Wareika Hill
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Wareika Hill

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States | INDIE

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States | INDIE
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Wareika Hill (S/T) - 14 track debut album on Jump Up! Records



An earthshaking foundation of fluid bass and rock solid drums; a cushion of gently grooving guitar and swelling keys; a colorful tapestry of scorching guitar licks and cooling blue horn blasts; soulful vocals that are simultaneously earthy and urgent; this is the sound of Wareika Hill.
Wareika Hill represents the best and brightest that Philadelphia has to offer the world of reggae, playing a highly infectious brand of music that is at once deeply rooted in traditional Jamaican rhythms, and yet uniquely its own. Comprised of long-time veterans of the Philly reggae scene, their unmatched musicianship and unabashed enthusiasm for their craft has been setting stages on fire and winning over the ears of audiences and critics alike since their inception in 2005.
The genesis of Wareika Hill lies in the decade-plus friendship and musical relationship between Sean "MacIrie" McPhillips (drums), Dave "Squire" Segal (lead guitar), and "Lord" Tedford Juachon (lead vocals, trombone). As members of the seminal Philadelphia ska group Rathskeller in the late 1990's, the trio bonded over their mutual love of all forms of Jamaican music. After Rathskeller's demise in the early 2000's, the three found themselves drifting from project to project until McPhillips and Segal were musically reunited in the Germantown-based Bagga Riddim Band. It was there that they were introduced to Dan "Brawta" Poruban (rhythm guitar, vocals), Devon "Pele" Gooden (lead vocals), and "Aussie" Steve Taylor (keys), and a strong musical kinship was quickly forged. When Bagga Riddim disbanded in 2005, these parties felt that the chemistry they had developed was far too unique to discard. So, with a call to McPhillips' and Segal's old friend Juachon, and a quick switch from rhythm guitar to bass for Poruban, Wareika Hill was born, taking its name from the musical mecca on the outskirts of Kingston where many of the masters of reggae visited to learn their trade.
As they began to make their presence known and build a name for themselves across the city, several personnel changes occurred. First among them was Taylor's departure to his homeland of Australia, leaving a void that was quickly filled by "Killer" Kevin Killen on keys; next, the discovery and acquisition of "Atomic" Larry Kelsall on bass added a new dimension to the sound, and allowed Poruban to return to his first love, guitar; soon after, when Killen departed for personal reasons, Segal brought in his lifelong friend and musical associate Adam "Bigga Lungs" Flicker to round out the sound on keys, trumpet, and vocals; finally, Juachon moved on to pursue other interests, and thus, the current lineup of Wareika Hill took shape.
Over the course of their existence, Wareika Hill has brought their deep groove to numerous halls, bars, and clubs across Philadelphia, including the Trocadero and the Filmore at the TLA, and such out-of-town venues as the Knitting Factory in New York City and the House of Blues in Atlantic City. They have shared the stage with many celebrated and highly influential artists, including Sizzla, Gregory Isaacs, Freddie McGregor and Israel Vibration, and have won the acclaim of many critics, among them A.D. Amorosi, chief music reviewer for the Philadelphia Inquirer and the City Paper. With the 2010 release of their self-titled debut album on the Chicago-based Jump Up! Records, the recording of which was a true labor of love that can be heard in every note, Wareika Hill is in top form and shows no signs of slowing down. With a determination to continue providing their already established fanbase with the top notch songwriting and musicianship that they've become accustomed to, and a mission to win over every set of ears they come across, they are a musical force to be reckoned with. Put simply, Wareika Hill is the future of Philadelphia reggae.