Raggamuffin @ Supreme Court Gardens, Perth

Next on the Festival Countdown is Raggamuffin! A relative newcomer to the festival scene, Raggamuffin was first brought to Australia in 2008, headlined by UB40, supported by The Wailers (of the “Bob Marley’s band” fame), Arrested Development and a bunch of other reggae bands that I’m not familiar with. I guess if you haven’t realised by now, Raggamuffin is a reggae festival. Once you’re at the venue, you can really smell the atmosphere and totally sway to the beat.

This time around, the festival was headlined by Ziggy Marley (eldest son of Bob Marley) and Eddy Grant, as well as Ali Campbell (formerly of UB40), Shaggy (Mr. Bombastic!!!), Arrested Development, Inner Circle (A La La La La Long) and Melbourne-band Bonjah.

Ziggy Marley @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens

I guess the catch is, if you are a child of the legendary Bob Marley, it’s inevitable that you’d have a Rastafarian life and do the Reggae thing. Ziggy Marley is one of many children who have continued the Marley legacy, along with Damian “Jr Gong”, Stephen, Julian and Ky-Mani Marleys. I’m completely unfamiliar with the reggae movement and I was genuinely surprised with the attention he got from a fair few thousand listeners in the crowd.

Eddy Grant @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens, Perth

And here is Eddy Grant. I just love the colours on-stage, especially of the reggae women’s costumes. Gosh, they were so lively… they were like a mini-reggae gospel group! And, the whole time, I had wondered if he had a huge afro underneath Eddy’s rasta hat.

Ali Campbell @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens, Perth

The only reason why I so dearly wanted to see Raggamuffin last year was to see UB40 perform. I grew up with the music of UB40, with cousins and family listening to it throughout the early 90s, even though most were just reggae covers of past songs. But, alas, the ticket price wasn’t really worth it and most media was knocked back from the event. Very soon after the final leg in Perth, Ali Campbell announced that he will split from UB40 to pursue a solo career. I was never going to see UB40 ever again…

… well who would have thought - going solo is just another reason to tour! ”Do you like my new band?”, he said. Just look at him, he’s such a player! And he satisfied all fans by singing loved UB40 songs.

Shaggy @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens, Perth Shaggy @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens, Perth

“I’m Mr. Boombastic /say me fantastic / touch me in my back she says I’m Mr Rooooooooo…mantic!” Can you remember during the late-90s/early-00s when Shaggy reached his peak? It was probably the most irritating time for me back in high-school. Mr. Shaggy has come a long way since then, I think? Anyway, while he played out all the hits like Angel, Mr. Bombastic, It Wasn’t Me and Hey Sexy Lady, it seemed like that was all that was performed. Drawn out instrumentals and ample crowd faffing… I don’t think it mattered. That’s all that we wanted to hear. And it was fuckin’ Bombastic! All of his guest singers were there too!

Arrested Development @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens, Perth

When I say Arrested Development, what would you think? The former TV series, or “IIIIIIIIIIII am everyday people”? Call me ignorant, but I never realised these guys sang that song! A fellow photographer, Daniel Wilkins (best Perth photog ever) kept trying to jog my memory of Mr. Wendall too, but it never worked despite it being his all time favourite song in high-school. He tells me this old man is a part of the band and all he does is dance and be cool.

Arrested Development @ Raggamuffin 2009, Supreme Court Gardens, Perth

By looking at this photo, you declare that you are not as awesome as Baba Oje.

That’s all for now. There are plenty more photos from Raggamuffin in my Flickr photoset. Check them out!