A YEAR-END REGGAE RETROSPECTIVE

A LOOK BACK ON A YEAR FULL OF REGGAE

by Michael Greenland

Well, of course a power outage cancelled the reggae family Christmas/New Year’s party that is the Holiday Revival. It put the capper on a day filled with bad vibes for yours truly. Talked to more than one other person today who could’ve really used some Irie vibes as they fought through issues, be they physical or emotional.

But if this was the only misstep of the year, then what a year it was! This was my first full year following the Reggae beat, so I have no other years with which to compare it, but I’ve heard people say this was the best year ever. Hard to argue.

I was asked on Christmas Eve to list my five favorite shows of the year. How can you choose? I think the list begins with Edgewater Live…toes in the sand on a perfect night, watching the sun set into the lake. From there, take your pick…I have a personal soft spot for Playhouse Square, because it felt like an intimate family gathering. Howe Meadow on the summer solstice seemed like a spirited festival of peace. Reggae brunch at the Parkview (even though I was sick as a dog) lived up to its billing. There was a show at The Brothers Lounge over the summer that took on a mystical vibe for so many. Halloween at Vosh…well, that was just crazy fun. And there was quite a party atmosphere at the December girl’s birthday we just celebrated at PJ McIntyre’s.

Those are are my personal highlight shows. Some people love the Hessler Street Fair, or Wade Oval, and who could blame them? And the few who made it to Kickin’ Country show will attest that it was quite a different night. No matter which show held that special place in your heart, we can agree that they were all great performances.

But the Reggae family is about more than the beautiful music and spirited dancing. It’s about the people, the vibe, and the togetherness. Like hanging out together at the post-show party after Lakewood Library; or catching up for hours on end after at Cleveland Eats festival.

Come what may in 2018, we know that we’ve got each others’ backs through everything.

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