at The Gramercy? CK: We were supposed to, but it got snowed out. It was our first show that ever got cancelled. But this time we brought the Cali weather.
The Common Kings came to NYC last year, but the winter put an end to the show before it even started. A blizzard hit and the show was snowed out. Having missed them last year, I had to be there this time around and it seems NYC was finally ready. Nothing could be the more perfect setting then a 70 degree March Wednesday evening, putting everyone in a good mood and ready for a great show. Make sure you check back for the full interview we had with them before this show.
The show started with a set by local Long Island band Oogee Wawa. At 7:00pm there is usually an empty house, with stragglers grabbing beers, close friends and family and a few diehard fans. But Oogee Wawa is no normal band. They opened their set to an almost full house. After touring extensively, they have built up a large fan base who made sure they were well represented here in their home town. With upbeat tracks like Tips and more somber numbers like Jump Off they set the tone for the night. Oogee Wawa’s awesome mix of reggae, rock and hip hop showed why they have such a big local fan base and have been honored with opening for Steel Pulse when they come to town. I can’t wait for their next show.
Following a rocking opening set, Tomorrow Bad Seeds took the stage. They have been performing with Common Kings throughout this tour and this was my first opportunity to see them live. As soon as they started, the crowd was jumping, another group with loyal fans, no matter what city they are in. After a few songs to fire up the crowd, they paused to say, “I know it’s not legal here…” encouraging the crowd to fire up a spliff as they rocked a great rendition of Vices.