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First Listen: New Kingston – Honorable & The Beast

Kingston, Jamaica: Birth place of the international phenomenon known as reggae music.

Jamaica, New York: Neighborhood within Queens, largest of New York City’s five boroughs, and pioneering hot spot of hip hop music.

New Kingston: Self-described Progressive Reggae group of Jamaican heritage based in NYC, consisting of brothers Tahir Panton (keys), Courtney Panton Jr. (drums), and Stephen Suckarie (guitar), and their father (bassist) Courtney Panton Sr.

After peaking at No. 1 on the Billboard Reggae Album chart with 2015’s Kingston City, New Kingston is back with a brand new offering entitled A Kingston Story: Come From Far, due out August 25th on Easy Star Records. The title track “Come From Far,” available for free download on the band’s website, rides the fine line between forward momentum and absolute laid-backness. The musical attitude is balanced by a lyrical message declaring “look how far we come, look how far we haffi go.”

And New Kingston has done just that, proving themselves on the road playing more than 100 shows per year. With two major U.K. tours around the corner supporting The Skints and Collie Buddz, and a U.S. tour co-headlining with The Movement, New Kingston is making major tracks.

Rootfire is pleased to premiere “Honorable & The Beast,” the second single from A Kingston Story: Come From Far. The track hits hard straight out of the gate with heavy, kick-forward drums, rooted by deep Bill Laswell-esque bass, guitar skank, and piano accents. The instrumentation disperses briefly to accentuate the lyrical refrain of “honorable and the beast” before coming in full force with verse one.

Thematically, “Honorable & The Beast” feeds into the Kingston Story, depicting the challenges the righteous journeyer faces on the road of life. It’s an inspirational message, pushing the youth to break down stereotypes and rebel against social constraints. The steady rhythm section carries the weight of the song’s message in a modern, backbeat reggae style, while tastefully reminiscing on the militant brand of roots reggae’s golden age. This is what makes New Kingston stand apart: the seemingly effortless fusion of new and old, past and future. From what we’ve heard of A Kingston Story so far, the band is on a mission to share their history while telling the tale of where they are now, and where they’re headed next. In the words of guitarist Stephen, “Everyone has a journey they are on or one that has ended. It all starts somewhere and [New Kingston] are no different. We have ‘come from far’ but ‘look how far we haffi go’.”

Catch New Kingston along their journey this fall with The Movement, The Skints, and Collie Buddz.

PRE-ORDER A Kingston Story: Come From Far today.

08.11 Ostroda Reggae Festival – Ostroda, Poland
08.14 Rototom Sunsplash Festival – Benicassim, Spain
09.26 Concorde 2 – Brighton, UK
09.27 Forum – Tunbridge Wells, UK
09.28 Chinnerys – Southend, UK
09.29 Epic Studios – Norwich, UK
10.01 Fruit – Hull, UK
10.02 Plug – Sheffield, UK
10.03 Assembly – Leamington Spa, UK
10.04 The Bullingdon – Oxford, UK
10.05 Sub 89 – Reading, UK
10.08 Wedgewood Rooms – Portsmouth, UK
10.18 Club Academy – Manchester, UK
10.19 Arena House – Birmingham, UK
10.20 Electric Brixton – London, UK
10.25 Blind Tiger – Greensboro, NC
10.26 The Muse – Wilmington, NC
10.27 Pour House – Raleigh, NC
10.28 Music Farm – Charleston, SC
11.01 Shaka’s Live – Virginia Beach, VA
11.02 World Cafe Live – Philadelphia, PA
11.03 Wonder Bar – Asbury Park, NJ
11.04 Gypsy Sally’s – Washington, DC
11.05 The Broadberry – Richmond, VA
11.09 Brooklyn Bowl – Brooklyn, NY
11.10 Brighton Music Hall – Boston, MA
11.11 Higher Ground – Burlington, VT
11.12 Portland House of Music – Portland, ME
11.15 Surfer The Bar – Jacksonville, FL
11.16 The Kelsey Theatre – Lake Park, FL
11.17 West End Trading Co. – Sanford, FL
Get Tickets


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Brian Nelson a.k.a. Red Ninja is passionate about making music, making friends, experiencing life and living to tell the tale. Whether dropping heavy dub beats, cruising untouched Rocky Mountain powder, or talking shop about the music biz, Nelson’s approach is pure ninja.

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