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Saturday, March 23 , 2019, 2:46 am | Fair 50º


Mike Love With Desert Rhythm Project Live at SOhO

Revolutionary music may seem hard to come by these days these day. Long gone is the era of artists like Bob Marley, The Clash, Stevie Wonder and Patti Smith getting airplay and bringing their messages to the masses.

But that doesn’t mean the revolution isn’t still brewing in the hearts and minds of many people around the globe.

Meet Mike Love, one of reggae music’s rising stars. Born and raised in Oahu, Hawaii, to a musical family that spans generations, Love brings a multitude of influences to the table, all tied together by the common goal of making the world a better place.

He will bring his music to SOhO, 1221 State Street #205 Santa Barbara at 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 19.

On Love’s debut album, The Change I’m Seeking, he harkens the legends of roots reggae in his lyrics and sound, but never relies on any one genre to hold him down.

Love comes from a wealth of influence. He started out playing classical piano as a teenager and later performed in high school bands that were more akin to the grunge sounds of Soundgarden and Pearl Jam.

Love fuses the simple rhythms of classic reggae with the complex changes of the classical and rock music he was first trained on to come up with a style wholly unique to him. 

He is currently wrapping up his second album, Love Will Find A Way. But it’s his message, his passion, the wisdom behind his words that resonate with his fans.

“It’s always been about the depth,” Love said. “I’ve never been into music that was shallow. I’m still learning. I’m still learning about where I’m going and where I want to be. All the music is a learning tool to me too. I just make myself open to it.

“All the messages that come through the music, it’s not just coming through me and my wisdom, because I don’t think I’m that wise of a person. I don’t think I’m some wise elder or anything like that.

“I just make myself open to the music and it just comes through. To me it’s just as much of a teaching for me as it is for anyone who is listening to it and is open to it,” he said.

Love has shared the stage with such artists as Stephen Marley, Don Carlos, Trevor Hall, Nahko & Medicine For The People, John Butler Trio, Groundation, Steel Pulse, Dave Matthews and Jack Johnson.

Desert Rhythm Project, based in Joshua Tree, collectively creates and spreads this message of love. In the past, the group has had the opportunity to open for some of the hardest hitters in the reggae scene such as Fortunate Youth, The Expanders, and Giant Panda Guerrilla Dub Squad.

Desert Rhythm Project has played at the Joshua Tree Music Festival in 2015 and 2016.

Tickets for the performance at SOhO are $15 in advance, $18 at the door. Call 962-7776 ext. 6 for reservations. Tickets available at sohosb.com.

— Kirk Reed for SOhO.


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