There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
“Bob Marley Vintage Reggae Festival”
Silver Spring’s ninth annual Jamaican food, music, and crafts festival is billed as an event commemorating Bob Marley, but headlining performers Leroy Sibbles, John Holt, and Ken Boothe deserve to be celebrated for their own accomplishments. All now around 50 years old and touring on the reggae oldies circuit, these three soul-influenced crooners each recorded, at some point, with producer Clement “Sir Coxsone” Dodd at Studio One. Sibbles first came to fame in 1966 as the lead singer of vocal trio the Heptones (pictured, with Sibbles at left). Starting in rocksteady (a medium-tempo, post-ska antecedent to reggae), the Heptones’ acclaim can be traced to his delivery of their exquisite melodies. Before leaving Studio One (due to a feud over royalty payments), Sibbles furthered his reputation by creating clever bass lines as a studio musician there. Since leaving the Heptones, Sibbles has released a number of solo records, including his most recent effort, 1996’s It’s Not Over, where his voice is as stirring as ever. Holt is best known as lead tenor of the Paragons, whose “The Tide Is High” was an ’80s hit for Blondie. On his own he’s veered all over the map—from slick pop ballads to languid roots reggae such as the recently reissued Police in Helicopter. Boothe, known as Mr. Rocksteady, was once as popular among teenage island girls for his looks as for the Sam Cooke-derived intonation of his best known ’60s and ’70s material. With Kremlin Crew and DKGB. The festival runs from 2-10 p.m., with music starting at 6 p.m., at the Silver Spring Armory, 925 Wayne Ave., Silver Spring. $25. (301) 270-6383. (Steve Kiviat)