Simmer Down Sound 5 Year Anniversary!

Akasha & Ska Brewing Present!

Simmer Down Sound 5 Year Anniversary!

Jahdan Blakkamoore, Illuminati Congo, The Graduate, Rad Brian, MarcusIyah, King Tony, Mr Greenweedz

Sat, May 13, 2017

Doors: 10:00 pm / Show: 10:00 pm



Tickets at the Door

This event is 21 and over

Simmer Down Sound
Simmer Down Sound (“SDS”) is a Chicago-based movement honoring the extraordinary musical culture and legacy of Jamaica. It was founded by Cosmos Ray in 2011 and started as a monthly event at the Double Door, an iconic Chicago music club. Many reggae nights in Chicago are focused on a single style of reggae and are attended by only one group of fans. However, SDS set out to create a night that covers as much territory as possible of the steeped fifty-year history of reggae music.

Our philosophy derives from Jamaican ska anthem “Simmer Down,” by the Wailers and the Skatalites. At the time of the writing of this song, Jamaican youth were embroiled in violence. In an effort to dispel the bloodshed, Bob Marley used his lyrics to plead with the youth of Kingston to simmer down. By the same token, SDS asks its participants to leave ideology, religion, politics and other divisive beliefs at the door, and to “simmer down” together around art and music in order to promote greater awareness, acceptance, and peace.

We feature resident and guest selectors (DJs) that honor the 45 rpm record and vinyl at large, as our monthly events are strictly vinyl. The amazing vinyl collections of SDS resident Selectors, The Graduate, Rad Brian, MarcusIyah and King Tony are a testimony to their deep love for Jamaican music. From original ska, rocksteady, roots, dub, lovers rock, rub­a­dub, and digi-dancehall to today’s newest anthems, these three aficionados have the choicest and rarest selections, which means that a visit to Simmer Down Sound guarantees you will hear a tune you have never heard before.

We also spotlight two sets of live performance from the best of Chicago’s musicians. Chicago’s best-loved vibrant reggae outfit Akasha, fronted by SDS founder Cosmos Ray, serves as the resident live band. Akasha embraces and embroiders upon the rich tapestry of the Jamaican canon, and leads the way in paying tribute to reggae history while forging its own unique sound.

We also create a space for toasters (a.k.a. deejays) from the audience to vocalize on the microphone over riddims spun by our selectors, giving a unique element of audience participation to the night. Finally, we also include a visual element to the evening, with Odd Obsession Movies screening Westerns and martial arts films, a strangely perfect counterpart to reggae music.

The combination of these elements has infused SDS events with a unique sense of
organized yet organic chaos. You never know what will happen next, from the style of music selected, to the films screened, to what vocalists will appear. In this way, we pay homage to the dynamism of soundsystem culture, and we keep our audience on its feet! We also maintain video and audio recordings of each night in order to preserve these one of a kind performances.

We are honored and grateful for our ever growing support, and for all the great talents who have been a part of our events. We look forward to continuing to expand our movement.
Jahdan Blakkamoore
Jahdan Blakkamoore
(of Noble Society, Smif-n-Wessun, Dead Prez, Matisyahu, Snoop Lion, and Major Lazer)

Jahdan Blakkamoore has long made a name for himself as a gifted and inspiring Reggae/Dancehall/Hip Hop/Dubstep artist - both nationally and internationally. His music has been described as "Urban World Music with a message." Jahdan's sense of melody, superb song writing skills and ability to effortlessly cross over genres has solidified his status as a relevant artist in Reggae music. As lead singer of his group Noble Society, they received Best Reggae Album of the year on iTunes for 'Take Charge' in 2008 and he has not stopped to win over worldwide audiences since. His solo debut album 'Buzzrock Warrior', released worldwide in 2009 on the Gold Dust/!K7 label, was also voted Best Reggae album of the year on iTunes. His solo debut has long been anticipated by his large fan base spanning from Brooklyn to Oslo, built over many years of delivering command performances and recordings throughout the US and Europe. 'The General', the first single released from 'Buzzrock Warrior' was chosen for Song of the Week on National Geographic World Music soon after its release. After a successful European tour with Noble Society in support of their forthcoming album 'PPM', Jahdan released his mix tape 'Global Warning' a preview to his current solo album 'Babylon Nightmare' released December 7th 2010 on the Lustre Kings label. "All Comes Back to One" the first video and single from the album has been receiving positive reviews globally. Routes for a supporting tour with Noble Society are currently being planned for 2011. Jahdan is a featured artist on the track "Cash Flow" from Diplo and Switch's Major Lazer collaboration. He also wrote the song "Struggla" on Matisyahu's new album. His verse on the hook of Smiff N Wesson's classic, "Sound Bwoy Buriell" is still played regularly in clubs around the world and in radio throwback sets on Hot 97 by Funk Master Flex, Mr. C, and others. Jahdan has shared the stage with great artist such as Anthony B, Sizzla, Lee "Scratch" Perry, and many others.
Illuminati Congo
Illuminati Congo
Illuminati Congo is a Chicago based hip hop. Vocalist Jahn The Baptist and producer Nic The Graduate create an infectious blend of head nodding beats and unexpected subject matter that will have you begging for a rewind! Musical influences range from classic reggae to classic rock creating an equa
l blend of modern synth-and-sampler driven hip hop and danceable, live band instrumenta- tion. The sound is reminiscent of artists such as Nas and Damian Marley with a hint of Gym Class Heroes thrown in. There is much more space for the musicians to shine than is typical in hip hop. Instrument solos and "dubs" are mixed throughout, giving the lyrics time to settle in and just feel the rhythm. Breakup songs come across just as heart-felt as songs about sexy yoga chicks and the anguish of having a foot fetish- often in a not so subtle tongue in cheek manner.
Jahn The Baptist is unlike any other rapper out there. He is able to utilize his mantra of "as above, so below" to formulate a refreshing unity of the higher self and lower self. His lyrics reflect both his practice of spirituality and his embrace of earthly, human desires. His words are meant to appeal both to Yogis as well as the inner city Hood- with an authoritative demeanor that lets you know he is equally of both. Having studied and taught Kundalini Yoga and Rebirthing Breathwork as well as being an avid herbalist in the Rastafarian community, Jahns true goal is to heal. Heal the world of its ills through awareness of self and the practice of unconditional love. Hip hop is an art form that has the ability to com- municate complex ideas to a potentially large audience, let it not go to waste!
Nic The Graduate has taken Jahn's eclectic background and layered
it with equally eclectic beats. As a Multi-instrumentalist, producer and dj soon for many years in Chicago, he is most attracted to music that elicits an
emotional response. Rather than just being impressed by songs that get the dance floor packed or stay in your head for hours, he is always more interested in music with a meaning- or soul. In producing the Illuminati Congo album, he has made it apparent that hip hop is truly a global style, combining traditionally heavy beats and bass lines with some unexpected twists and turns from other genres. In using a wide variety of live instru- ments and samplers The Graduate is able create a fusion that activates the soul as well as the dancing spirit.
Vocal collaborations include major reggae recording artists; Lee "Scratch" Perry, Big youth, JahDan and Lutan Fyah. Hip Hop legends; Cee Knowledge the Doodlebug from Digable Planets, Del The Funky Homosa- pien as well as Chicago veterans; Rita j, Juice, Ang 13 and Sharkula.
Venue Information:
2011 W. North Ave.
Chicago, IL, 60647