Royalty In NYC: Jesse Royal and The King Suns at SOBs

The Palace Pickney Delivers An Emancipation Message During Bob Marley EarthStrong Weekend

Not many artists can fill SOBs on a snowy winter night with temperatures in the twenties. But Jesse Royal is not just any artist. So this past Monday night, his first time performing at the legendary night club he had a toe-to-toe, overflowing crowd out early. The crowd got warm and cozy with some blazing hits by Lionface (Lion King), Max Glazer & Kenny Meez (Federation Sound), DJ Gravy & Micro Don (Rice N’ Peas), Rob Kenner, SeeBorn, and Charlie Brown (BBC Hi-Fi). The temperature kept rising throughout Jah Bami and Knight Blade’s live session—heightened by a rousing performance of their viral hit “I Got That Weed”—before the special surprise guest was announced by the Host, Rob Kenner.  More After The Jump…

The guest was the charismatic, global sensation, New Kingston. The family band brought down the house with “Life, ” “Today,”  “La La La,” and a special rendition of Bob Marley’s “War.” Then Tahir ( Keyboard and Vocals), Courtney Jr. (Percussion and Vocals) Stephen (Guitar and Vocals)  and Courtney Panton Sr. (on Bass and Vocals) delivered “No Friend, “”Heathen” by Bob Marley, and closed out with “Your House” by Steel Pulse. The band ended their set with a spiritual rhythm and drum segment, clearly showing why their latest project, “Kingston City,” debuted at the number one spot on The Billboard Reggae Charts.

During a brief intermission, walking through the crowd, there were many honorable mentions including, members of Brooklyn’s Youth Black Faith, Isaac Faith and Knotti King of Thunderlions, DJ Gringo and Stateside Revolution of  Sirius XM, Brian Orijahnal of Orijahnal Vybz, Michael Goldwasser, DJ Tall Up, Snypa Movements, Bobo Rems of Rebellion City Productions, Khari Kill, Ras Attitude, Photographer Roland Hyde, Promoter Trini Lexy and Promoter Lady Tia.

bobo rems

The  amped up crowd cheered when Jesse Royal and The King Suns stepped on stage. Producer Kareem Burell, founder of XTM Nation and the son of the legendary producer Philip “Fatis” Burrell, joined the crew on stage. The Palace Pikney delivered 12 of his tunes plus a taste of “Here Comes Trouble” by Chronixx. He empowered the audience with words of encouragement before each tune. Each segment of the concert is entitled with the Jesse Royal song befitting of its theme.

I. Greedy Babylon

In the first segment, the Small Axe chopped up Babylon with some fire tunes. He started out with the lyrics of “Greedy Babylon”:

“ We living in a world where neglect is prevalent, with a lot more cavaliers and less diligence; more ties severing daily, none nah mend thanks to this egotistic government.”

 The crowd went wild with this tune. This was followed by “Hotta the Battle,”

 “ Tings a gwan yard and abroad but you have to push back. Not a physical push back but a spiritual.”

 “Push Back” “ Gimme Likkle” and his most popular tune on the Rootsman Riddim, “Modern Day Judas” made the crowd roar.

 II. Feel Ya Pain

The next set was his love tunes and he transitioned into this segment with the question:“How is it living in the cold? Is it nice? Audience responds unanimously, “No”. It’s not nice? Eh, you have to appreciate love in every season.” Then he sang   “Wadada,” “Butterflies,”  and “Feel Ya Pain.” He ended this session with the jazzy song, “Baby Let Me Be.”

 III. So Long Rastafari A Call You

In the final segment, Jesse made his intention and mission clear: “ You have the power of the mind. Nuff of dem Big Fish mind get control. You have to use your mind or continue being a puppet. Then you can’t come talk to me.” The crowd laughed and cheered before the tone got serious with  the Nyabinghi Chant, “So long Rastafari A Call You.” This was followed by the hip -hop, rap lyrics of “Dreaming of Africa” and the pop tune, “This Morning.”“ Power to the People” chants  and audience fist raises, gave way to  the militant Chronixx hit, “Here Comes Trouble.” The final song was “Journey,” the perfect ending for an epic New York City night with majestic vibes.

Jesse Royal and The King Suns at SOB’s in New York: Concert Highlights

IV. Wadada

Kudos from music veterans

I could not make it to SOBs as I am at Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago, but I have to say that I am proud of Jesse Royal’s sold out show at SOBs. Jesse is the most prolific artist I’ve ever met. Whether lyrically on the mic or holding reasoning. He genuinely believes in what he speaks. The mix CD, “Royally Speaking” was just the start. We’ve worked on other projects and I will continue to collaborate with Jesse.

WalshyFire, “Miami’s Prime Minister”
From the group Major Lazer, Black Chiney Sound System, Mad Decent Records
World Renowed Producer, Record Label Owner, DJ, Performer

I really enjoyed the Jesse Royal show.  I grew up going to reggae shows at SOBs and I’ve played there myself many times.  I feel like I’ve seen almost every artist from Jamaica play there over the years, so it was nice to see an up-and-coming artist from yard continuing that tradition.  I was very impressed and encouraged by Jesse’s band – they were great musicians and because of the economics of touring we don’t often get to see bands featuring younger musicians from Jamaica up here – many artists just use local bands to back them up when they come to town.  But I think that Jesse and his manager understand the value of having a homegrown band to tour with, and the value of touring in general.  As for Jesse, he seems charismatic and true to himself on stage, and I hope to see him develop into an artist with staying power. “

-Michael Goldwasser, “The Mark Ronson of Reggae”
World Renowned Producer, Owner of Easy Star Record Label, Songwriter, Musician

 “ I heard about this show and I am not surprised. Jesse Royal is one of reggae music future. I need the people to listen to his music keenly.”

Delly Ranx
Reggae Icon

 V. Butterflies

Audience Reviews- Responses to the question: “ How was the show?”

“Amazing show and superb performance.”

“ He sang my song. That’s a sexy @#5 Ras. I like the song “Feel Ya Pain.” I want to see a video for that. Yes my gurl! I love Jesse Royal.”

“Cool dude off and onstage. His vibes are so real and down to earth. Loved the show!”

“ Modern Day Judas was dope live. My favorite song by him.”

“Lyrically on point.”

“He was holding back. Let it out Natty.”

“Teared up during Journey. Just the combination of great musicians in The King Suns and Jesse Royal’s beautiful, relatable lyrics.”

“ His music resonates in the mind”

“Peter Tosh reincarnated. He is the truth.”

“ The People love him”

“ Conscious Revolutionary”

“He has it!”

“ New Kingston. Jesse Royal. Nuff said!”

“ This show was excellent, he reminds me of a mix of Bob Marley and U-Roy.”

VI.  Hotta the Battle

Jesse Royal is vocally talented, with excellent voice inflection, strong lyrics and serious crossover/mainstream potential. This is a tip of an iceberg performance for his first time at SOBs.   It’s a perfect environment to build, from the Stoosh who fold their arms and look on intensely to the ghetto youth who jump up and gunner dem lighter when fire ah blaze. That’s the beauty of New York, the toughest and most diverse crowd with people from all nations, classes, cultures and races. It’s obvious that Jesse Royal knocked out Babylon in the Melting Pot, first round. Based on New Yorker’s scorecards, he will go the distance when he comes back to the ring, for the next round.


    • Event Promotion:  Tree Reid 
    • Photo Gallery and Video Footage:  Gizmo
  • *Backstage Photo Submitted Courtesy of: Bobo Rems

Written By: Angel Love @LoveDeepAngel

Follow @Boomshots

Like Boomshots on Facebook

Subscribe to Boomshots TV

6 Responses

  1. Paul Wayne says:

    Nice article Char!I loved that it was very informative n included the audiences perception of the show’

  2. HK says:

    As usual, CharStar’s luminous article transported me to the music and made me regret not being at the scene in person. I won’t repeat that mistake next time…

  3. Dan says:

    Felt like I was there. Very detailed review and now I know I missed out. Will check out Jesse Royal’s music and New Kingston.

  4. Wendy Wilson says:

    Hi. This was greatness. I was not there but glad this was documented thank you Boomshots

  5. Knotti King says:

    Thunderlions mentioned in Boomshots article on the Jesse Royal show. ‪#‎RRRR‬ ..Big up CharStar Imani for the love. Shared this article.

  6. Charlie Brown BBC Hi-Fi says:

    Charlene, Unbelievable piece!!!! I’m blown away at the details, people…song by song descriptions…amazing memory from that night…it’s like I’m there again while reading!!! Char love your writing flow….simply amazing! Robbie you have done phenomenal work over the years! For the sound too . Foundation has been layed! I guess we are adding on new energy to catapult the ting 2 do Wurl!!!!

Leave a Reply