Rebelution’s positive lyrics buoyed by a chilled reggae groove
Routinely topping the Billboard Reggae Chart, Rebelution is tied with UB40 for the third-most No. 1 hits on the chart, following Bob Marley and Matisyahu.
“We are in a position where we can make a positive impact on people,” lead vocalist/guitarist Eric Rachmany reported. “Generally in our music there is an underlying message of positivity and encouragement and motivation.”
Returning to Maui on Friday to play MACC’s Yokouchi Pavilion & Courtyard, Rebelution has been popular in the islands ever since fans began calling radio stations to play the band’s song “Safe and Sound,” from their 2007 breakthrough album “Courage to Grow.”
“When we went to Hawaii for the first time, we couldn’t believe how many people knew our music,” Rachmany said. ” ‘Safe and Sound’ was like a big summer hit. It was an incredible experience.”
Formed in 2004, while its members were attending Santa Barbara College, the band includes Rory Carey on keyboards, drummer Wesley Finley, bassist Marley Williams, and Zach Meyerowitz, who tours with them on trumpet.
With each successive album from “Courage to Grow” to “Bright Side of Life,” their popularity increased, leading to major festival dates at Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza and Glastonbury in the UK.
And despite giving away half of the album to their fans during the six weeks leading up to its release, the band’s third album, “Peace of Mind,” became their most popular. A triple CD priced as a single album, “Peace of Mind” featured a standard studio album, a stripped down acoustic version of the same songs, and a dub remix of the 12 tracks.
In 2014, they released “Count Me In,” an infectious recording that highlighted the band’s desire to inspire their fans to have a positive impact in their lives. The album featured a couple of special guest appearances: dancehall singer Collie Buddz on the track “Hate To Be the One” and legendary reggae vocalist Don Carlos on “Roots Reggae Music.”
Reviewing the band’s most recent album “Free Rein,” The Pier Magazine noted, “Rebelution is at the pinnacle of reggae-rock.” The album’s first single, “Celebrate,” captured their wide appeal, with righteous, positive lyrics buoyed by a chilled reggae groove.
* Rebelution plays MACC’s Yokouchi Pavilion & Courtyard on Friday at 7:30 p.m. Gates open at 7. Through the Roots will open. Tickets are $39.50 and $49.50 general admission, and $69.50 for VIP (plus applicable fees). Prices increase $5.50 on day-of-show. For tickets or more information, visit the box office, call 242-6469, or go online to www.mauiarts.org.
It’s exciting news that Daryl Hall and John Oates will play the MACC next year on March 29. Paying homage to the greats of the past while sounding distinctly contemporary, the legendary duo created a unique mix of rock and soul, recording some of the most influential music of the 1970s and ’80s.
Hits such as “Rich Girl,” “She’s Gone,” “You Make my Dreams,” “Sara Smile” and “I Can’t Go for That,” captivated audiences around the globe. Henry Kapono will open.
Tickets go on sale to the general public on Saturday. Tickets are $59 (general admission), $69, $89, $129, and $149 for Gold Circle (plus applicable fees).
The Maui Pops Orchestra presents a special “Holiday Pops” concert on Sunday at MACC’s Castle Theater featuring special guests, Grammy-nominated pianist David Benoit and Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Sara Gazarek.
Under the baton of music director James Durham, the 50-plus member orchestra will celebrate the holiday season in the first half of the program with orchestral renderings of familiar holiday music. Benoit and Gazarek will perform in the second half, including music from “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”
A celebrated musician, Benoit’s eclectic path has embraced straight-ahead jazz, classical music, pop, smooth jazz and R&B. As a composer and conductor his credits include work with Leonard Bernstein, the National Symphony, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and his TV and film credits include themes for “All My Children” and “Sisters,” and scores for “The Stars Fell on Henrietta,” “The Christmas Tree,” and the “Charlie Brown” specials.
His latest recording, “David Benoit & Friends,” saw him collaborate with Dave Koz, Marc Antoine, Rick Braun, Peter White, and Lindsey Webster. Highlights include the sensual “Make it Real,” with acclaimed jazz vocalist Webster, and the Irving Berlin standard “How Deep Is The Ocean,” with Braun on his distinctive muted trumpet.
Vocalist Gazarek was hailed by the Los Angeles Times, as an artist who, “may well turn out to be the next important jazz singer.” Known for her sophisticated jazz and standards-based style, while still in high school she became the first winner of the prestigious Ella Fitzgerald Foundation Outstanding Jazz Vocalist Award.
Gazarek’s most recent album, “Thirsty Ghost,” which included covers of songs by Stevie Wonder and Dolly Parton, was just nominated for a Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album.
The “Holiday Pops” concert is presented on Sunday at 3 p.m. in MACC’s Castle Theater. Tickets are $22, $35, $50, and $60 (plus applicable fees). Tickets are half-price for students 18 and under, except for the $22 seats.
Patrons who purchase tickets to all four shows in the Maui Pops series (Dec. 15, Jan. 26, Feb. 23, and March 8) will receive a 10 percent discount off each ticket. This offer does not apply to the $22 tickets or to discounted tickets.
Tickets to all four shows must be purchased in one transaction to qualify for series discount.
Grammy-nominated slack-key guitar player Jeff Peterson returns to George Kahumoku Jr.’s “Masters of Hawaiian Music” series at the Napili Kai Beach Resort on Wednesday. Peterson’s latest album, “Ka Nani O Ki Ho’alu,” pays tribute to the legendary slack key players who inspired young artists during the Hawaiian cultural renaissance of the 1970s, including Keola Beamer, Ledward Kaapana, Dennis Kamakahi, Cyril Pahinui, and Peter Moon.
The Napili show will also feature George Kahumoku, Jr., Peter deAquino, Sterling Seatong, Max Angel, and Wainani Kealoha.
Doors open at 6:45 p.m., show at 7:30. Show only tickets are $37.99 in advance and $45 at the door the night of the show. Dinner and show tickets are $95. Tickets available at www.slackkeyshow.com.
Ron Artis II & the Truth, (with his brother Stevon Artis on drums), heads to MACC’s McCoy Studio Theater on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. A talented multi-instrumentalist, the Oahu based musician recently collaborated with Booker T Jones (of “Green Onions” fame) and G Love. His influences run from Delta blues and gospel, to classic soul and rock. His fans include Jack Johnson. Tickets are $26 and $31 (plus applicable fees).
Russian cellist Georgy Gusev teams with Maui artist Tom Sewell for a unique multimedia collaboration on Friday at the ProArts Playhouse in Kihei. A graduate of the Moscow Tchaikovsky State Conservatory and Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Gusev has performed at major music festivals and events worldwide. Making his Carnegie Hall debut in 2018, he has created a new soundtrack for Sewell’s “Enigma” multimedia installation. Tickets are $50. Call 463-6550.
Maui filmmaker Ken Martinez Burgmaier recently flew to Washington D.C. to film the International Guitar Competition at the Smithsonian and Kennedy Center, concluding with a gala concert featuring Pat Metheny, Russell Malone, Stanley Jordan, Russ Freeman, John Scofield, Bobby Watson, and Casandra Wilson.
Guitarist Stanley Jordan will present a tribute to Jimi Hendrix on Jan. 24 in McCoy Studio Theater.