Here in New York, it’s almost summer—a.k.a. the season of free outdoor concerts all day, everyday. The granddaddy of them all is SummerStage, the series that turns Central Park (and other parks around the city) into a showcase for musicians and performing artists from around the world.
We’re excited to announce that, this summer, LargeUp is becoming a part of this venerable NYC tradition for the very first time. That’s right, we, along with Federation Sound (celebrating their 15th anniversary) are bringing dancehall and reggae—Chronixx and Zincfence Redemption, Junior Reid, and the Rice & Peas crew—to Central Park Summerstage on July 26, 100% free. The LargeUp show is one of a series of SummerStage shows commemorating Okayplayer’s own 15th anniversary, featuring a ton of great artists, including Guyana’s Blood Orange.
Chronixx has been on our radar for a while now—he was our 2013 Artist to Watch, living up to that title with tunes like “Smile” and “Here Comes Trouble.” He’s continuing his ascent of the reggae ranks this year, with his recent Dread & Terrible EP, which he’s currently supporting with a European tour. You can see a clip of his performance last December at the Blue Note with jazz legends Monty Alexander and Ernest Ranglin below.
Junior Reid is a certified reggae legend (“One Blood,” anyone?) with serious hip-hop credentials, including collaborations with artists like The Game, Wu-Tang, Lil Wayne, Bun B, and even Mims (remember “This Is Why I’m Hot“?). The former lead singer of Black Uhuru cemented his status as one of the most important names in reggae With the “One Blood” in 1989, and has continued to put out great music and tour internationally since.
You all know that there’s no soundsystem as fit to bring the party to the park as LargeUp’s own Rice & Peas crew of Max Glazer, DJ Gravy, Orijahnal Vibez and Micro Don—they’ve already made our SXSW and WMC Winter Music Massive this year’s bashments to beat. To get a taste of how they get the outdoor festival vibe going, check out this video of their performance at last year’s Great Googa Mooga Festival in Prospect Park below—and mark your calendars, because July 26th is going to be even bigger!