Earthkry taps into new audiences on US and European tours

By Kevin Jackson
Observer writer

Thursday, July 12, 2018

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Building on one's fanbase is critical to the survival of any artiste. Four-member reggae band Earthkry tapped into new audiences on its recent four-week, North American tour, which also featured New Zealand reggae band Katchafire.

'The US tour lasted for a month. Our first show was in Boston and then we headed to the Midwest, North Carolina, Cincinnati, Minneapolis, Chicago. We got a great turnout on our own merits! Then we joined Katchafire for five dates of their Legacy tour. We performed in Texas, Las Vegas and California,” keyboardist Phillip McFarlane said in an interview with the Jamaica Observer.

He shared his thoughts on how the group benefited from the US trek.

“One of the things is that our fan base has grown in the sense that we toured the US on our own last year, and this year, even before joining Katchafire, we had our shows that sold out like in Minnesota. The great thing with Katchafire is that we got to not only build a new network, but we have also established a new fan base, and there is a demand for us to perform in New Zealand. It was a great accomplishment for us.”

McFarlane gave an insight into the type of audiences that came out to their shows.

“The audience was mainly Polynesian and Caucasians and of course some of our own, but reggae is big in the Polynesian community. In Arizona there are a lot of native Indian tribes, it was amazing to see them come out to our shows, both young and old. Reggae music has no boundaries.”

June marked the fourth time that the group has toured the United States. They are currently on their second tour of Europe.

'This is our second time touring Europe. Last year we did three shows and his year we have over 13 festivals, most of which we are the headliners for,” said McFarlane.

Among the countries in which the group will be performing are the United Kingdom, Portugal, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Spain and The Netherlands.

He also compared performing for audiences in the United States and their counterparts in Europe.

“The European audience is more into roots and the messages. They seem to appreciate more than the Jamaican or even US culture. US appreciates, but the shows in Europe are huge festivals and you play in front of thousands of people. In the US besides the California festivals, it's smaller audiences that appreciate reggae but not the conscious reggae as much.”

Earthkry's latest single is titled Tables Turn. It is taken from the group's 2017 album Survival.

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