Rototom Sunsplash bids farewell to its 28th edition with the flamenco vibes of Bob Marley and the worldwide reggae legends UB40 and Anthony B
The closing party hosts this Tuesday, August 22nd, the international premiere of 'The flamenco world salutes Bob Marley', with Kiki Morente as special guest to reinterpret from the cante jondo the hits of the king of reggae. The Valencian bands La Fúmiga and Nativa complete the state staging of the evening on the Main Stage and Lion Stage, which will be preceded by the final parade guided by the slogan 'United for Peace' to launch a cry for peace to the world from Benicàssim. REPLACEMENT AT THE SOCIAL FORUM: WikiLeaks global ambassador Joseph Farrell to replace Stella Assange in the 'In Support of Julian Assange' debate this Monday, August 21st, at 6 pm.

The international reggae festival Rototom Sunsplash in Benicàssim prepares a closing party for its 28th edition full of eclectic musical assets, such as the symbiosis of reggae with the flamenco universe of the project ‘The Flamenco world salutes Bob Marley’,of world reggae legends such as UB40 and Anthony Band of Valencian musical potential, represented by La Fúmiga.

Thus, the sound fusion that the festival boasts gives another twist and turns this Tuesday, August 22nd, towards the flamenco vibrations of Bob Marley with ‘The Flamenco world salutes Bob Marley’,an extraordinary project that will have its world premiere on the Main Stage at 9.30 pm. Conceived by the musician Israel Suárez ‘El Piraña’, this unprecedented show reinterprets Bob Marley’s best known songs in flamenco and English in the voice of an artistic cast that incorporates great figures of music, many of them directly linked to flamenco singing. A cast that includes Josemi Carmona, Álex Conde, Alana Sinkey, Noemí Humanes, Josue Ronkío and Juan Carmona Jr, with the special collaboration of Kiki Morente.

The evening also pays tribute to two world reggae legends: UB40 and Anthony B. The English UB40 are one of the most successful reggae groups worldwide and, often on their world tours, were the first to bring reggae to many countries where Jamaican culture was still unknown. A strong political commitment characterized their early albums, while later they opted for a more pop-reggae approach without denying the roots of the Jamaican sound. After several splits and changes, original singer Ali Campbell has recently returned with UB40 after a hugely successful solo career. The band will take the Main Stage at 23:00.

He will be followed (00.45 am) by Anthony B, ambassador of the return to the roots of Jamaican music in the 90s, famous for the great energy of his live performances. The attack on corruption in his country ‘Fire Pon Rome’ was his first song which was a huge success and opened a long career marked by a mix of great social militancy combined with the energy inspired by the crazy world of Jamaican dancehall. Anthony B will perform with Austrian band House Of Riddim, closing the Main Stage of the ‘United for Peace’ edition.

Benicassim, 2023-08-20. Johnny Osbourne (Main Stage). Photo by: Tato Richieri © Rototom Sunsplash 2023.

As far as the Spanish music scene is concerned, although with a greater geographical proximity, the festival will echo a Valencian double bill led by La Fúmiga (Main Stage, 8 pm). The band from Alzira (Valencia), made up only of wind and percussion instruments in the style of American brass bands or European village bands, has revolutionized music like no other with its optimistic and energetic lyrics and its sound base of ska, punk and Latin music. Meanwhile, the Lion Stage will showcase the eclectic talent of Nativa. With Gandia as epicenter, the band integrated by several ex-members of La Raíz arrives with their music full of good vibes and calls to action. Reggae, jazz and hip-hop combined with hints of Spanish and South American pop for a promising performance.

Also on the Lion Stage, we will be captivated by the beautiful soulful voice of the German Sara Lugo, an original interpreter of reggae and soul in Europe. Throughout her career she has had important collaborations with artists of the world reggae scene such as Protoje, Collie Budz, Jah9 and Lutan Fyah, amongst others. Her latest album ‘Flowaz’ from 2021 shows the more soulful and intimate side of her talent.

Also joining the roar of the most leonine stage is the Mexican band Son Rompe Pera (00.00 am), which was formed in 2017 in Naucalpan, a suburb of Mexico City. They move within the South American musical tradition using the sound of marimbas and cumbia rhythms, adding with great energy elements of ska, rock, punk and danzón, a modern genre of Cuban music derived from the habanera. Their fame in Mexico has also spread to the neighbouring country, the United States, where they have given numerous concerts.

The Lion Stage will close this year’s line-up with a special collaboration between the multi-faceted and acclaimed London-based Italian dub artist Gaudi and the legendary Don Letts, the man who introduced reggae to London punks as a deejay. This unmissable live show will move between the dub tradition and the more modern sounds of club culture and will feature veteran Jamaican vocalist Earl Sixteen, known to reggae fans for his collaborations with Lee Perry, Augustus Pablo and Mikey Dread.

Benicassim, 2023-08-20. Middle School Class (Dancehall). Photo by: Tato Richieri © Rototom Sunsplash 2023.

Meanwhile, the last night at the Dancehall will feature DJ Lion, famous for his work with King Wadada Sound in Malaga, one of the pioneers of the tradition of sound systems in Spain, who will celebrate with this session his thirty-year career. King Addies, the legendary star of the New York sound of the golden age of the nineties and one of the most iconic sound systems on the planet, will celebrate his 40th anniversary at Rototom.

The musical closing of the festival will be preceded, as every summer, by the final parade, guided in this edition by the motto that has moved the festival, ‘United for Peace’. A colourful, vindictive and collective parade to launch, to the world, a cry for peace from the reggae city of Rototom Sunsplash.


On the other hand, after announcing that, due to personal reasons beyond the organization’s control, Stella Assange, lawyer of journalist and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, will not be able to intervene in the session of the Social Forum ‘In support of Julian Assange’ scheduled for this Monday, August 21st, Rototom Sunsplash confirms the participation instead of the also journalist and global ambassador of WikiLeaks, the British Joseph Farrell.

Benicassim, 2023-08-20. In the margins (Social Forum). Photo by: Luca Valenta © Rototom Sunsplash 2023.

Farrell will intervene by videoconference at 6 pm to present the current situation of Julian Assange, who is at risk of being extradited to the United States and sentenced to life imprisonment for having done his informative work by publishing documents that prove war crimes by the United States and other countries in the Iraq conflict.

For 12 years, the WikiLeaks founder has been deprived of his freedom. Today he is being held in the maximum security prison of Belmarsh in the UK. Farrell, who has worked for the Centre for Investigative Journalism, is carrying out numerous actions around the world to demand Assange’s release.

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