Roots of Creation
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Roots of Creation

Keene, New Hampshire, United States | SELF

Keene, New Hampshire, United States | SELF
Band World Reggae

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Oct
29
Roots of Creation @ Java Barn @ St Lawrence University

Canton, New York, USA

Canton, New York, USA

Oct
28
Roots of Creation @ Green Mountain College

Poultney, Vermont, USA

Poultney, Vermont, USA

Sep
19
Roots of Creation @ Camp Kee-Wanee

Greenfield, Massachusetts, USA

Greenfield, Massachusetts, USA

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Music

Press


By Richie Victorino

rvictorino@hippopress.com

When your roots are strong, you're bound to grow.

That's what a local reggae-style band, Roots of Creation, have realized.

But when four guys cram into a three-bedroom house to live, will their roots be torn to shreds? Will their lives quickly turn into an episode of the Real World where Bill sleeps with Jan, who in turn sleeps with Doug, who then sleeps with Bill?

Apparently not.

Wait a minute. Let me do my math here. Four guys, three bedrooms. So what's the deal?

"Yeah, our bass player, Stich, and our drummer, Mike D, share a room," said founding member Brett Wilson.

How unfortunate. but drummers and bassists should be close. Well, maybe not that close.

Since this incarnation of R.O.C. came to fruition two years ago, Wilson has watched his musical baby evolve into a responsible young adult.

"These past two years, I've seen the most growth for the band," Wilson said.

Creatively Wilson feels the music has never been tighter, which he chalks up to the constant practicing the band can commit to by living in the same home.

"But business-wise as well, growth has come," Wilson added.

Signing with a booking agency, starting a small record label and focusing on recording their second album are all accomplishments R.O.C. can feel proud of.

The band's first studio album, /The End of the Beginning/, was released in October, 2004, just as the then-quintet suddenly found themselves as a foursome.

"Now we're moving forward," Wilson said.

R.O.C. definitely has strong reggae inspirations. Song titles like "One Volcano" and "Another Song of Freedom," are obvious tributes to Bob Marley tracks, while songs like "Mt. Zion" show off R.O.C.'s ability to be creatively unique as a New Hampshire-based reggae band.

Wilson was raised in a home that followed Eastern culture and the "we are all one people" belief. He grew up listening to punk rock, and still listens to it.

"I like punk rock, the whole rebelling against the system" Wilson said. "But in a positive way. All people are one people."

R.O.C. will take some time off in the winter — though they'll play a few gigs around New Years — to record their second album. After which, they'll embark on a month-long tour up and down the East Coast.

*The music*

/The End of the Beginning/ is an entertaining mix of instrumentals, reggae flavors with great vocals, exploratory jams and energetic percussions.

A song like "6 AM" captures the essence of reggae; the ability to sit back, relax, smile and light up ... an incense stick.

But don't label these guys a bunch of reggae-wannabe hippies. They've got talent and variety. "Another Song of Freedom" shows off the band's ability to rap atop rock music, much like G. Love and Special Sauce.

You can listen to every song on /The End of the Beginning / at the band's website, www.rootsofcreation.com. Their website also allows you to download live shows, as does www.archive.org.

Wilson recommends downloading the Stone Church show, from Newmarket, N.H. You can buy the album at www.homegrownmusic.net, www.cdbaby.com, at Newbury Comics, Toadstool Bookstores in Milford and at live shows.

Roots of Creation is:

Brett Wilson, singer/songwriter/lead guitar; Mike Chadinha, drums/vocals/percussion; Ian Stich, bass/vocals; Tal Pearson, keyboard.

Upcoming local shows:

Sept. 15, 9 p.m. at the Stone Church located at 5 Granite St., Newmarket, N.H. 659-6321.

Sept. 21, 9 p.m. at The Courtyard, Lowell, Mass. located at 289 Central St., Lowell, Mass. (978) 458-8150. - The Hippo Press


UP AND COMERS

Bands You May Not Have Heard of Yet…But You Will!

By Rebecca Carter

October 2005 - We here at thePULSE are committed to giving local bands who are just under the radar, whot haven’t quite broken through yet, a little push. There’s a catch, though ~ we’ll only feature a band if they first nominate a band for the next issue, and so on. So check out this section to read more about some talented musicians who might just be the next big thing!

Here is a riddle for you. Who was born in 1999 and is already old enough to drink? Who has been touring all over New England for the last year, literally, laying down the smooth sounds of reggae, funk, and rock while being socially awake and politically aware?
Who is so dedicated to their work that they started their own record label to produce it? The Roots of Creation, that’s who.

Originally from New Hampshire, these guys quickly found a core audience in Central New England, especially in Worcester showcases like the Wormtown’s Battle of the Bands and the Wormtown Music Festival. Since then, they’ve become kingpings on the happening Jam scene, setting themselves apart with music that is fused with some strict social values and a desire to save the world. Superheroes? Maybe a little. Their sound is reminiscent of Sublime and Phish, but fused with the hard edges of social commentary on which Rage Against the Machine built their own legend. Playing for AIDS walks, food drives, and peace and social justice events, they keep it real not only by bolstering the spirits of their easy going listeners, but also by putting their money where their mouths (and obviously hearts) are – into charitable and social causes.

I’m sure that we have all seen a band whose musicianship is really stellar but their sound is barely discernible from the millions of other bands that sound just like them. Rest assured, Roots is not that band. Over the years they have built their following on the fact that they have made a sound for themselves that is unique and unapologetically catchy. Its fusions of style blend seamlessly while carefully avoiding sounding like a knock-off. Brett Wilson leads up the band as singer/writer/lead guitarist/ and deals with the business end of being part of an up-and-coming success story, keyboardist Tal Pearson adds his smooth styling to the funky mix , drummer Mike Chadinha busts out the rhythm, and Ian Stitch is a one man bass house.

Check out their website at http://www.rootsofcreation.com/ for free music and to find out about their upcoming shows. You can also get your hands on their CD, but keep your eyes open for new recordings ~ including possibly a live recording within the next year. Brett promises that “…you will not be disappointed if you buy the CD or come see us live, it’s a great time and you will be part of a growing community of people who love to party while still being socially conscious.” So go ahead, get into it!




thePulse - 508-756-5006 - Pagio Inc, 84 Winter Street, Worcester MA 01604
Editor: Lara Dean (ldean@pagioinc.com), Sales: David Simone (dsimone@pagioinc.com) Pulse Photos: Michael Belsito (mbelsito@pagioinc.com) Art Director: Justin Perry (jperry@pagioinc.com) - The Pulse


Music — Roots of Creation sing songs of freedom

Roots of Creation sing songs of freedom

By Seth Hoy

Hollis jam band playes Solarfest


How fly can four white guys from New Hampshire really be?

What could they know of traditional reggae music—back-beats, rhythm or a reggae baseline?

Singer/songwriter and lead guitarist, Brett Wilson, doesn’t worry about authenticity anymore. Wilson heads up a Reggae funk rock jam band out of Hollis, called Roots of Creation. Roots of Creation will play Solarfest at Keene State College on Saturday, April 23.

“The reason we get away with it,” Wilson said, “is because we don’t play straight up Reggae. We’re not imitators—we’re doing it our own way. We mix Reggae, funk and rock, so I guess you could call it reggae jam rock.”

“I am conscious of our authenticity,” Wilson continued, “but it’s nothing I worry about. We recently played with an original Reggae band from Jamaica, Lamb’s Bread, who have been playing for 19 years. I asked them how they felt about us. They said, ‘You’re music is from the heart, don’t worry about the race thing.’ So I don’t think about it too much. I’m not trying to copy anyone else’s style—I draw my influences from different people”

Wilson, 23, started Roots of Creation back in 1999 when he and bandmates were still in high school. Admittedly a Phish fan, Wilson grew up listening to Bob Marley, Sublime and Dispatch. But perhaps Wilson’s biggest influence was the reggae concerts a Jamaican family friend took him to as a kid.

“I grew up on that stuff,” Wilson said. “And I like bands that mix it up like Sublime did. I love hip hop, jambands, reggae, punk, rock—that’s what I wanted to do—mix all my favorite styles.”

With reggae-influenced chord progressions, percussion and melody’s in place, Wilson focuses a lot of energy on creating socially conscious and spiritually meaningful lyrics—a message Wilson believes is devoid of today’s MTV culture. Take the song, “Universal Soldier” off their first full length album The End of the Beginning (Bombshelter, October 2004) which preaches a message of peace and love for soldiers fighting in Iraq. While Wilson believes it’s fun to sing about love and relationships, it’s important to sing about issues that matter.

“There are a few classic songs which take personal experiences and turns them universal,” Wilson said, “like Marley’s “Redemption.” But then there are songs people are afraid to sing. Take Kanye West’s “Jesus walks” for example. That was ballsy to put out a song about Jesus. It’s not perceived as cool to do that, but it’s important to uplift the people. We live in a negative sarcastic materialistic society that’s starving for some form of spirituality and social uplifting.”

Roots of Creation caters mostly toward the 18 to 25 year old college crowd—the young, fun, idealistic and yes, party crowd who like to have a good time. But don’t be deceived by the dirty hippie jam band hackey-slacker persona, Wilson is trying to promote a less stoned more active image of the jamband arena.

“I get angry at that segment at that population,” Wilson said. “They’re trying to be rebellious do-gooders. But when I check them out at big events, they’re throwing bottles on ground, taking drugs and not doing anything to help anyone. It’s frustrating, but there are some people trying to do stuff and be positive.”

If you haven’t heard them before, Roots of Creation plays Harlow’s Pub in Peterborough, Stone’s Church in New Market and the Barley Pub in Dover. Roots of Creation members are buying a house together in Peterboro this summer before they begin their tour from New England to Georgia. For more information, visit www.rootsofcreation.com.

— Seth Hoy

- The Hippo Press, Nashua NH


I've grown a bit disappointed with myself, to be quite honest. Three good reviews in a row is not in my character, but Rise Up by Roots of Creation makes the third straight solid album I've received for review. And these white boys make for convincing Rastafarians, were it not for the lack of pigment.

Roots of Creation is a damn good reggae band making damn good reggae music in an era where the genre has more or less fallen off the map. Bob Marley's Legend has sold upwards of twelve million copies, and novelties such as Matisyahu are generating interest, but for the real roots we here in America are left wanting. ROC play with a true heritage and yet are still adventurous; they are everything reggae should be and elude predictability. Everything flows smoother than water and, even if you're a dipshit conservative who hates the idea of human freedom, the music is simply appealing to the ear of man. I found myself getting lost in the balance and fluidity of these grooves more often than not; "Babylon" feels considerably less than five minutes in length with its sonic peaks and valleys.

The lyrics are equally strong. Although reggae and dub are simply not themselves without songs of innocence and carefree love, the politics are very subtle and sensible. The constant drone of "Babylon will fall" brings a smile to my anarchist face, and it's all politics with a small "p." Nothing is forced or ambiguous in dynamic, and everything is seen from the angle of the populace en masse. It's the sort of riotous feeling that stirs up one's soul, causing people to pump their fists worldwide and shouting "Hell yeah!" That's right, the Sixties are back, seventy-two minutes at a time. I especially liked the operetta of "Peace, Love and Music," an accurate retelling of Woodstock and its whorishly commercialized reincarnations of '94 and '99, in addition to the packaging and profiteering of revolutionary momentum everywhere. Such is reggae, such is music, such is life.

Some key tracks include "Rise up," "Babylon," "Peace, Love, and Music," and "Legalize and Tax It." Roots of Creation are: Brett Wilson (Vox/Guitar), Tal Pearson (Keyboards/Melodica), Mike Chadinha (Drums/Percussion/Vox), and Jey Felitto (Bass/Vox).

- Russ the Punk

http://www.rocknworld.com/features/07/RootsofCreation.shtml - www.Rocknworld.com/Russ the Punk


RELIX MAGAZINE "ON THE VERGE" ARTICLE:

ROOTS ROCK REGGAE

Since 1999, Roots of Creation, a New Hampshire-based quartet, has skillfully mingled bouncy dancehall beats with political overtones. The result: reggae funk rock that erupts on stage, severing artist-audience barriers while summoning fans to join them in an awakening.“Music is the key to raising consciousness and spreading positive vibes,� says Brett Wilson (guitar, vocals). “Music has a power to connect people in a way nothing else can.� This belief motivated the band’s participation in several benefit concerts including the Peace and Justice Rally on the Boston Common, Save Sudan, Bands for Cans and Strangers Helping Strangers. Their do-gooder energy has seen the band jamming with Sam Kininger, Gordon Stone and membersof the John Brown’s Body horns section. Rise Up, their latest, showcases these magnetic collaborations. “By 2010 we will be headlining Bonnaroo, touring internationally and have sold 1,000,000 CDs on our own label, Bombshelter Records,� says Wilson. “If that doesn’thappen, I will be happy with just continuing to give people songs to sing along with, lyrics to reflect on and music they can dance their asses off to.� www.rootsofcreation.com


UP AND COMERS
Bands You May Not Have Heard of Yet�But You Will!
�Originally from New Hampshire, these guys quickly found a core audience in Central New England, especially in Worcester showcases like the Wormtown�s Battle of the Bands and the Wormtown Music Festival. Since then, they�ve become kingpings on the happening Jam scene, setting themselves apart with music that is fused with some strict social values and a desire to save the world. Superheroes? Maybe a little. Their sound is reminiscent of Sublime and Phish, but fused with the hard edges of social commentary on which Rage Against the Machine built their own legend. Playing for AIDS walks, food drives, and peace and social justice events, they keep it real not only by bolstering the spirits of their easy going listeners, but also by putting their money where their mouths (and obviously hearts) are � into charitable and social causes.�
bands You May Not Have Heard of Yet�But You Will!
Rebecca Carter-The Pulse-Worchester, MA



The End of the Beginning
Roots of Creation (CD Review)
"Tribute to Gary," layering taut funky basslines under deft keys, "Hard Dub," an amalgam of growling, distorted guitar over an aggressive dub scaffolding and spacey , shifting atmosphere, certainly suggest as much. "Fusion Illusion," as advertised, unearths a surprising jazz competency in its evocation of an intimate Village jam session."
--BretGladstone-www.jambands.com

�The End of the Beginning is an entertaining mix of instrumentals, reggae flavors with great vocals, exploratory jams and energetic percussions. A song like "6 AM" captures the essence of reggae; the ability to sit back, relax, smile and light up ... an incense stick. But don't label these guys a bunch of reggae-wannabe hippies. They've got talent and variety. "Another Song of Freedom" shows off the band's ability to rap atop rock music, much like G. Love and Special Sauce.�
---Richie Victorino-The Hippo Press

R.O.C.'s excellent mix of Reggae and Rock combined with a relentless touring schedule, exciting live shows, and youthful energy have helped them to shine the true light of their music to eager new audiences at colleges, clubs, and festivals across the east coast.
---Phil Simon-Simon Says Booking

�Roots of Creation caters mostly toward the 18 to 25 year old college crowd�the young, fun, idealistic and yes, party crowd who like to have a good time. But don�t be deceived by the dirty hippie jam band hackey-slacker persona, Wilson is trying to promote a less stoned more active image of the jamband arena.�
� Seth Hoy-Hippo Press


BOSTON PARTY FOR LOCAL BAND
�The End of the Beginning� is an amalgam of old school reggae, Bob Marley style, with insightful lyrics, jazz infused funk jams and straight up rock. While the musicality of the album is creative and energetic, with danceable rhythms and searing guitar riffs, the songs� messages show the listener how spiritual these guys are.�
---Rick Dumont-Hollis/Brookline Journal

SCENE AND HEARD
"The Roots of Creation, who play The Stone Church in Newmarket with the Sam Kinninger Band on Friday and then the Barley Pub in Dover on Wednesday, are not the same as Roots Nation (which plays The Stone Church on Saturday), despite having similar roots in reggae. Roots of Creation is said to "...effortlessly blend their original reggae-riddims (roots/dancehall/dub) with rock/funk/jazz." "
-J.L. Stevens-seacoastonline.com

NO SUN NO PROBLEM FOR SOLARFEST
"The last band of the evening Roots of Creation, took Solar Fest into the realm of reggae and funk...They scrambled together hints of Sublime and Bob Marley with a harder rhythm section. However, when it was time for soloing, the band was all funk.

Keyboardist Tal Pearson tinkered out groovy accents as Wilson smoothly melted together rock and funk solos. From there, they took on the presence of a jam band.�
-�No sun no problem for Solar Fest�
Ben Coutu-Keene Equinox


All's fair at this Bangor festival
�Roots of Creation, who started in New Hampshire in 1999, mixes reggae, funk, rock and improv with socially conscious lyrics in its original songs. Its lineup has changed through the years, but founding member Brett Wilson, its singer, songwriter and lead guitarist, still remains. Its self-titled debut album is due out this fall.�
Bangor Daily News


ROOTS OF CREATION LIVE RECORDING PARTY
�Wilson writes the lyrics that speak to the open minded. From their song �Peace, Love and Music� which talks about the failed attempts to recreate the feeling of the original Woodstock to �Another Song of Freedom�, Wilson doesn�t pull any punches with those he thinks is doing society wrong.
In �Peace, Love and Music� Wilson rails �Then in 94 they tried it again but they pulled it off like a corporate rock whore chargin� way too much cash without the same spirit they had the last bash Peace, Love and Music wasn�t made with a fist.�
Putting lines like those to a funky highly energized beat makes one think about what music is supposed to be all about, especially since the corporate money-grabbing establishment has put some black marks on artistic expression recently.
But Roots are putting out the message that having fun, letting the feeling of fine jams be absorbed into every pore and perhaps even adjusting one�s thinking is what�s important.
That philosophy about spreading happiness and peace through music is not just a statement. Roots are putting it into practice, while at the same time remembering their basic nutritional needs.
---Rick Dumont-Hollis/Brookline Journal

With reggae-influenced chord progressions, percussion and melody�s in place, Wilson focuses a lot of energy on creating socially conscious and spiritually meaningful lyrics�a message Wilson believes is devoid of today�s MTV culture. Take the song, �Universal Soldier� off their first full length album The End of the Beginning (Bombshelter, October 2004) which preaches a message of peace and love for soldiers fighting in Iraq. While Wilson believes it�s fun to sing about love and relationships, it�s important to sing about issues that matter.
�Seth Hoy-Hippo Press

.Roots of Reggae-Four piece band expores "one people" philosophy
�When your roots are strong, you're bound to grow.�

�Wilson was raised in a home that followed Eastern culture and the "we are all one people" belief. He grew up listening to punk rock, and still listens to it.

"I like punk rock, the whole rebelling against the system" Wilson said. "But in a positive way. All people are one people."
- Roots of Reggae-Four piece band expores "one people" philosophy
---Richie Voictorino-The Hippo Press

Roots of Creation have carefully carved a unique sound that brings together America’s love of guitar solos, five-minute space jams and patchouli with some very dread rhythms. In the process, this Boston-based band have struck upon what could be considered America’s contribution to reggae music (well, the Brits had lover’s rock and two-tone and Canada has… Snow): the Jam-reggae hybrid. There are other bands dipping a toe into this sort of
thing but none that have been able to do it so convincingly and with such infectious results.
- Brent Hagerman, Exclaim - various


FPC students made a film after following around the band "Roots of Creation"

by Juliana Spence
Exchange Staff Writer

A student-made ethnography about the local reggae-jam, fun-rock band Roots of Creation, (ROC) will be shown publicly on Wednesday May 3rd at 6 p.m. in the Fitzwater Lecture Hall.

Seniors Eddie Westdal and Soren Wills followed around ROC for seven months "examining the culture in and around the band." They videotaped 15 shows including the coffeehouse performance that ROC gave at Franklin Pierce College on April 13th. Westdal said, "The crowd at the FPC show was probably the most rocking crowd I?ve seen in my taping, besides Harlow?s which is like hometown (for the band)."

For Westdal, who is a graduating anthropology major, the ethnography became is senior thesis project. "It was really interesting studying a culture that I can identify with as my own," Westdal said. Westdal and Wills went on a four-day tour with the band to capture much of footage that is used in the video.

Brett Wilson, the lead guitarist and singer for ROC, said, "I was excited to capture moments of us playing to look at and analyze and then to have something to look back on later in life."

Westdal and Wills spent many hours editing down over 4200- minutes of footage to create a 1hour and 15 minute film. Featured on the video are interviews with all the band members talking about the history of the band, fans telling their opinions, and studio-recording footage from the making of ROC?s new album. Westdal does voice-overs that keeps it moving. "The video is a journey through my research," Westdal said.

After spending all of spring break editing the video everyday for at least 12 hours, Westdal said, "I learned that doing a video wasn?t going to be easier than writing a thesis paper."

All the music in the video was recorded live at the shows by John Sulkala, a senior fine art major, who accompanied Wills and Westdal during the filming.

The video ends with Ian Stitch, the former bassist of the band leaving and Jay Felitto stepping in to take his place. "An interesting thing to catch is the process of Stitch leaving and Jay coming and how that affected the music the difference of before and after," Westdal said.

For Wills, a Mass Comm major concentrating in Media Production, the video became the basis of an independent study with Professor Zrzavy. He said, "My original inspiration was making the video 6AM (a ROC song) that I worked on with Steve Maynard for Advanced Media Production last semester with Prof. Tullio."

Wills then bought an editing system that his uncle, a professional film editor in Boston, taught him how to use. "The video gave me a really a great chance to learn everything about editing because I had to teach Eddie so he could help." Wills has one about 20 smaller projects, but he said, "This is the longest yet." Wills and Westdal borrowed all the equipment used during the filming from the Fitzwater Center Depot'

Wilson said, "I think that they did a great job and we?re going to be taking the video and putting it in our electronic press kit and maybe putting it as a bonus on our next CD."

This was the first time Westdal researched a culture and made an ethnography. One thing he said he learned about the ROC culture is that, "At every show there are people who are going to dance."

...Wills and Westdal said they are both excited and nervous for the video to be shown. They have invited the band, as well as the public, to the screening which will be at 6 p.m. on Wednesday May 3rd in the Fitzwater Center lecture hall' Roots of Creation music can be heard at www.rootsofcreation.com.
- by Juliana Spence/Exchange Staff Writer


Rise Up With The Roots Of Creation
Billy Joes

What is it about good Reggae that makes fat white boys like me want to
get up and dance? Okay, okay, I'll save you from any more disturbing
mental images and get on with the review.

A Reggae based jam band, Roots of Creation has been touring New
England since 1999 and now with the release of their second CD., Rise
Up they're on tour again and headed south loaded to the hilt with
lyrics, riffs, and Rock influenced Reggae aimed at me and you with
upcoming shows as far south as Arlington and Richmond, Virginia,
Atlantic Beach, North Carolina, and Kill Devil Hills, NC.



Listening to the CD., I was especially impressed by the balance of
musical styles and lyrics with a strong message of peace, love, the
lives of the working class, and social justice issues that probably
won't win them any points with the Bushs, Clearchannels, Sonys, and
Rupert Murdochs of the world but need to be said anyway. Man, does
this stuff ever take me back!

And the music is mastery, poetry set to music, lyrics filled with
fire, quick changes, and variety rarely heard in Reggae. Did I mention
the Hip-hop, Punk, and Soul influences?

Imagine a world where music dictated to politicians instead of the
other way around, and the battle of the bands was as bad as war ever
got. A Reggae band from New England? Yeah, that's what I thought too,
but the spirit of Bob Marley lives on in the Roots Of Creation. - bloggingpoet.com


RASTA RECALIBRATION
by Casey Rea

Boston-Based ROOTS OF CREATION are the latest in the long line of bands to combine elements of reggae and improvisational rock. Their new CD, RISE UP, features both guitar crunch and skank-friendly rhythms. The band makes an appearance at Nectar's on Saturday, Sept. 30th, with Riding Shotgun.
With his white-soul croon and confident machismo, front man Brett Wilson bears some similarities to deceased Sublime chief Bradley Nowell. Bassist Jay Felitto has a great tone, a chest rumbling, dub style splat. The band delivers a solid blend that will no doubt satisfy those looking for deftly played progressive reggae.
Oh, yeah, Vermont's own Gordon Stone makes an appearance on the record. Whaddya bet he's at the show? - Seven days/Burlington VT


Nightlights
Upholding freedom through song
By Dave Madeloni, Special to The Eagle
Thursday, October 05
The roots of Roots Of Creation began growing seven years ago into the musical soil of southern New Hampshire when guitarist/vocalist Brett Wilson was still in high school. "I was into the jamband scene but saw a void in good songwriting that actually had something to say" he recalled in a recent email exchange. "Then I went to Franklin Pierce College where I met keyboardist Tal Pearson and drummer Mike Chadinha. The connection was obvious and instant."
That musical chemistry took the reggae/rock band — who just released "Rise Up," their second studio effort, last month and will be hosting a CD release party at La Cocina on Saturday night — to a new level. Wilson recalled a

Root of Creation
show from an unusual venue that exemplified the reformed group's ability to connect with an audience. "We played at an infamous trailer called Trailer No. 9. We would pack in 120-plus people into this trailer made for four people to live in. It would sway and shake to the rhythm of the music. There were girls dancing on tables drinking boxes of wine and we felt like rock stars!"
After graduating two years ago, the band decided to make a determined go of it, starting their own label, buying a van, and taking their ever-evolving, improvisational blend of reggae, funk, dub, jazz, rock, hip-hop and spiritual socially-conscious lyrics on the road, touring the south and playing more than 150 gigs last year alone.
"Rise Up" documents and expands on the foursome's sound, with guest turns from Gordon Stone, formerly of Phish, who adds pedal steel to "Made For Me," Soulive's Sam Kininger laying down some soulful sax on Otis Redding's "That's How Strong My Love Is," C-Money of John Brown's Body adds some trumpet flourishes while Jamaican Dub poet Ras Howard Henry contributes some of his wordplay to the record.
Wilson talked about those contributions and his vision for the new CD. "All the special guests we have on our record we met on the road. I have been fans of all of them before playing with them and it was great honor to make music together with all of them.
"I have been planning this record for a long time and knew I wanted people I respected and who could bring a fresh original flavor that would make this album special and make it something that our fans would want."
For the most part, it has been Roots of Creation's synergetic live shows that brought those fans into the fold. "Musically, we're much tighter," said drummer Mike Chadinha. "In the last year we've learned how to read each other on stage much better then before. We're able sit in the pocket better and really lock in."
Tal Pearson, whose keyboards bring depth and color to ROC's sound added, "We try to deliver a solid rock 'n' roll show and take it to places, chang it up every show and make people move. Mike brings some thunder with precision and Brett the overall musical shape and mold. Jay gives us the deep end ... and vast knowledge."
Pearson was referring to their newest member, bassist Jay Felitto, who added, "The opportunity to give people something positive and have it make their life better in some way even if just for a couple of moments is the greatest part."
Wilson agreed, citing ROC's socially conscious approach. "We all have a responsibility to our society to help uphold our freedoms, justice, the pursuit of happiness, the creation of new ideas and the ability to express yourself to show people that they are not alone in the trials and tribulations of the human condition."
La Cocina is located at 140 Wahconah St., Pittsfield. For more information, call (413) 499-6363. - Berkshire Eagle


riddim nation
Roots of Creation rise up with a new CD
by Jon Nolan

Having a band is hard work if you do it right. So far, Brookline N.H.’s
Roots of Creation are keeping all the plates spinning, managing and
booking themselves successfully, while somehow finding the time to
record a fine sophomore CD, “Rise Up.” Formed in 1999 by
guitarist/vocalist Brett Wilson, the band went through a few lineup
changes before establishing the current and (rock) steady lineup of
Wilson, Tal Pearson (keys, melodica), Mike Chadinha (drums, percussion,
SPDS Sampler, backup vocals) and Jay Felitto (bass). Ian Stitch plays
bass on the album.
“Rise Up” was recorded at N.H.’s impressive and gear-laden Studio
Metronome with Pete Peloquin manning the mixing board. Peloquin has
been around the block a few times. Oasis, The Pixies, New Order, The
Hives, and even (gasp) Marky Mark have benefited from his services,
among a laundry list of others. The packaging is top notch, too—a
glossy digipak adorned with impressive illustrations designed by Nick
Lamper of Burlington, Vt.. The band hired a publicist to push the disc
to college radio and press, sent promo CDs to 500 street team members
across the country, and are on the Relix Magazine CD compilation that
goes out with every magazine (all 100,000 of them) in the month of
November. Roots of Creation aren’t screwing around, and when the title
track kicks off the CD with band leader Brett Wilson’s voice saying
“Rise up, everybody rise up yeah / Won’t you hear these words?” it’s an
order.
The music is reggae, sort of. It shares some of the grit of Sublime as
the guitars (supplied by Wilson) grind on occasion when they aren’t
floating on beds of silky echoes like on “Babylon.” Keyboardist Pearson
hammers on a clavinet before the band kicks into “Dubomb,” when drummer
Chadinha and album bassist Stitch find the pocket of course. The band
proceeds to flat out rock, throwing in the occasional half time reggae
feel and then taking the music to epic heights sure to please the jam
crowd, but without alienating the ska fans. Soulive horn player Sam
Kininger lends his saxophone talents to “That’s How Strong My Love Is”
(a song which further supports the Sublime comparisons) and Gordon
Stone plays pedal steel on the Ben Harper-esque “Made for Me.” The CD
makes swell listening for any who likes reggae, jam, ska, roots rock.
We caught up with the guys to see what’s in store for ROC—besides their
show at The Stone Church on Thursday, Oct. 5.

It seems like it’s been a long road thus far for ROC How does it feel to
finally have a solid line-up and a second full-length CD out after six
years of touring?
Brett Wilson (guitar, vocals): (It’s) such a relief. When I look back on
things, I feel like I’ve climbed a giant mountain. But when I look into
the future, there’s so much more to accomplish and my mountain is
just a tiny hill in the scheme of things. I’m really happy with the
album all around.
Tal Pearson (keys, melodica): It’s comforting and satisfying ... but
also challenging, ’cus now it’s like, how far can we take it? At least
we’re used to touring by now.

What was it like to record at Studio Metronome with Pete Peloquin? That
place seems like it’s pretty decked out with good gear and more
importantly, good ears.
Wilson: Pete is the man! We’ve been friends for a long time, I interned
at the studio while I was in college and was recording our first CD,
“The End of the Beginning.” He has a great ear for production!
Pearson: (It was) inspiring, because there were so many tools to work
with there, almost too many options. It just took a little focus to not
get carried away, and just record our songs the best we could.

Your music is a mish-mash of stuff: reggae, rock, jazz and funk. I’m
sure the jam crowd welcomed you with open arms, but does it ever seem
odd to be playing a style of music like reggae in such a cold climate?
Wilson: Our brand of reggae is much heavier and is played mostly in
minor keys so it gives off a different vibe than that awful resort-area
type stuff. The jam crowd does seem to be the most receptive. It’s nice
to be a part of a scene with so many great musicians. The fact that
every show is different, and we improvise a bunch helps a lot, too. We
also get a lot of love at colleges/private high schools and from
ska/punk fans. I’m happy that we’re gaining respect in the reggae scene
for bringing something new to the table.

Tell me about making the record. How long did it take? Was there a
lyrical or musical focus point that guided the work?
Pearson: (It took a ) very long time. We knew the songs we were working
with for the record, and sort of what we wanted the outcome to be. At
the same time we were really finding a “sound” for the band, our own
identity so to speak, so that certainly tied in with the product we
were trying to make. I think the record does a great job of capturing
where the band was at, at a particular point in time.
Chadinha: We started tracking in early January of 2006. We wanted make
the album seem like a live show, while still having the advantage of
studio effects. That’s why a lot of the songs segue into each other.

What’s the plan for the band with the release of “Rise Up?” Extended
touring? World domination? TRL?
Wilson: We’re hitting all of our favorite Northeast venues in September
and October, then touring down south in November. World Domination
happens in December. I hate Carson Daly!

Which one of you is the band’s whipping boy, the one who catches the
most good natured flack in the van/on the road?
Pearson: Ha ha… New bass player Jay still has some friendly hazing to
endure. And our roadie Soren has at least eight nicknames.
Wilson: It’s me a lot of the time. They like to get back at their
“fearless leader,” as Jay likes to call me.

Songs like “Legalize It & Tax It” seem pretty straight up, “Peace, Love
and Music...” drives a point at the Woodstock festivals in the 1990s,
and then there’s the provocative album title. How do politics and
philosophy fit into your music?
Wilson: Everything in my life is an inspiration. I was brought up
vegetarian in a small southern New Hampshire town by a single mother
from the ’60s whose is an idealist, worldly and very spiritual. She
brought me up with the belief that all people are equal, that humans
are essentially good, to treat animals/plants with the same respect,
and that all religions are paths to the same place. She was into SYDA
Yoga, which is based in Hinduism. I traveled to India when I was very
young and a lot of my summers and vacation were spent at meditation
centers and retreats.
I also have a rebelious/militant/anti-establishment side that has been
influenced by Peter Tosh, Malcolm X, The Clash (and punk rock in
general), Rage Against The Machine, etc. This started in my teen-age
days (for obvious reasons) but has not gone away.

What’s your favorite musical memory and why?
Mike Chadinha (drums): The peace and justice rally on Boston Common.
There was an estimated 10,000-30,000 people. Not only was it a good
memory for the cause, but, obviously the amount of people.
Pearson: The first time I listened to “Mellon Collie and the Infinite
Sadness” by the Smashing Pumpkins. It was at that moment (In early
September of 1996) that I knew rock and roll was for me, and that I
wanted to play in a band. My parents have been disappointed ever since!

What’s in the band van CD player or iPod right now?
Pearson: Live Roots of Creation, unfortunately. To see what we did right
and wrong. - The Wire, portsmouth NH


Discography

1. Go Back to Your Roots E.P. (2000) OUT OF PRINT
2. Live at the Jaffery House (2001) OUT OF PRINT
3. Another Song of Freedom E.P. (2002/2003)
OUT OF PRINT
4. The End of the Beginning (2004) 2,000+ SOLD!!!
- Tracks #5 and 6 on "The End Of The Beginning": "Another Song of Freedom" and "Baby" get airplay on 92.5 The River, NPR, and college radio across the nation.

5. Live @ The Stone Church
Limited edition of 1000- OUT OF PRINT (2005)

6. RISE UP! (September 2006)
Played on internet, college, and indie radio stations across the country

7. Live Volume #1 (June 2008)
Charted on the www.jambands.com radio charts.

Photos

Bio

ROOTS OF CREATION
"The Reggae-Jam Dubtronica Hybrid"

Bolstered by a sense of it's own colorful history and urged onward by the promise of a fruitful future, Roots of Creation approaches it's 4th year of full-time touring having evolved into a musical force of nature. With a hard-working ethic and an arsenal of upbeat, substantial songs, Roots of Creation have ascended to the top of their profession by putting their fans first and doing business with focus and respect. Writers, DJs, venue owners, and booking agents alike have joined ROC's steadily growing army of fans in heaping praise upon the New Hampshire quartet, and not just for the music - the band has forged a unique connection with their listeners that provides concert attendees with a highly personal experience. They also walk the walk when it comes to social and environmental activism. Having raised money for many causes.

The sound captured on their latest album, Live Vol. 1, is the result of years of absorbing diverse influences into their bedrock of "jam-meets-reggae." The latest style to work its way into the ROC sound comes courtesy in part of new bassist Chris Beam, whose background in electronic/trance music helped facilitate the band's recent shift incorporating lengthier dance-driven explorations, which are still spiked with ROC's own special dub/rock/reggae flavor. Beyond the amazing music contained within, and in keeping with their history of conscious efforts, the album's packaging is 70% post-consumer product recycled cardboard.

There's no better representation of ROC's recently perfected, bigger, badder sound than the fast-paced experience of Live Vol. 1, released by Harmonized Records on June 24th. From addictive reggae pop songs to consciously charged roots rhythms and berzerk electronic improvisations, the grace and precision with which ROC execute their bass-heavy works is overwhelming. Their roots are tinged with rock, their rock brushed with electronica, and they're as likely to dash off into a 10-minute guitar-led groove as they are to perform righteous vocal songs that resonate like the roots-rock classics of old. From the steamy opener "Oh Lord" to the extended jams on "Void" and "Proggae," both favorites from their critically acclaimed Rise Up album, there's an urgency and dedication to perfection unmatched by other live releases.

Besides signing with Harmonized, Roots of Creation's most recent praises came in the form of sponsorship from the well-known outdoor sports company Eastern Mountain Sports, who obviously see a connection between ROC's diverse, active fanbase and their products. In 2007, Rise Up garnered the band a nomination for Best World Music Act at the Boston Music Awards. On top of that, the band have recently found themselves in high-class musical company as they shared stages and audiences with artists such as chart-topping rapper Lupe Fiasco, reggae legends like Culture, The Wailers, Israel Vibration, Pato Banton, Toots, and Yellowman, plus well-known acts from all over the musical map such as Matisyahu, Slightly Stoopid, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, and Melvin Sparks.

ROOTS OF CREATION have rocked many a College and Private High School campus such as...

UNCA Ashville NC, Eastern Carolina University, NCSU, Virginia Commonwealth University, Warren Wilson, Franklin Pierce University, Southern NH University, Plymouth State University, Keene State College, University of Vermont, Green Mountain College, Colby College, UMaine Orono, Unity College, Berkshire Academy, The Kent School, Vassar College, Bridgewater State, UMass Amherst, North County Community College, St. Lawrence University, and Simons Rock College of Bard, to name a few.

...Shared the stage with national acts such as...

The Wailers, Pato Banton, Eek-a-mouse, RZA, Bassnectar, Tom Morello, Les Claypool, Barington Levy, EOTO, Conspirator, Toots and the Maytals, Matisyahu, Badfish, Paranoid Social Club, Zox, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Max Creek, Dubconscious, Melvin Sparks, SOJA (Soldiers of Jah Army) and Strangefolk. They have also shared the stage with members of Culture, Israel Vibration, Yellowman, Slightly Stoopid, and John Browns Body.

...Love to support a good cause...

ROC are philanthropists and have played numerous benefit concerts for various humanitarian causes most notably, the Peace and Justice Rally on the Boston common (in front of 10,000 people).

Here are some other examples of organizations they have donated money to and played and organized benefit concerts for: Peterborough NH food bank, Save Sudan, Livestrong Foundation, Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti, Bands for Cans and Strangers Helping Strangers food drives, NORML, Students for a Senseable Drug Policy, The Boston Aids Walk, and The NH and ME Fair Trade Fairs, War Child.

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