In recent history, few Santa Barbara success stories loom as large as Rebelution. Born of Isla Vista’s laid-back (read: keg-fueled) music scene sometime around 2004, the quartet quickly rose to the top of the Del Playa heap with their sweet, sunny, and groovy jams. Not long after, they made the jump to Santa Barbara proper and became the reggae-rock band in, well, a veritable sea of reggae-rock bands. Nowadays, Rebelution is touring the world over, hooking up with big-name acts, and, come this Sunday, returning home to the mother of all venues: the Santa Barbara Bowl. The show is just one stop along Rebelution’s current Good Vibes Tour, which finds the band sharing stage time with Collie Buddz, Zion I, and the Rasta rabbi himself, Matisyahu.
As the younger, chiller, and more “alternative” heirs to the Jack Johnson throne, Rebelution (made up of frontman/guitarist Eric Rachmany, keyboardist Rory Carey, drummer Wes Finley, and bassist Marley Williams) has long done well by Santa Barbara standards. Their grooves are slick and slinky and pair perfectly with an ice-cold brew; Rachmany’s lyrics — and soaring vocals — speak to overcoming odds and staying positive; and all four of the band members are as humble, kind, and down-to-earth as they come. (In other words, Uncle Jack would be proud.)
Currently, the band is touring on behalf of Peace of Mind, their 2012 multi-length triple album and highest charting release to date. Like their past outputs, Peace offers up a potable hybrid of reggae, jazz, and groove-driven rock, this time delivered in acoustic and dub versions, in addition to the original versions. Expect selections from the new album, as well as old-school I.V.-inspired jams like “Safe and Sound” and “Educated Fools” to show up on the set list. Oh yeah, and welcome home, guys.
Rebelution plays the Santa Barbara Bowl with Matisyahu and guests on Sunday, August 18, at 5 p.m. Call (805) 962-7411 or visit sbbowl.com for tickets and info.