15 August 2018
We opens our doors. From the 16th to the 22nd of August, by the Mediterranean. Here are ten juicy arguments not to miss an edition that hails the reggae community that was born, and has grown, along with us, keeps on walking and adding years. The 25 Years Walking Together is ready.
1. A special birthday…
25 years separate the first Rototom Sunsplash -with 14 artists in the line-up and the garden of a small disco in Gaio di Spilimbergo, in northern Italy, as the venue- from this this imminent 2018 edition, next to the Mediterranean of Benicàssim (Castellón, Spain) and with more than 200 names staring on its nine scenarios. A nice round anniversary that is reason enough for celebration, for the most veteran members of the public, for the re-encounters, and for the emerging fans eager to discover, and live, their first Rototom experience.
2. …full of special shows
The event celebrates its quarter of a century of life with nine special shows. Californian guitarist Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals leads the bill on Thursday 16 with a show in reggae format designed exclusively for this festival. On the 17th he is followed by Sly & Robbie along with Yellowman -in their only concert in Spain-, Johny Osbourne and Bitty McLean. The Skatalites – played by Derrick Morgan, Doreen Shafer and Vin Gordon – and the David Rodigan concert with a classical 25 piece orchestra to celebrate their 40 years in reggae, extend the list on August 18 and 19, respectively. More anniversaries for August 20: the 25th anniversary of Alborosie & Shengen Clan, in concert with members of The Wailers, and the 30th anniversary of Zion Train. Italian Reggae All Stars, the festival’s tribute to its Italian origins (August 21), closes the special shows on the Main Stage.
3. More line-up, nine stages
At Rototom Sunsplash the sunsets, nights and dawns are 100% musical, with nine stages and more than 200 artists to choose from. The debuts of the Cubans Orishas and the New Zealanders Fat Freddy’s Drop; Beres Hammond; Ivory Coast’s hero Tiken Jah Fakoly – one of the giants of African reggae; the tribute to Peter Tosh, ex-member of the Wailers, offered up by his son Andrew; the star of Jamaican dancehall, Spice; and representatives of Spanish reggae such as Green Valley and Morodo enrich the Main Stage. But there’s more: the most nocturnal trident, is comprised by the Lion Stage, the Dancehall and Dub Academy stages; adding to them is the African Stage; DJ set at the Sunbeach del Solé and the Jumping, Caribbean Uptempo and Roots Yard clubs where you can explore new genres until dawn.
4. Debate and learning
This year the afternoons of the Social Forum will present us with what are often invisible realities such as the phenomenon of the street vendors. The drama of the refugees and the judicial crossroads in which those who try to save the lives of people fleeing from horror by sea are immersed; the threat of plastic to the oceans; alternative views on education; and the consumption and consequences of recreational cannabis take the floor in the Social Forum. Another space for debate at the festival will be the African Village, with talks guided by the voices of Africans and Afro-descendants, such as the Spanish MP for Podemos Rita Bosaho or the winner of Got Talent, the poet César Brandon.
The open air restaurant of the enclosure opens with dishes from four continents with forty different proposals this year to delight all kinds of palates. Cuisine from Ethiopia, Senegal, Morocco or Ivory Coast to Peru, Cuba, Jamaica and Argentina. Asian gastronomy will travel through Thailand, Japan and India and from Europe come proposals from Italy, Germany, Greece and different cities of the Spanish geography.
Rototom Sunsplash is an experience to live in family. Certified as a family festival and with an area free of agglomerations and a comfortable camping, the contest offers daily programming for children in areas such as Magicomundo or Rototom Circus. Also with kids you can enjoy the traditional and modern African dance sessions in African Village, the ArteSano Market workshops or the lively parades to the Main Stage to announce the Main Stage concerts.
7.Solé: the festival on the beach
This year the Sunbeach of Rototom Sunsplash is called Solé. The festival’s official beach bar on Gurugú beach, Castellón is an extension of the vibes by the sea where you can enjoy good music and the best of company. An alternative to relax and regain strength each day to the rhythm of Radio Rototom, free dancehall classes open to the public, DJ sets, chill out area and a varied and healthy gastronomic offer.
8.Values: green and social festival
Sustainable mobility, recycling and a firm commitment to reduce the consumption of plastic define part of our green philosophy, and which the public makes its own during their passage through Benicàssim. Precisely to achieve this last challenge – minimizing plastic – water fountains are increased at an affordable price to eliminate the use of up to 180,000 bottles of this material and a system of reusable glasses with a social purpose is in action once again: this year festival goers who donate their glass in the containers around the venue will contribute the euro of the glass to the NGO Proactiva Open Arms.
9.Inclusive and plural: a festival for everyone
The festival activates its system of free tickets for children under 13, the over 65’s and people with disabilities greater than 65%, in the latter case they have the right to bring a companion. The venue also has adapted facilities: ramps at the entrances; platforms in front of the main stage; accessible toilets, the campsite has adapted toilets and showers and a specific parking area for people with reduced mobility, who have a special window at the ticket office to access the venue more quickly and comfortably. The people registered in Benicàssim have a 50% discount on the tickets, and unemployed of Castellon will be able to enter the venue on August 21 for 5 euros.
10. Safe fun. Respectful environment
Guaranteed access to safe fun for all and a festival free of sexist behaviours and aggressions is the aim of the Respect Point that the Rototom Sunsplash opens in its venue, next to the tent of the Social Forum. It will be active from August 16 to 22 between 19:00 and 06:00.