Rototom Sunsplash 2012

Dedicated to Jamaica, its 50 years of independence and of Reggae music

On 18th August Marcia Griffiths, Kymani Marley and Andrew Tosh will offer a tribute concert to The Wailers to celebrate their origins. With this last announcement the program of the festival’s nineteenth edition is complete.

With the motto “Jamaica Special, Celebrating 50 Years of Reggae Music”, Rototom will also welcome one of the fathers of Ska, Derrick Morgan and Reggae stars of the likes Barrington Levy, Steel Pulse and Michael Rose alongside legendary musicians such as Sly & Robbie, Ernest Ranglin, Monty Alexander or Dean Frazer.

The largest Reggae festival in Europe presents its Main Stage daily programme including international headliners Calle 13, Alpha Blondy, Cultura Profética, Alborosie & Friends and many more.

Rototom 2012 will host a free pre-festival event on the streets of Benicàssim on August 15th. Jamaican artists Mighty Diamonds, Linval Thompson and Pablo Moses will perform on that night.

Rototom Sunsplash 2012 will be dedicated to Jamaica on the 50th anniversary of its independence, as well as to the birth of Reggae music. In joining the celebrations taking place internationally under the motto Jamaica Special. Celebrating 50 Years of Reggae Music, the festival’s programme features various artists and guests from Jamaica on all the stages as well as in the Reggae University, with the intention honour their origins. Amongst them, Marcia Griffiths, Kymani Marley and Andrew Tosh, who will give a special tribute concert to The Wailers on 18th August; this last announcement closes the programme of the nineteenth edition of Rototom. The largest Reggae festival in Europe will be held at Benicàssim’s Festivals Grounds from August 16th to 22nd. This year a free pre-festival event will be offered to welcome the visitors. It will take place on the streets of the village on the day before the festival’s beginning, on Wednesday 15th August, and it will include several shows during the evening and the high class performances of Mighty Diamonds, Linval Thompson and Pablo Moses during the night.

The different phases and styles of half a century of Jamaican music will be represented on the Main Stage of Rototom 2012. Starting with Derrick Morgan, considered one of “fathers” and founders of Ska – the first genuine Jamaican style – and author of “Forward March”, song which became the soundtrack of the independence of the Caribbean island in 1962. Another style that had a strong influence in the isle of Reggae is jazz, which will be represented on stage by the special ensemble formed by Monty Alexander, Ernest Ranglin, Sly & Robbie and Bitty McLean, an exclusive concert in Spain.

The Roots Reggae period, its creativity and social demands, will be represented by Max Romeo, Wailing Souls, Congos and Steel Pulse. For the latter this will be also one of their few concerts in Spain. In the same way, the programme will present veteran legends who

have represented a reference throughout various moments of the history of reggae, from the Roots period to more recent trends; one example is Beres Hammond, but also Johnny Osbourne, Barrington Levy and Michael Rose, legendary singer of Black Uhuru. Just in case all this were not enough, the concerts of Wailing Souls and Barrington Levy in Benicàssim will be their only dates in Spain this summer. Morgan Heritage, made up of five Jamaican brothers raised in New York, who became one of the best Roots Reggae bands, will also be at Rototom, after their recent reunion.

Dancehall style will welcome at Rototom 2012 one of its eternal major exponents, Beenie Man, an artist who has brought the sound of the ghetto to the international scene. The present of Jamaican music will be represented by artists Tarrus Riley, Etana, Raging Fyah, Protoje, Jah Mason and C-Sharp among others.

In the Rototom Sunsplash 2012 programme, there will also be a relevant presence of international stars, which have been strongly influenced by Jamaican music. The most obvious is the great referent of African Reggae, Alpha Blondy; the Puerto-Rican Cultura Profética, at their first show in Spain and only date in Europe this summer; the Italian Alborosie, who will offer an exclusive concert accompanied by various friends and collaborators; also from the UK, together with their special guests, the dub ensemble Zion Train, who won the ‘Jamaican Reggae Grammy” in 2007 for ‘Best Dub Recording’.

On the other hand, the festival will also count with bands that offer a broader interpretation of the genre with Reggae and Ska fusion elements, as the also Puerto-Ricans Calle 13, who will be closing their European tour precisely in the special concert in Benicàssim; the Italians Giuliano Palma & The Bluebeaters will be in Spain for the first time; Obrint Pas will represent the Valencian scene; coming closer to Rumba, Funk and Swing, the show of Barcelona based band Muchachito Bombo Infierno with Jairo Perera, will include the participation of artist Santos Veracruz, who will be painting one of his murales live on stage. To complete the programme straight from Rototom Reggae Contest that has celebrated its tenth edition, we will have the winners of the European selections, Serbian Irie FM, as well as the winners for South America, Argentinian band Los Dubies featuring the Chilean Sing-jay Tiano Bless.

The early Reggae classics

Half a century ago the most important band in the history of Reggae was created, The Wailers, part of which were Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer, among others. In order to celebrate this, Marcia Griffiths – the lady of Reggae and background vocalist of the Wailers during the 70s – alongside Kymani Marley and Andrew Tosh – sons of two of the band’s leading members – will share the stage at Rototom 2012. They will perform Reggae classics, that have marked the history of Jamaican music like “Stir It Up”, “Get Up, Stand Up” or “I Shot The Sheriff”, their voices sounding very close to the original ones from five decades ago, when Marley & co. began to tune up their vocal harmonies in a yard in Trenchtown, the ghetto of Kingston where everything started, before their first hits with Studio One.

Reggae University-Jamaica 50: Solidarity exhibition for the Alpha Boys School

Rototom Sunsplash 2012 will also focus the programme of the Reggae University to the 50th anniversary of the independence of Jamaica from the music point of view, with the aim of underlining its importance in the development of the national identity during this past half century. Many artists have taken part to the sessions that the festival has been organizing for the past 5 years; once again this year again, together with artists, we will have the pleasure to listen to university professors, writers, film directors…

The purpose is talking, discussing and analyzing the different aspects of Reggae music and culture, counting with the participation of the audience. Among other prominent names, we can confirm the presence of Clive Chin: before his session at the Ska Club, he will give his contribution to the Reggae University, by sharing his noteworthy experience with the main characters of the golden age of Reggae, considering that during the early 70s he has a primary role in the renewal of Studio 17 recording studios, used in various occasions by The Wailers, and he also produced albums for artists such as Dennis Brown.

The Reggae University will also host the exhibition of 50 years of reggae music through the

posters of graphic designer Michael “Freestyle” Thompson. The profits of the sales of the posters (during the festival or through the website) will be donated to the Alpha Boys School, reformatory established in Kingston in the XIX century, with the music as its main protagonist in the education of its students. The organization has had a key role in the emergence and evolution of Reggae, forming great musicians such as Desmond Dekker, Rico Rodriguez of the Skatalites or Ernest Ranglin and Johnny Osbourne, the last two of which appear in the programme of Rototom 2012. During the festival, the Reggae University Camp will also host meetings organized by Asociación Cultural Reggae (ACR) and House of Rastafari, as well as the presentation of books and readings conducted by their own authors, together with the screenings of films and documentaries, among other activities.

-Main Stage day by day: Thursday 16: Morgan Heritage, Derrick Morgan, Beres Hammond, Sly & Robbie + Monty

Alexander + Ernest Ranglin ft. Bitty McLean. Friday 17: Alborosie & Friends, Michael Rose, Tanya Stephens and the winners of the

Latin Reggae Contest: Los Dubies ft. Tiano Bless.

Saturday 18: Marcia Griffiths ft. Kymani Marley & Andrew Tosh, Raging Fyah, Giuliano Palma & The Bluebeaters, Freddy McGregor ft. Chino and the winners of the European Reggae Contest: Irie FM.

Sunday 19: Steel Pulse, Barrington Levi, Protoje, Jah Mason, Muchachito Bombo Infierno.

Monday 20: Cultura Profética, Beenie Man, Max Romeo, The Congos.

Tuesday 21: Calle 13, Tarrus Riley ft. Dean Frazer, Johnny Osbourne, C-Sharp.

Wednesday 22: Alpha Blondy, Etana, Wailing Souls, Obrint Pas, Zion Train ft. Jazzmin Tutum, Sis Bethsabee & Fyah Brass.

Ticket sales

The ticket presales to attend the seven days of concerts and activities of the nineteenth edition of Rototom continues, the current price being 160€ until Tuesday 10th July (195€ with camping), which represents an average cost of just 22€ per day. The multi-day tickets cost between 60€ and 150€. The single day tickets will be sold at the festival’s gate for 30€.

Free entry for children under 12 and elders over 65, as well as disabled people. For those registered and living in Benicàssim, the tickets will have a special price of 15€ per day or 100€ for the 7 days.