How’d The Show Go?
Article By: SD Liz
Photo By: Philippe Gassies

Groundation played twice at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach, California, as part of their stop on their Building An Ark Tour. The performances took place on Sunday, August 20th, and Monday, August 21st.  Formed in 1998, Groundation is a reggae band infused with jazz tones from Sonoma County in Northern California. Since then, they have produced seven albums and toured worldwide. They are well-known for their improvisation, spiritual lyrics, and instrumental solos.

On August 21st, Groundation played with The Earful and Chali 2na. The Earful is a jazzy funk band and Chali 2na is a well-known MC who once played with such bands as Jurassic 5 and Ozomatli. Chali 2na was backed by an organist, a bass player equipped with a seven-string bass, and a drummer.  Chali’s lyrics are very conscientious and the songs performed were about peace, freedom, and the righteous way. He also performed a song from Jurassic 5 called “Quality Control.”

Groundation performed and not only is the music uplifting, but it is very diverse. Groundation features two female backup vocalists from Jamaica who also dance as if inspired by original African dancing. This was well-received from the crowd with one guy even shaking the dancer’s hand and bowing down to her at the end of the show. Instrumental solos happened in each song with a female guest banging on a bongo in one song and a man hitting a tin drum in another song. Front man, Harrison Stafford, aka “Reggae Professor,” addressed the crowd well while singing, and also in between songs speaking about worldly issues, including the current issues in Libya and how governments all over the world need to build bridges of peace. The crowd was amazing for a Monday night. However, it wasn’t fully-packed; a lot of people came out for the great performances.

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