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Check this page for updates and announcements from Easy Star.

April 28, 2015
GIANT PANDA GUERILLA DUB SQUAD RELEASES NEW ALBUM "BRIGHT DAYS"
"With the 2012 release of Country, Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad (GPGDS) proved their musical identity to be as undefinable as their name. The Rochester, NY-based quintet was known as a reggae-jam band, relentlessly touring on the back of their debut album Slow Down (2006). Six years later, GPGDS released the Americana-themed Country which defied expectations for a reggae band’s sophomore release. “It is acoustic roots music at its finest...a major statement of purpose from a group who truly embody the spirit of their music” praised CBS Street Date. The band has since released two reggae albums, In These Times (2012), and Steady (2014), which debuted at #1 on the Billboard Reggae chart.

On May 18, GPGDS will release Bright Days on Easy Star Records. Like Steady, the album was recorded at Rear Window Studio in Brookline, MA, and produced by Craig Welsch (10 Ft. Ganja Plant). Featuring nine original songs ranging from American Beauty-era Grateful Dead sounds (the title track) to African-inspired instrumentals (“Atabey”) to early Neil Young (“It Won’t Be Long”), Bright Days at times plays like a lost vinyl gem found at a yard sale.

Bright Days features guests G. Love on harmonica on “Humboldt County Gold,” and renowned mandolin player Eric Robertson (The Boston Boys) on “Atabey,” “Good To You,” and “War Machine.” Milt Reder, the owner of Rear Window Studio, plays guitar throughout the record. Reder has a long history in the business as a player, producer and songwriter, having worked with Susan Tedeschi, Bo Diddley, and others. Welsch suggested Reder participate in the Bright Days recording. The band was hesitant to take such a risk, until they witnessed him shredding George Harrison lines note for note in a Beatles cover band in a small Boston bar. Reder instantaneously provided a Zen atmosphere with his playing, guiding GPGDS to accomplish their goal of recording songs that had never been rehearsed or worked out previous to the studio session. "When Milt plugged in his guitar and began to play, we realized that the session was serious and special," says singer-bassist James Searl.

Bright Days will be released on 180-gram black vinyl, along with a 180-gram black vinyl version of Steady. A pre-order launched April 14 at iTunes and via the band’s website, which includes an instant download of the title track.

Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad kicks off a seven-date West coast tour on May 22 at California Roots Festival in Monterey, CA.

Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad - U.S. Tour Dates
May 9: Orlando, FL - Reggae On The Block
May 22: Monterey, CA - California Roots Festival
May 24: Novato, CA - HopMonk Tavern
May 25: Oakland, CA - Leo’s
May 27: Las Vegas, NV - Brooklyn Bowl
May 28: Hermosa Beach, CA - Saint Rocke
May 30: Ventura, CA - Discovery Ventura
May 31: Solana Beach, CA - Fiesta del Sol
July 11: San Bernardino, CA - Chalice Festival
July 16-19: Trumansburg, NY - GrassRoots Festival
July 31: Berryville, VA - Pasture Palooza
Aug 8: Loveland, CO - Arise Music Festival
Aug 21: Franklin, OH - Ohmstead Music Festival
Aug 22: Bartow, WV - Camp Barefoot
Additional Dates TBA

http://LivePanda.com " More info »

March 31, 2015
NEW KINGSTON RELEASE "TODAY" MUSIC VIDEO
"New Kingston release their official video for "Today" from new album Kingston City!

Watch it on YouTube

 photo NK Screenshot.png

Download the new album Kingston City on iTunes " More info »

February 25, 2015
JBB RETURNS WITH KINGS AND QUEENS IN DUB
"Almost two years to the day after releasing the beloved Kings And Queens - which topped the Billboard Reggae Chart and reconfirmed John Brown’s Body’s status as one of the most influential American reggae bands - JBB returns with KINGS AND QUEENS IN DUB. Taking inspiration from landmark dub albums by Burning Spear, Aswad, and others, the new release features the entire sequence from Kings And Queens mixed by a who’s who of dub champions including Ticklah, Dubmatix, Dubfader (of 10 Ft. Ganja Plant), UK legend Dennis Bovell, Yesking, Michael G (of Easy Star All-Stars), Lord Echo (of The Black Seeds), and more.

While the band has been working on new material for an upcoming release loosely scheduled for this fall, saxophonist Drew Sayers worked closely with Easy Star Records founders Eric Smith and Lem Oppenheimer to put together this album. John Brown’s Body had previously released the 2012 EP JBB IN DUB and had a number of great instrumental dub tracks in their catalog, but this release marks the first time the band has attempted to do a complete dub version of one of their full existing albums.

The dub collaborators give a good sense of the currently growing global dub scene, hailing from areas of the world including the UK, Canada, New Zealand, and the USA. Ticklah, Dubmatix, Michael G and Dubfader are good representatives of the current vanguard from North America, each with past collaborations with JBB in their history. Dennis Bovell and Yesking both represent the UK, Bovell of course as one of the most influential dub artists ever, having started his career with Matumbi, and eventually producing much of Linton Kwesi Johnson’s output, along with helping to define the sound of UK lovers rock in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s.

A first track from the record, “Pulsing Dub,” which was mixed by Yesking, is being premiered by Boomshots on February 25th, and the track will be made available to fans via John Brown’s Body’s SoundCloud page, which has over 2 million followers. The album itself will be available via pre-order at iTunes, including two tracks instantly available to anyone who pre-orders.

John Brown’s Body has a handful of major tour dates coming up, including an appearance at California Roots Festival in Monterey, CA, which has become one of the biggest events in the US reggae calendar each year, as well as a record release show at Brooklyn Bowl in Brooklyn, NY, which will also include a DJ set from Ticklah.
" More info »

February 05, 2015
KINGSTON CITY #1 ON BILLBOARD REGGAE CHART
"
New Kingston’s Kingston City has impressively debuted at #1 on the Billboard Reggae chart. Kingston City (released January 27, 2015 on Easy Star Records) is the band’s third studio album and their first release to claim the #1 spot on the Billboard Reggae chart. The album is also their first release on the leading US reggae label Easy Star Records. The family group, which features three brothers (Stephen, Courtney Jr., and Tahir) and their father, create what Top Shelf Reggae calls, “…a genuine body of work that displays an incredible vocal range, candid lyrics and impressive instrumentals. It gives the listener the sort of meaningful connection and escape that every piece of music should provide.”

“With its #1 debut on the reggae chart, Kingston City solidifies New Kingston’s place with the reggae elite. Their hard work, prolific touring, and positive community continue to give the band momentum in 2015,” says Easy Star CEO Eric Smith. He adds, “Furthermore it’s thrilling to see a fast rising New York band who embodies the perfect balance of old and new reggae sensibilities.”

The new record includes 12 songs and guest appearances by members of Tribal Seeds, Hawaiian singer-songwriter Kimie Miner, Sister Carol, The Wailing Souls, and the late, great reggae legend Sugar Minott. The band is currently on tour (which includes select dates with Common Kings and Through the Roots) showcasing songs from the new album and back catalog. Press accolades for Kingston City have been pouring in from a diversity of national and international media outlets.

“New Kingston —the reggae power trio consisting of brothers Tahir, Steve and Courtney Panton, Jr.— have gone international, touring the world several times over… and establishing themselves as a self-contained unit with their own original material.” – LargeUp

“This album is the pairing of exceptional musicianship and excellent production along with a guest-list of talent that reads like a reggae legacy spanning decades of genres…Kingston City is beaming with positivity, messages of faith and expressions of love…” – The Pier

“This brother-led group bring an innovative new school approach to live roots reggae – a little like Morgan Heritage or Steel Pulse but definitely pushing their own aesthetic.” – Forward Ever

Kingston City – is well-crafted and definitely New Kingston’s best album to date.” – United Reggae
" More info »

January 27, 2015
NEW KINGSTON'S KINGSTON CITY IN STORES NOW
"New Kingston has just released Kingston City, their first album through Easy Star Records! The new album is available through iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and our Easy Star Records store!

See what critics have to say about Kingston City so far!

“Kingston City is a genuine body of work that displays an incredible vocal range, candid lyrics and impressive instrumentals. It gives the listener the sort of meaningful connection and escape that every piece of music should provide.” – Top Shelf Reggae

“New Kingston —the reggae power trio consisting of brothers Tahir, Steve and Courtney Panton, Jr.— have gone international, touring the world several times over… and establishing themselves as a self-contained unit with their own original material.” – LargeUp

“This brother-led group bring an innovative new school approach to live roots reggae – a little like Morgan Heritage or Steel Pulse but definitely pushing their own aesthetic.” – Forward Ever

“The riddims are primarily solid reggae, while the soul and spirit (including vocals that are rapid-fire as often as meditative) are progressive and forward-thinking…New Kingston does an impressive job of helping to carry the torch for modern reggae.” – Nice Up
" More info »


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Easy Star News

April 28, 2015
GIANT PANDA GUERILLA …
RELEASES NEW ALBUM "BRIGHT…
With the 2012 release of Country, Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad (GPGDS) proved their musica… More »

March 31, 2015
NEW KINGSTON RELEASE
"TODAY" MUSIC VIDEO
New Kingston release their official video for "Today" from new album Kingston City More »

February 25, 2015
JBB RETURNS WITH
KINGS AND QUEENS IN DUB
Almost two years to the day after releasing the beloved Kings And Queens - which topped th… More »

February 05, 2015
KINGSTON CITY #1 ON
January 27, 2015
NEW KINGSTON'S KINGST…
January 20, 2015
REBELUTION'S COUNT ME


More News »

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