P R E S S R E L E A S E S 2004
August 5, 2004
Coffie Steams Up MASS MoCA Reggae Dance Party Bad Boys Style
(North Adams, Mass.) -- Whatcha gonna do when Calton Coffie comes for you? For Grammy-award winner Calton Coffie, groove and dancing come as naturally as breathing. Best known as the lead singer performing the reggae-pop classic Bad Boys with the group Inner Circle (picked up as a theme song by the internationally syndicated reality crime show COPS), Coffie’s solo career is characterized by kinetic live performances and danceable yet rootsy jams. Fronting a new group, Coffie spreads the rhythm-infused music of his Jamaican roots at MASS MoCA’s Reggae Dance Party on Sunday, September 5, at 7:30PM. Held outdoors in Courtyard C, dancers can watch the Berkshire stars come out if the weather is fine or move inside to the Hunter Center — outfitted for the night as a reggae dance hall — if rain threatens.
Originally born in London, Coffie was raised in Kingston, Jamaica, where he was influenced by the emergence of reggae. Selected by the reggae band Inner Circle in the mid-‘80s as lead vocalist, Coffie went on to claim several major music industry awards, including a Grammy for Best Reggae Album. In addition to four Platinum albums and fifteen Gold albums worldwide, Coffie has also won recognition for his work as a producer and composer in major publications such as Billboard Magazine. Coffie’s vocals have been featured on box office hits like Minority Report (2002), Bad Boys (1997), and Beverly Hills Cop III (1994), and on hit songs such as Bad Boys and Sweat (A La La La La Long). After breaking up with the group Inner Circle in 1996, Coffie went on to pursue a solo career, releasing the albums Scandal (1998), Bad Boys (1999), and most recently, A Hot Cup of Calton Coffie.
The evolution of reggae was deeply influenced by politics and spirituality. Drawing inspiration from American rhythm and blues, traditional Caribbean folk music, plantation work songs, gospel, and soul, reggae incorporates themes of oppression, social issues, slavery, love, and redemption. Shortly after Jamaica’s independence in 1962, reggae music emerged as a medium of expression for the island nation’s newly autonomous population, gaining popularity with the Civil Rights movement in the United States. Dub, a reggae movement in which preexisting recordings are instrumentally re-mixed and layered with sound effects, became one of the leading influences of hip hop, rap, and other contemporary styles of popular music.
The Reggae Dance Party is sponsored by The Berkshire Eagle and North Adams Transcript. Dance instruction arranged by Jacob’s Pillow. Come early for a taste of the Caribbean – doors open at 6:30 for food and drink.
Tickets for Reggae Dance Party with Calton Coffie are $13 in advance, $15 day of the show, $10 for students with I.D., and $6 for kids. MASS MoCA members receive a 10% discount. Tickets are available through the MASS MoCA Box Office located off Marshall Street in North Adams from 10 A.M. until 6 P.M. every day. Tickets can also be charged by phone by calling 413.662.2111 during Box Office hours or purchased anytime at www.massmoca.org.
MASS MoCA, the largest center for contemporary visual and performing arts in the United States, is located off Marshall St. in North Adams on a 13-acre campus of renovated 19th-century factory buildings.
For Immediate Release