After dropping three notable singles, Grounding releases “Market Price,” an uplifting spiritual track showcasing the diversity of the band’s upcoming studio album, One Rock. The fourth single kicks off with slow, dreamy piano notes, before launching into an uptempo jazz melody that then slides into sunny, soothing reggae. The music creates a sonic reflection with the music balancing the heaviness of the lyrics. On “Market Price,” bandleader and songwriter Harrison Stafford rages against a sick and immoral society, saying, “Please don’t judge the soul of man tonight, we don’t we’re not ready, Lord.” At the end, the message of the song is one of hope and optimism: “It’s not the end, you see, because I believe in the prophecy, and there is a riddim inside of us, we will change society!” As with the first three singles, a video for “Market Price” was produced by Harrison’s childhood friend Roger Hall and was released the same day. Speaking of the new single, Harrison Stafford said the song “represents one of the most complex and lyrically powerful songs in the entire Groundation catalog”. Stream the new single here: http://moremusic.at/MarketPrice with the music video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bs8yRBCzoO0).
Over two decades into a storied career, Groundation returns this year with their 10th studio album, One Rock. The band, formed in 1998 by singer/guitarist Harrison Stafford, helped define American roots reggae, while building a large and loyal following in Europe and South America, where they have always been a major headliner. and a festival attraction for years. One Rock advances its sound and legacy through 9 intense songs with intricate arrangements, moving melodies, and lyrics that touch on the human condition, the human spirit, and the state of the world. Always a band that respects its elders and ancestors, Groundation once again makes history by bringing together legendary reggae vocal groups Israel Vibration, The Abyssinians and The Congos. One Rock is set to be released on May 13, via a partnership between French BACO Records and American Easy Star Records. You can pre-save or pre-order exclusive vinyl, CD and tee at http://moremusic.at/OneRockAlbum.
Previous singles from the album include “Original Riddim”, a song that revolves around the universal story of how music is part of the spark that started our human experience. In this track, Stafford welcomes the listener into the conversation, “Before man walked and spoke, they formed a union where no tribe was left out, you are not left out! ” A music video for the song, directed by Roger Hall and filmed in Jamaica, New York, Texas, Florida and California, accompanies the single. Just as the song unites Israel Vibration and The Abyssinians for the first time, the video also explores new ground by bringing the two bands together, as well as The Congos and members of Groundation, all together in one place. Watch/stream/download the single and video at http://moremusic.at/OriginalRiddim.
The second single “Human Race” crackles with infectious energy, with Stafford singing about love and unification. “If love were the rule, would it all stay the same?” he asks, making a powerful statement in these times of polarization. The result is an instantly memorable song, well balanced between roots reggae and jazz, which was Groundation’s signature style that drew so many fans into their music. The third single released was the title track “One Rock”, featuring the legendary Congos, well known for their work with Lee “Scratch” Perry, and their impressive vocal range. The single can be streamed here: http://moremusic.at/OneRockSingle alongside the music video https://youtu.be/CHk2wzwVIao.
Groundation formed in 1998 when Stafford started a roots reggae/jazz fusion group with other students in Sonoma State University’s Jazz Performance program. The band’s first 2 albums (Young Tree and Each One Teach One) established their unique sound, while beginning the band’s long affiliation with founding reggae artists, as Each One Teach One features vocalist Marcia Higgs and master of the Ras Michael battery. Stafford’s extensive knowledge of the reggae genre led him to develop a course he taught at Sonoma State called “The History of Reggae Music”, where legends like Joseph Hill of culture and icons historical figures such as Abba Melchezadek (private secretary of Haile Selassie) would come to share their personal experiences.
In 1999, while in Jamaica, Harrison met legendary engineer Jim Fox, who helped produce many of RAS Records’ most iconic releases. Fox remastered Young Tree and Each One Teach One and recorded Hebron Gate (2002), the album that launched Groundation with international acclaim. Fox continued to work with the band on each subsequent release, helping shape their sound on We Free Again (2004), Upon The Bridge (2006), Here I Am (2009), Building An Ark (2012) and A Miracle ( 2014) creating a catalog of deep, deep, progressive roots reggae music. Similarly, Groundation’s artwork had a cohesive look and feel, with Stafford’s childhood friend Giovanni Maki creating all of the visual designs from the very beginning.
Over the years, Groundation has performed in over 35 countries on 5 continents. The band, which has seen many personnel changes over the years but still built around the leadership of Harrison Stafford, have continued to take reggae into new worlds, with their latest studio album, The Next Generation (2018)s opening with a full jazz big band (with 12 horn players). This album beat out Ziggy Marley and others to win Reggae.fr’s “Best Reggae Roots Album of 2018”, voted on by over 16,000 members of the media, musicians, producers and fans. The band has numerous tour dates and festivals set up for the coming year in Europe, South America and the United States.