Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1099

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Giants of UK Reggae (Aswad + Maxi Priest): Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21

Angus Gaye - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW
Angus Gaye - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Tony 'Gad' Robinson - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 RE Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Angus Gaye - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Tony 'Gad' Robinson - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 RE Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Angus Gaye - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Tony 'Gad' Robinson - Aswad (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 RE Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW Maxi Priest (Giants of UK Reggae) Tutbury Castle, Staffordshire 30/7/21 REVIEW

Ah, the joys of outdoor concerts, how it's been missed. The long hiatus may have dimmed memories of watching music in the rain, but that all came flooding back in the days after restrictions were lifted.

But the Giants of UK Reggae show was to show that hardened British audiences don't have their spirits dampened when the music is good.
The venue was Tutbury Castle in Staffordshire, a medieval setting where Mary Queen of Scots was held captive in the 1500s. It's an impressive setting, with the stage set up in front of the remnants of the building.

After more than a year of being forced to stay at home, the crowd were more than ready to party, and British reggae icons Aswad were happy to oblige as Tony 'Gad' Robinson and Angus Gaye rolled back the years with "I A Soul Rebel", first released way back in 1976. Nearly two decades later their monster 1994 track "Warriors" would be the first record I ever bought. Although the song didn't get an outing at this show, there was a rich tapestry of reggae history, and it was fitting that the sun finally broke through the clouds as they performed crowd-pleaser "Shine".

With the post lockdown party well underway, it was time for Maxi Priest to bring things to a climax. At 60 his energy remains boundless, and his joy at being free to perform was clear for all to see. With the backing of a strong team of musicians he blew away the cobwebs, relishing seeing the crowd sing back "Wild World". In 1996 he released long-player "Man With The Fun", and that description stands the test of time.

The 10pm curfew cut short a show that could well have gone on until the early hours as he had an appreciative crowd dancing around the historic setting. Both artists have a busy few weeks coming up with shows across the country and remain well worth a watch.

PHOTOS: DAVE BURKE
Words Dave Burke

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