Words by Caleb Sweeting
The Strides have recently been throwing down their reggae sound touring the East Coast of Australia- but it won’t be long until we’ll be having our own taste of the Sydney nine-piece at this year’s WOMADelaide.
Fronted by reggae master Ras Roni, wiith Fijian MC Gzeus, Sierra Leonean and raga master Eddie Conteh, their music is a mixture of reggae-pop, modern dance hall and world beats with a hip-hop flavour.
YEWTH had a chat with one of the nine members, the man on the tenor saxophone, Mr Jeremy Rose, who says we can expect, “A lot of energy and great dancing,” at this year’s festival.
While they are a Sydney band Rose says having members such as frontman Ras Roni from Barbados (via London), means they are able to, “combine influences from all around the world.” While of course pleasing their fans at home in Australia.
“It’s really great, we’ve been building our audience here, for almost ten years and there’s a big reggae scene in Sydney, and that’s thanks to a few presenters that have been doing a good job in pushing reggae.”
The Strides have worked with the best currently representing the genre, including the late Bob Marley’s son, Julian, which the sax players describes as “humbling", to playing alongside someone with that historical connection with music.
While being in a band with nine members can be difficult at times, Rose says, “We try and be relatively adamant on keeping it together as a whole; everyone is definitely integral to the whole music picture.”
“We’re all about raising global conciseness a lot of our lyrics are talking about our connection with the land and about other issues like domestic violence, education and raising people’s awareness.”
Rose says at WOMAD we can expect hits from there last three albums including their latest LP The Youth, The Rich & The Fake and a few “surprise arrangements.”
“The thing with WOMAD is you can be guaranteed that all the artists are at a high caliber, we can’t wait.”
Buy your ticket to WOMAD here.