What’s a Reggae?

On Thursday, Reggae legends Toots and the Maytals played a show at the commodore ballroom. Showing my complete lack of knowledge surrounding all things reggae, I spent most of the day asking my coworkers what a Toot’s was. I got answers like ‘the coolest senior citizen you’ll ever see’ or ‘his bass player is the coolest man alive’. Tickets weren’t that bad, so I checked it out. I was very impressed.

The band played a 3.5 hours set with no breaks – starting at 10 and ending around 1:30.
Toots won a grammy last year for Best Reggae Album.
The bass player really is the coolest man alive.
The band speaks reggae, not English. I only recognized 5 words of English the entire night, and three of those were ‘yeah’, ‘oh yeah’, and ‘whoah’.
Being a reggae band does not prohibit you from playing guitar with your teeth.
There is no sense of tempo to a reggae concert. Some people swayed gently, others danced like they were at a rave, still others stood and convulsed at blistering speeds. It all felt appropriate.

The most impressive thing about the night though was when Toots managed to convince 80 odd college girls (and one guy, who thought he was a college girl) to get up on stage and dance. The man is 70 some odd years old. Most guys hit ‘creepy old man’ in their 30s – how this guy got that much attention from people who should rightly be his grand-grand children, I don’t know. If he’s not already, he should really be made the spokesman for Viagra.

In general, the concert was pretty good, but I’m a little biased because I’d never listened to his music before, so it was sorta hard to jam along. Actually, I had never really listened to reggae before. This would have been an awesome concert if I’d been more familiar with the tunes.

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