Reviews

“For more than twenty years now, the Saint Lucian reggae band based in Ohio, The Ark Band, has been spreading the joys of roots rock reggae all over the United States. “We have played in every State, except North and South Dakota,” Terry Bobb told the STAR this week during an interview. Terry Bobb, who was on vacation here over the Christmas and New Year holidays, is one half of the founding members of the band. The other is his brother Eustace Bobb. Together they are referred to as the Saint Lucian rhythm twins (after the Jamaican rhythm twins Sly & Robbie), due to their distinct drum and bass sound.

Presently hailed as the number one reggae band in the whole Midwest USA by several publications, The Ark Band is heavily booked each year between May and September, playing a number of large events and festivals. However, they are on the road most of the year, performing at clubs, weddings and other events as well. The group, which was once endorsed by Miller Beer, recently signed on to a new sponsorship deal with another brewing company.

They have also shared the stage with a number of reggae greats including Burning Spear, Tony Rebel, Freddie McGregor, Culture, The Abyssians, Beres Hammond, Inner Circle, Israel Vibrations and many others. In fact, they recall their single largest event several years ago, playing before 70,000 fans at the Vermont Reggae Festival. Also on stage were Lucky Dube and Sister Carol. However, at the end of the day one newspaper reviewer wrote: “Surprisingly the Ohio-based band, The Ark Band, put on the best set of the day.” They were also labelled as having “stunning vocals, penetrating lyrics, backed by the tightest instrumentals imaginable.”

Following another live performance Tom Weber, co-author of Reggae Island wrote: “The Ark Band is one of the best Reggae bands I have ever seen, and I have seen a lot of Reggae bands!”

By Toni Nicholas in the ST. LUCIA STAR [ click to read complete article ]

“Do you ever wonder about things say for example what would Misty In Roots sound like if they merged with Morgan Heritage? Well my guess is that they would sound like this. The singing and songwriter is so strong. Roots tunes, love tunes and reality tunes.”

Review by Ray Hurford – SMALL AXE magazine, London

“Few American-based reggae bands have shown the commitment and dedication of The Ark Band, whose latest release Love is What We Need (Ark Band) is a textbook example of what’s best in American-based reggae. Whether the subject matter is “Pain and Misery,” “Drive By Shooting” or “Rastafari”, the uplifting intent of the lyrics is underpinned by a pulsing rhythmic structure and melodic surface with tight vocals augmented by harmonies, tasty guitar and organ fills and percussive invention. Co-produced by the band and Iawatha “Amha” Selassie and mixed and mastered by the legendary Jim Fox of Lion and Fox Recording Studio, this is an impressive set of music from a band that’s ready to break out into the mainstream without losing any of its roots.”

Chuck Foster – THE BEAT (VOL. 19 NO. 4)

“Ladies & Gentlemen: Of the 37 years of my life, last weekend was one of the absolute best ever, and certainly the best in recent memory, bar none! With The Ark Band’s performance at the Flamingo Cantina on Friday night, all I can say is that the Austin massive was well pleased. It was pure niceness all around. The weather was slightly less than ideal, but there were nothing but smiles all around. Of course, for use it ended too soon (they played from about 10:45 to 2:30 or so with one short break).”

Horace Bowser – Flamingo Cantina, Austin TX

“The Ark Band played Club Viva last night and were outstanding. I hadn’t seen the guys for awhile and must admit they sounded great. They played some wicked roots and also mixed in some great sounding Soca. The dance floor was packed and it was a great way to start the holiday. Give thanks…”

Professor Skank, RAW #994

“The day of Saturn comes as does The Ark Band to Einstein’s. Playing mostly Jah originals, and the occasional soca and calypso, they focus on an experience that will not only enlighten you, but educate at the same time. With awe-inspiring vocal harmonies, The Ark Band can lay a classic reggae song on you that will hasten you back to a more innocent time. The Ark Band is a highly innovative classic reggae band in an age where DJ’s own Boardwalk and Park Place.”

Roman Warmke, Athens News

“Possibly America’s finest live reggae act.”

Paul Toth, Miracle Productions

“An incredible performance (with) tremendously positive feedback from people on campus. Some alumni said it was the best ever.”

Dave Hamady, Delta Tau Delta, Albion College (Michigan)

“The Ark Band, without a doubt, can compete with ANY reggae band on the international scene, and is truly tops in American reggae.”

Packy Malley, Packey Malley Presents/ A One Love Production

Mid West Reggae Fest (Cleveland, Ohio)

“The Ark Band is one of the best Reggae bands I have ever seen, and I have seen a lot of Reggae bands!”

Tom Weber, co-author, “Reggae Island”

“Stunning vocals, penetrating lyrics, backed by the tightest instrumentals imaginable – The Ark Band is destined for nationwide success.”

Vermont Reggae Festival