Photos: Montreal Reggae Festival Celebrates its 10th Anniversary in style
A trip to Montreal for the annual Reggae Festival is always a special time, however this year the Montreal International Reggae Festival took it up a notch further to commemorate their 10 year anniversary with the best of Reggae and Dancehall acts from the Caribbean. The three day festival took place August 16th - August 18th with record breaking attendance throughout the festival. Leading up to the Friday night kickoff, the Montreal International Reggae Festival held a series of free workshops from noted speakers Helene Lee, Reggae Historian Roger Steffens, and Jabar Richeus on a variety of topics related to the origins of the Rasta Movement, Reggae History, and Empowering People.
Reggae artist Hawkeye was one of the Jamaican artists on the opening night lineup then Morgan Heritage headlined Friday night's opening celebration. Morgan Heritage back together as a group since pursuing solo careers have been on tour promoting their long awaited new album "Here Come The Kings". Despite Una Morgan not being able to perform due to illness, the rest of Morgan Heritage delighted the Montreal fans who had not seen them on the festival since they last played in 2008. Also appearing on Friday night's set was the next generation of Morgan Heritage. Gramps Morgan's son Jemere on tour with the group opened up for Morgan Heritage and performed songs from his upcoming debut EP.
Photo Highlights: Opening Night at the Montreal Reggae Festival with Hawkeye, Jemere Morgan, and Morgan Heritage
Day 2 at the Montreal Reggae Festival
Saturday brought sunny skies and a capacity sold out crowd to witness Dancehall night at the Montreal Reggae Festival. Dancehall artists Sustane and Tifa warmed up the early crowd in attendance. Mr. Vegas then charged up the crowd further with his set of dancehall hits. Easily one of the highest energy acts of the day was Kes The Band, a soca / reggae fusion band from Trinidad and Tobago making their first appearance in Montreal. At this point, I wondered how the remaining acts might top this crowd favorite, however no worries as the legendary Shaggy "Mr. BoomBastic", backed by his own band easily entertained the crowd with his hits as only Shaggy can do along with Rayvon as a special guest on their song collaborations such as the popular "It Wasn't Me" and "Angel". To close out the night, The King of the Dancehall, Beenie Man backed by the Ruff Kutt band brought the house down as he worked through his crowd favorite dancehall anthems.
Montreal Reggae Festival Fans pack the venue
Photo Highlights of Day 2 at the Montreal Reggae Festival featuring Sustane, Tifa, Mr. Vegas, Kes the Band, Shaggy and Beenie Man
Day 3 Montreal Reggae Festival
A near capcity crowd was in attendance for the final day of the festival. Late the prior day, it was announced that Luciano would not be appearing as planned due to unexpected Visa issues. Despite the change in line up, fans were in for a spectacular day of Reggae. Canadian Artists Visionary and Jah Cutta had well received opening performances. Next up was Yellowman & The Saggitarius Band for his always entertaining high energy set. Serani provided a fun and entertaining set then it was time for the Ruff Kutt Band to take center stage once again to back the final acts of the evening. Alaine accompanied by a trio of supporting vocalists had an impressive set and showcased her classical piano background playing lead keyboard on her signature song, "Ordinary Love". Crowd favorite Cocoa Tea delivered a strong set of his sing along classics then Di Captain, Freddie McGregor had the honor to close out another successful year of the Montreal Reggae festival performing classics from his extensive catalog and new song selections from his new album "Di Captain". A classic finale to 3 days of quality entertainment at the Montreal International Reggae Festival leaving everyone in attendance fully satisfied and looking forward to the 21st annual celebration in 2014.
Faces at the Montreal Reggae Festival
Photo Highlights: Day 3 at the Montreal Reggae Festival featuring Visionary, Jah Cutta, Yellowman, Serani, Alaine, Cocoa Tea, and Freddie McGregor
Congrats to the ongoing efforts of the Montreal Reggae Festival Team and hosts who made it all possible
See the full Montreal Reggae Festival Slideshow of Photos below on our Flick Gallery below
Empress K is the Founder, Primary Photo-Journalist and Editor of www.reggaereflection.com. The Reggae Reflection team has gained international recognition with quality coverage of premier reggae events in Jamaica, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, Aruba, Barbados, Guyana, and Nigeria as well as numerous completed photography assignments for notable reggae events in the New England area, NY, Alabama, and Florida region. Festival coverage has included Groovin In the Park, Six Flags NJ Caribbean Concert Series, IRAWMA,HangOut Festival Alabama, 9Mile Festival Miami, Rebel Salute, Sunfest FL , www.oneheartfestival.com and more.
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