Top Reggae acts dominate at 10th annual Caribbean Seabreeze Festival


By: Adam Arredondo
Photos by: Marie Mendoza
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Ever wondered how far a breeze from the Caribbean can blow? Well, it traveled close to 2,700 miles on July 22, 2007 from Jamaica to the Queen Mary Park in Long Beach, California, for the 10th Annual Caribbean Seabreeze Festival. The sold out event hosted six thousand people as they enjoyed some of Jamaica's finest, including Buju Banton, Cocoa Tea, Elephant Man, and Shaggy. Punta Artists, Supa G and Mime added quality Belizean spice to the festival along with Los Angeles hip hop artist, K.U.P.

Highly anticipated by the Long Beach crowd, Buju Banton's first appearance on stage stirred a reggae riot. Buju flung down hit selections one by one. Classics like Love Sponge, Murderer, and Champion, along with his photogenic smile, and stage presence gave Long Beach a life long musical memory. Driver A, Buju's hit single on the Taxi riddim, caused another eruption in the audience as thousands of lips followed along with his lyrics.

buju banton.jpgThere was no need for power generators on stage as the Energy God, Elephant Man, approached the multiplying crowd. His orange colored hair, green pants, and green tie obnoxiously wrapped around the collar of a black sleeveless shirt complimented the dancehall superstar's performance. Elephant Man stated his concern for the young fans in the audience, and declared he was going to host a "clean show". Crowd participation was far above the ground as Elephant Man performed big tunes like Pon Di River, and gave the crowd Five O, featuring Wyclef, although Wyclef was not present.

An afternoon performance from the sweet voice of Cocoa Tea sparked a reggae fire in Long Beach as he blessed the crowd with classics like Good Life, Tune In, and Rocking Dolly. In high spirits after Cocoa Tea's performance, thousands of reggae fans chanted the veteran reggae artist back for an encore.

As daylight faded, Shaggy approached the stage with a charming smile, and charismatic delivery. Ladies in the Queen Mary Park gave their full attention as Shaggy crooned them with hit singles like Angel, and It Wasn’t Me. While performing his more recent single, Church Heathen, the sold out crowd began to build more energy, and the bar raised another level for the next artist, Buju Banton.

Presented by Seabreeze Promotions and Adamari Studios, the 10th Annual Caribbean Seabreeze Festival proved to be another success for all parties involved. Previous productions at the Seabreeze Festival have featured Nadine Sutherland, Wayne Wonder, Junior Reed, Israel Vibration, Queen Ifrica, Baby Cham, Culture, Beenie Man, and countless more.