The California Roots Music and Arts Festival has spread like wildfire, evolving into a magical three-day reggae-rock play land of green conscious music bliss, having all of the elements for a most triumphant 2014 fifth annual Memorial Day weekend music festival.
The “Cali-Roots Fest” will feature current trend-setting music, with both new and upcoming bands; live-art stage painters encapsulating a true art-to-music experience with live painters interpreting the music, creating their masterpiece for all fest-goers to witness. There will be a multitude of ethnic dishes available, with off-site tent and RV camping facilities, efficient shuttle services and a zero-waste festival policy. Between the past and projected sold-out events, the California Roots Music and Arts Festival has notably become the largest festival of its genre, with 23,500 attendees last year and an expected 30,000 projected sell-out for the 2014 Memorial Day weekend festival.
The reggae-rock genre came to fruition in the nineties; birthed from the band Sublime, which combined ska, Jamacain rooted reggae and modern-day rock and roll, encompassing the one-love movement, while blurring creed, race and religious boundaries. Bands as Sublime with Rome, Slightly Stoopid, 311, The Dirty Heads, Pepper, The Expendables and Iration kept the new sound alive and with festivals as the California Roots Music and Arts Festival and its founders Jeff Monser and Dan Sheehan, they are quickly carving the reggae-rock path, making history in the genre through their California Roots reggae-rock festivals.
This year, the music alone will take center stage at California Roots Festival with some of the most recognized national reggae and reggae rock touring acts in the genre, such as Grammy winning artists Damian and Ziggy Marley; sons of the legendary Bob Marley, as well as Billboard’s #1 reggae selling band Rebelution, along with the triple platinum album artists 311, Steel Pulse; who’s band is widely recognized for streaming a live performance nationwide for Bob Marley’s memorial and also for their philanthropic mission donating 100% of its proceeds to Haiti to benefit solar electric health clinics with their single “Hold on 4 Haiti,” and SOJA with a collective 40 million Youtube views and three million Facebook fans attracting an almost Grateful Dead-like international following, all giving precedence to the this years attractions. Forty-two other genre-favorite acts will perform celebrating music, community and the movement of the genre.
The festival has brought back an element of music history, with “Pop Fest” memories at the nostalgic and picturesque Monterey County Fair and Events Center; formally named Monterey County Fairgrounds. The 1967 Monterey Pop Festival drew record-breaking audiences, with major acts of its time as: Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Ravi Shankar, Otis Redding, Jefferson Airplane, The Mama’s & The Papas, Janis Joplin and many more, which became the true template for other music festivals around the globe, as it was widely promoted, well-attended and now an instrumental piece of music history.
“It’s been our dream to expand to the main arena stage, where Jimi Hendrix lit his guitar on fire while performing. We want to give the main stage artists and headliners a piece of that history and with current projections on sales; it looks as if we will have another sold-out festival and packed arena for those artists. It’s a shared dream come true for both artists and myself,” says festival co-founder Dan Sheehan.
“We are elated to be a part of this movement. We think of this more as a three-day safe haven, where families and music lovers can come, relax, throw some blankets down and simply be themselves, without judgment, while embracing unity and friendship – both new and old,” says Sheehan.
By Scotty Moore
FestPop Publisher & Founder