Reggae on the River is one of the world’s best and longest-running reggae festivals, and a Northern California institution. Since 1984, fest organizers the Mateel Community Centre have brought reggae’s brightest talents to Humboldt County’s Eel River, combining music, culture and camping to create one of the last truly independent music events of its size and scope — a truly unique experience that’s kept music lovers from far and wide coming back year after year.
The 33rd annual Reggae on the River festival is set for this August 3rd through 6th, with a lineup that includes Sly & Robbie, Marcia Griffiths, Judy Mowatt, Cherine Anderson, Slightly Stoopid, Ken Boothe, Culture, J Boog, Kabaka Pyramid, Walshy Fire (of Major Lazer), Warrior King, Assassin (aka Agent Sasco), Perfect Giddimani, Lutan Fyah and Winston “Flames” Jarrett, among others.
As we count down the days to one of our favorite summer festivals — see our full summer ’17 guide here — we’ve compiled a playlist featuring some of our favorite tunes by the featured artists at this year’s Reggae on the River. From the classic rub-a-dub sounds of Sly & Robbie’s “Unmetered Taxi” to Kabaka Pyramid’s fiery modern reggae anthem “Well Done,” these selections offer a taste of what to expect at Reggae on the River’s 33rd edition, and a convincing case for a trip out to Humboldt come August. For a deeper look at the fest and classic photos from years past, be sure to read our history of Reggae on the River from 2014’s 30th anniversary.