First Concert In A Year To Take Place Jan. 16 At Miami’s Bayfront Park

(Photograph by Marlon “Ajamu” Myrie)

After spending the past year behind bars on drug charges, Grammy-nominated Reggae star Buju Banton is free on bail and making plans to return to the stage at Miami’s Bayfront Memorial Park one month from today.

Sharing the stage at the historic concert will be Stephen Marley, the world-renowned producer and singer who anted up his own Florida home to secure Buju’s six-figure bail bond, reggae icon Freddie McGregor of “Bobby Bobylon” fame, legendary drum and bass duo Sly & Robbie (who are also nominated for a Best Reggae Album Grammy this year), diamond-selling superstar Shaggy, Gramps Morgan, who hit the road with Buju on his last “Rasta Got Soul” tour, and Banton’s longtime sparring partner Wayne Wonder, who first shared the stage with him at Sting some 20 years ago. The show’s promoter, Rockers Island Productions, has indicated that more artists are expected to be added as the show date draws near.

A federal judge gave Buju Banton permission to stage this concert on the Sunday of Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend from 4p.m. till 10p.m. Since his release from custody on November 11, Banton has been on house arrest. Fitted with a GPS tracking device, the embattled reggae star is allowed to visit his lawyer and the doctor, and is allowed just one visitor per day. He awaits retrial in February on charges of conspiring to purchase more than five kilos of cocaine. His first run through the justice system ended with a mistrial.

“The concept is to reunite with the fans and thank them personally for the tremendous level of support they have shown to me during these turbulent times,” explains Buju. “I look forward to touching the stage once more and coming together with the masses in a spirit of togetherness, harmony, unification and solidarity.”

For more information log on towww.BUJULIVE.com

In other Buju Banton news, the acclaimed artist has received his fifth Grammy nomination in the Best Reggae Album category for his prophetic new project, Before The Dawn. Recorded mostly at his own Gargamel Music studio in Kingston, the album boasts some of the most powerful songs written by Banton since his professional entry into the music business over twenty years ago. Banton was previously acknowledged by the Recording Academy for his albums Rasta Got Soul (2009), Too Bad (2007), Friends for Life (2004) and Inna Heights (1999).