Austin Reggae Festival w/ Black Uhuru, Nattali Rize, Collie Buddz, Mighty Mystic
This annual springtime sun splash now celebrates a quarter-century as Austin’s premier riddim-generating, dance-inducing, people-watching, Jah-praising, life-affirming extravaganza. Synced to 4/20, the festival guarantees requisite irie vibes, particularly this year’s strong and varied lineup of legends, up-and-coming youngbloods, and the best of Austin’s genre talent.
Only Bob Marley moved more reggae albums than Saturday headliners Black Uhuru. Lead by founding member Derrick “Duckie” Simpson and featuring long-time vocalist Andrew Bees, expect to hear anthems “Sinsemilla,” “Spongi Reggae,” and “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.” Aptly-named singer/producer Collie Buddz, who exploded on the scene a decade ago with “Mamacita,” wrecks the house on Saturday as well. Nattali Rize, Mighty Mystic, and Austin’s Hail Marley appear earlier in the day.
Throughout the weekend, locals DJ RJ and Jah Ray spin vinyl early and between sets. Festival sponsor the Flamingo Cantina also features many of the headliners in a more intimate setting on Sixth. And Reggae Fest again benefits the Central Texas Food Bank, so canned goods are encouraged.– Jay Trachtenberg