Explore the variations of reggae music, including ska, rock steady and reggaeton at the first annual Reggae Fest Chicago, Saturday August 13 in Pilsen's Adams Medill Park. The one day event highlights a line-up packed with reggae musicians and headlined by icons Toots & The Maytals and Lee "Scratch" Perry.
Pioneering Jamaican group Toots & The Maytals are credited with recording the very first reggae tune, 1968's 'Do The Reggay.' Lead singer Toots Hibbert's velvety vocals have left their mark on every era of the genre, from ska, to rock steady and finally roots reggae. The group hasn't appeared in Chicago since 2010 so the show is a must see.
Lee "Scratch" Perry is a legendary reggae producer and performer who kickstarted Bob Marley's career and developed the dub sound that continues to evolve and influence a wide array of music. The prolific artist has produced everyone from Paul and Linda McArtney, The Beastie Boys and The Clash but he remains rooted in the reggae sound.
FOOD, DRINK & ACTIVITIES
The family-friendly festival also supplies art activities and soccer games for kids as well as food and craft vendors. Local food vendors and food trucks, will be on hand, with an emphasis on Caribbean styles and flavors, plus plenty of ice-cold Red Stripe beer.
Two adjacent stages will feature acts all day long, capping off with evening performances by Perry and Toots & The Maytals.
The Essentials: Reggae Fest Chicago
August 13, 12-10 p.m.
Adams Medill Park, 1301 W. 14th St.
General Admission $45 | Tickets available online
Photo of Lee Scratch Perry courtesy of Reggae Fest Chicago