Burning Spear, The Wailers and many more to tour the country in December...

Africa’s biggest ever reggae festival, featuring top Jamaican acts BURNING SPEAR, CULTURE and THE WAILERS, will be staged in South Africa in mid-December.

Top reggae artists, including Bob Marley, have toured Africa before, but this is the first time the continent will be hosting three headline acts on one bill.

The ‘Home To My Roots’ festival kicks off on December 15 in Cape Town’s The Big Arena, a 10 000-capacity tent that is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the largest movable entertainment venue in the world.

Thereafter it travels to Johannesburg for a December 16 performance that will commemorate South Africa’s Day Of Reconciliation. Co-sponsored by Revolver Records and the South African public broadcasting TV channel SABC1, the festival closes in Durban the following day (December 17).

Topping the bill is Burning Spear, aka Winston Rodney, who has been touring the world for the last three decades. The eight-time Grammy nominee and 1999 Grammy Award winner for Best Reggae Album (‘Calling Rastafari’) is widely regarded as one of the genre’s great living legends. Unconfirmed reports are that the ‘Home To My Roots’ tour will mark Rodney’s last live performances.

Led by talented vocalist Joseph Hill, Culture have earned a reputation as a peerless reggae harmony trio that have retained their roots integrity, both musically and spiritually. If they lack anything it’s the street cred of The Wailers. Catapulted into the international limelight as Bob Marley’s backing band, they have flown the roots reggae flag high for almost four decades.

Led by Marley cohort Aston ‘Familyman’ Barrett, the current line-up includes several of the original band members that toured with Marley.