Kabaka Pyramid Kontraband Tour Hit New York City
On Friday, November 23, New York City fans endured the frigid weather for the highly anticipated, Kabaka Pyramid, Kontraband Tour at SOB’s. New York City renowned selector DJ Gringo of Stateside Revolution and Host of Sirius XM, “The Joint,” warmed up the crowd awaiting the revolutionary artist. Next up, the Bebble Rockers excited the crowd with an electrifying, symphonic rendition of “Make Way” (the song features Pressure Buss Pipe on the Kontraband album), as Kabaka Pyramid joined the stage. More Concert Highlights After The Jump…
“New York, How you feeling? Wunna ready to bun some fire in here, tonight?” Kabaka started the concert off with some conscious tunes from his debut album, “Kontraband.” Next up was “Never Gonna Be A Slave,” on the “Cane” riddim, a DJ Frass production, which the crowd sang the lyrics to, in unison. The temperature in SOBs rose as Kabaka delivered more new tunes from the new album, including “My Time” and the crowd roared when Kabaka delivered “No Capitalist” from his 2013 album, “Lead the Way.” This gave way to his cover of “Ain’t No Giving In” by Chronixx, another blazing track on the incendiary “Tropical Escape” riddim.
Kabaka Pyramid delivered “Herb Defender” off his “Lead the Way” album, which cites a popular, biblical excerpt regarding “Weeping and Moaning.” The decriminalization of marijuana remains a huge topic of interest in the current political climate. Reggae has always been a medium for social commentary and Kabaka’s lyrics in this song, reflect global changes and propaganda regarding this plant and its prohibition.
The Bebble Rockers rocked out to this tune, with a guitar solo. Cleverly, Kabaka delivered his rendition of Sizzla Kalonji – “Smoke” on the One Draw riddim.
Smoke the herb and get a humble thought.
The song “Reggae Music,” Kabaka explained to the crowd, was written “to pay homage to the roots of Reggae music, including Ska, Rocksteady, Rockers and Rub-A-Dub. “ Kabaka followed this song with “No Fenke Fenke,” which features Shanique Marie of Equiknoxx Records, and is a Yaadcore production.
The “Lion of Judah” flags were waved in the crowd harmoniously, as Kabaka took no breaks between songs and went from one song to the next, effortlessly. The Bebble Rockers played Winston Riley’s classic “Stalag Riddim,” as Kabaka covered Tenor Saw’s “Ring the Alarm.” The crowd broke out into dancing, when the Bebble Rockers performed “Bam Bam” and “Murder She Wrote” by Chaka Demus and Pliers.
The ladies cheered with audible exhilaration, when the Bebble Rockers played the sensual Genis Trani Nadal riddim for “Kaught Up,” while Kabaka delivered reggae chants, rhythm and blues vocals and authentic hip hop vocals, over the riddim. The video for this song, directed by Alex Sandoval, premiered on BET Jams in April 2018. Then Kabaka performed, “Natural Woman,” with its poignant and powerful lyrics about self-love.
“We have to love these bodies that we are given by the Most High Creator. Do you agree? For each time we come into this earth, we are given a body, based on our needs, to grow and evolve. So once, you decide seh that body nah good and change it, you ah go against Divinity. Rastafari say always love yourself, no matter how you look, you coulda black or white, you coulda blue or green. “- Kabaka Pyramid
The magnitude of this powerful performance, superseded expectations. Kabaka Pyramid approached the legendary stage with the fiery of his predecessors and confidence in his musical content and mission. He and the Bebble Rockers, took the audience through a lyrical time machine and covered several genres of music including Rap, Hip Hop, Reggae and Dancehall. The combination of a top-tier deejay, DJ Gringo, the skilled musicians of Bebble Rockers, and a stellar live performance by Kabaka Pyramid, made this a memorable New York City Concert.