Carlton Pride & Mighty Zion
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Carlton Pride & Mighty Zion

San Marcos, Texas, United States | MAJOR

San Marcos, Texas, United States | MAJOR
Band R&B Funk




"Feature Artist: Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion"

The LIST: How’d you get into Music?
Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion: I got into music from my father, Charley Pride. Music was always on my mind and a part of my life. While I was a recording engineer at my father’s studio in 1990, I started having dreams about me playing reggae music on stage. So, one day I decided to act upon it and left Dallas to move to San Marcos, TX. I spread the word that I was starting a reggae band and that I was looking for musicians. Soon enough I started a reggae band and was playing music all over the country.I was born in Denver, CO. I lived in Montana and Chicago as a kid and then moved to Dallas, TX for High School where I lived until I made my move to San Marcos and into Music.

The LIST: What are some of your influences?
Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion: In Reggae, the greats, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Burning Spear and a lot of the 70’s and early 80’s reggae stars. In music in general, rock n roll and R & B from the 70’s influenced me greatly. How I do my business goes back to what I learned from my father and growing up around him in the music industry.

The LIST: What have you been up to recently?
Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion: Recently, we have been playing a lot of shows around Texas and surrounding states. Releasing our newest album on CDBaby for sale electronically. I have a record deal pending with EFM Records based in LA, which we are really excited about. I have been writing a lot lately. I have always liked to write conscious music pointing out the lies and twisted ways of the government, as well as, the woes of society, but my focus recently has been on positive solutions to issues and ideas to conquer our problems.

The LIST: What do you bring to the Industry?
Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion: We have a unique form of reggae mixed with funk, soul, jazz, and blues that is hard to categorize. It makes it difficult to explain because we use reggae as our foundation, but our music falls in so many other genres. Because of that sound, we stand out from other reggae bands when we play at venues and festivals because it is so different.

The LIST: What’s next for Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion?
Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion: I am continuing to write and working on developing our music. As well, we will be putting out a live CD this summer and will be headed back into the studio to record a new album this winter. To all of our fans that have been touched by our music, thank you and keep following us as there is much more to come out of Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion. Thank you to The LIST Magazine and to Miles for this article!


- The List Magazine

"Reggae Band Rocks Scores"

Posted: Sunday, January 18, 2009 12:00 am | Updated: 3:11 pm, Fri Apr 23, 2010.

By Dale Martin | 0 comments

You would not expect to hear reggae music in New Braunfels, a historic town with many German influences, but that’s exactly what fans heard on Friday night at Scores Sports Bar and Grill.

Carlton Pride & Zion Reggae Music, in town to record a live album and do a video shoot, chose Scores over a host of other venues they play on a regular basis. Located in the heart of downtown, Scores has become very popular with locals and visitors alike.

It’s also popular with area musicians, such as Pride.

“The place is great, and we love the sound we get here,” Pride said prior to his show. “The fans are very supportive and we just really love to play here.”

Publicist Trent Hanna acknowledged Pride’s opinion.

“The band loves it here, and the room has a good sound,” Hanna said. “We are recording and filming the show tonight for a live album and video. The owner of Scores, Hampton Eudy, and the manager, Ryan Smith, are really good to us and make a project like this very easy. Tonight we’ll record a lot of songs — some new, some old. Carlton is changing some lyrics, making the tunes more radio-friendly. The album and video will be very helpful in promoting the band.”

Playing live is something Pride lives for and thoroughly enjoys, he said.

“When I’m onstage playing to a good crowd, you get in a zone. Just like an athlete in a big game or an accountant working in his office crunching numbers, it gives you a purpose.”

Carlton Pride & Zion Reggae Music, a band based in San Marcos, features vocalist Carlton Pride, son of legendary country singer Charlie Pride, as well as New Braunfels resident Bryan Feltner on keyboard. The remainder of the band features Patrick Montgomery on percussion, Michael Van Horn on bass, Noel Vickers on sax and David “Rude Boy” Bowen on trombone.

Pride said he chose reggae music over the traditional country for which his father is known after being influenced by Bob Marley.

“I was about 15 when I first heard Bob Marley’s music, and it made a huge impression on me,” Pride said. “At the time I was more interested in producing and engineering music than playing it, but within a few years I had a guitar and was playing reggae. My girlfriend was attending college in San Marcos and when I came to visit, I fell in love with the city. I’ve been here ever since.”

Feltner’s road into the band led him away from the Texas Hill Country and back again.

“I met Carlton in 1995 when we both had bands in this area,” Feltner said. “Then I moved to Lake Tahoe and played surf music with legendary guitarist Dick Dale. When I returned 10 years later, I looked him up and he asked me to sit in with his band. This was in October of 2006, and we’ve been playing together ever since.”

All of the band’s members site Marley as a huge influence, one who inspired them to choose reggae over a more traditional format.

“I’m a huge Marley fan,” Pride said. “I had a ticket to see him on his final tour, but he died before it reached Austin.”

Pride doesn’t hide from the fact that he’s the son of a music legend, but it’s also a fact on which he doesn’t dwell.

“I know my dad has a lot of fans and people always want to talk to me about him, and that’s cool, but I also want to concentrate on this band and our music,” he said.

At Friday’s show, the band moved easily through a long list of original tunes and some carefully selected cover songs, including a reggae version of the Steve Miller classic “The Joker.” Pride’s original songs contain many references to love, happiness and optimism. From center stage he shared this thought about his music.

“My rule about music of any format is that if you listen to it sitting down, your rear-end is frowning. If you listen to it while you are standing up and dancing, your rear-end is smiling.”

- New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung


- Zion Reggae Music (1995)
- What You Need (2000) - Ruff Stuff Records
- Dub Rockers (2002)
- California Tracks* (recorded in 2002)
- Meaning of Life (Compilation album 2010)
* California Tracks was previously unreleased. EFM Records will be releasing the entire CD in 2011.



Carlton Pride’s Biography

Carlton Pride is the son of country music legend Charley Pride. Carlton started in the music industry as a recording engineer and sound tech for his father and various other artists. In 1995 Carlton left from Dallas, Texas for San Marcos to start his first reggae project: One. In 1996 the band changed their name to Zion and started playing the local circuit and headlined the Bob Marley Festival nationwide from 1996 to 2003 and continued to tour the US. In 2000, the band traveled to Jamaica to record the What You Need album with Ruff Stuff records at Bob Marley’s Tuff Gong Studios in Kingston. The Album was produced by Clive Hunt (Alpha Blondy, Peter Tosh, Culture) and featured Marley’s horn section, along with appearances from the bands of Bunny Wailer, Culture, Burning Spear, and Alpha Blondy. Among the most impressive guest appearance was Carlton’s father doing a father/son reggae duet of Charley’s hit single: Kiss An Angel Good Morning. Carlton has four studio releases: Zion Reggae Music (1995), What You Need (2000), Dub Rockers (2001), and California Tracks (recorded in 2002 and awaiting release from major record label). The latest album out is Meaning of Life (2010) which is a compilation of some of Carlton Pride's previous works.

Carlton and the Band are now in the studio working on their new album that should be released this Spring 2012.

Carlton’s show is an upbeat form of reggae with a dash of funk, soul, jam-band, and rock and roll that keeps a crowd on their feet and dancing from beginning to end. The spirit-filled lyrics leave concert goers uplifted, energized, enlightened, and inspired.

Carlton has shared the stage with The Wailers, Black Uhuru, Yellowman, Culture, String Cheese Incident, and was the first reggae act to grace the stage of the Grand Ole Opry.

You can find Carlton Pride and Mighty Zion on their official website, and on Facebook and Reverbnation