Easy Star All-Stars are back with their 12-track reinvention of The Beatles‘ classic Lonely Hearts Club Band album:Lonely Hearts Dub Band follows Easy Star Allstars 2 earlier chart-topping dub albums: 2003’s Dub Side of the Moon (a dub reggae tribute to Pink Floyd’s psychadelic rock concept album Dark Side of the Moon) and 2006’s Radiodread (a dub version of Radiohead’s OK Computer, another concept album). Both of the previous album were subjects of critical acclaim: Pitchfork called Dub Side of the Moon a “smashing success” and Rolling Stone magazine noted that Radiodread was “again impressive”. Dub Side of the Moon lived on Billboard’s Top Reggae Chart for over 5 years, becoming one of the most successful modern reggae albums, and Radiodread continued to impress with 18 months on the same reggae chart. After the dub reggae band’s first 2 releases, The Beatles classic was an obvious next step. (pull)Easy Star All Stars cofounder and musical director Michael Goldwasser explained that the group has “focused on re-envisioning concept albums as reggae and it’s really important that the source material works as a whole and is not just a collection of songs. So, what better to take on next than the mother of all concept albums?”(/pull) Other members of the Easy Star All Stars collective also contributed to individual tracks, including Ras I Ray on bass and vocals, Jennifer Hill on sax and flute, Buford O’Sullivan on trombone, Ivan Katz on drums, Kirsty Rock, Tamar-kali on lead and backing vocals, Junior Jazz on guitar and vocals, and Menny More on lead and backing vocals. The band will release a dub reggae track for download in the near future; it will also be available here at Dub & Reggae. At our suggestion, they are also considering releasing an Easy Star ringtone similar to the Mavado ringtones released by VP Reggae. Easy Star All Stars touring bandThe dub album’s release will be supported by The Easy Star All-Stars touring group. Easy Star’s collective nature leads to varied lineups of top reggae talent at different shows, which in the past have blown out shows at festivals and headlined shows around the world, including the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Chile, Poland, Turkey, Mexico, Argentina, Israel, Croatia, Ireland, Egypt, Brazil, and beyond. Unlike the studio lineup, the touring group has remained nearly unchanged, gelling through repeated performances together with Ras I Ray, Junior Jazz, Ivan Katz, Tamar-kali, Jenny Hill, and Menny More joined by Jeremy Mage on keyboards. The experience is made truly unique through a live mix by a dub engineer, usually Marcos Ferrari or Jocko Randall of John Brown’s Body. Other members of Easy Star All Stars join the touring group wherever possible for shows, leading to surprise appearances by Ticklah and Michael G as well as reggae legend Ranking Joe, Victor Rice of the Version City All-Stars, Pam Fleming of the Burning Brass, Groove Collective’s Jay Rodriguez, singer Stephanie McKay, Antibalas’s Stuart Bogie, John Brown Body’s Josh Driscoll. This unique chemistry leads to different sounds at every show, allowing the Easy Star All-Stars to consistently deliver an inspiring, invigorating performance time and again.
Easy Star’s Lonely Hearts Dub Band.
Easy Star’s Lonely Hearts Dub Band.
The Lonely Hearts Dub Band track listing:
1. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
2. With A Little Help From My Friends featuring Luciano
3. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds featuring Frankie Paul
4. Getting Better
5. Fixing A Hole
6. She’s Leaving Home featuring Kirsty Rock
7. Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite!
8. Within You Without You featuring Matisyahu
9. When I’m Sixty-Four (Extended Dub Mix) featuring Sugar Minott
10. Lovely Rita featuring Bunny Rugs and U Roy
11. God Morning Good Morning
12. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)
13. A Day In The Life
Easy Star was founded by Goldwasser, Axelrod, and executives Eric Smith and Lem Oppenheimer in 1997. Like many reggae production bands in the past, The Easy Star All-Stars functioned primarily as a studio recording group until they released Dub Side of the Moon 6 years later. Dub Side’s runaway success led Goldwasser and company to form a touring group to take their unique brand of dub versions to the people. The All Stars truly live up to their name, having toured and recorded with Burning Spear, Toots and the Maytals, Jimmy Cliff, Gil Scott-Heron, The Toasters, The Meditations, Bernie Worrell, DJ Logic, MC Solaar, King Django, Antibalas, The Scofflaws, Diana King, Dennis Brown, Monty Alexander, Sister Carol, and others.