Avrakedabra! The Royal Family of Reggae has returned with the announcement of their 11th studio album. Grammy Award-winning, Morgan Heritage recently unveiled the name and cover art to their latest project, Avrakedabra. The album comes on the heels of the critically acclaimed, Grammy winning, Strictly Roots, and is the second project to be released on the band’s independent record label CTBC Music Group. Morgan Heritage just launched their Avrekedabra World Tour beginning at the legendary SXSW Music Festival where the band played an Official headlining set at Clearpoint ATX as part of the Digiwaxx Presents ‘The Blast Live’ Showcase on March 17th, which was also the official pre-order date for Avrakedabra.
“The title was inspired by our love of history. Being that we are students of history, we discovered this word and its various pronunciations throughout the history of time. We chose it as the title of the album because we like it and we feel it represents the new era that our career is about to enter. The meaning we will leave to the audience to choose, since we’ve discovered so many over the dispensation of time,” explained Morgan Heritage about the album title “Avrakedabra”.
The Brooklyn-based band of siblings blend Roots Reggae with Pop, Rock, Country, R&B and Hip-Hop into what they call “Rockaz” Reggae. The album, which is their best work to date, will play host to some heavyweight featured appearances. With Kabaka Pyramid and Dre Island leading the front for the younger generation, Stephen and Ziggy Marley also lend their talents to the collaborative mix. GRAMMY, Emmy, and Dove Award-winning producer Shannon Sanders guides the group’s vision behind the mixing console.
The band has produced a two-part series into the making of Avrakedabra and you can catch Part 1 below.
Track Rambler caught up with Morgan Heritage during SXSW to get a closer look at the what went into making Avrakedabra. Check out what Mr. Mojo Morgan had to say.
Avrakedabra was recorded all around the world. Were you able to incorporate specific elements of each of those locations when creating this album?
MH: We were definitely able to incorporate the energy of which ever place we were in! The vibe of the people and their culture was a great inspiration to our mind set and vibration.
A great thing about this album is that you were able to record whenever inspiration hit. Can you elaborate on some of the inspiration that went into recording this album?
MH: The inspiration of how we live on the road as a family with our band & crew knowing that while we travel the globe, we travel as one big family. A team, a unit, a force of positive vibration and we share that with whomever we encounter during our travels.
Averakedabra mixes the traditional roots sound of Morgan Heritage with a more modern appeal. Can you elaborate on the more modern aspects of this album?
MH: The modern aspect is where music is today. It’s what this generation have made their own. This is our way of relating to them without letting go of who we are and what we have created as Morgan Heritage coming from our generation’s music.
You stated this album was recorded differently to reach out to a different type of audience. What new type of audience do you hope Avrakedabra reaches?
MH: Young and old! We want to bridge the gap between an older generation and the new.
How special was it for Morgan Heritage to collaborate with Stephen and Ziggy Marley and what were they able to bring to this recording?
MH: It was a dream come true to finally have a collaboration with Ziggy & Stephen and what makes it even more special is that they are on the same song with us. What they brought to the song is what we have as a family. The oneness, the love, the unity. Together we were able to share with the world what many have long waited and hoped for.
What where you able to learn from working with Shannon Sanders?
MH: A lot of little things in production that many would normally take for granted. Simple things that you wouldn’t think would make a difference but when it’s done it makes a MAJOR difference.
How did creating Avrakedabra challenge Morgan Heritage?
MH: We didn’t realize we were being challenged until the project was done. Sounds silly but it’s true. When the project was finally done and we began to listen to it as a body of work, we were then able to see how much we’ve put into this album over the past 2 years.
Following the success of Strictly Roots, how much further do you hope Avrakedabra to exceed your own as well as your fans expectations?
MH: Well, we would love our music to continue to reach more and more people. Young & old! There’s 7 billion+ people living on this planet and it would be the greatest thing to us musically if all 7 billion+ people knew about and loved the music of Morgan Heritage!!!
Avrakedabra will be released on May 19th and is available now for pre-order here.
April 1st – Oranjestad, Aruba – The Flip Flop Beach Festival
April 13th – Kampala, Uganda – Lugogo Cricket Oval
April 22nd – Tobago – Tobago Jazz Festival
April 27th – Le Ferme, Martinique – Ferme Perrine
April 28th – Le Gosier, Guadaloupe – Palais Des Sports Du Gosier
April 29th – St Maarten – Carnival Village
May 3rd – Antwerp, Belgium – De Roma
May 4th – Oxford, England – O2 Academy
May 5th – Manchester, England – O2 Ritz
May 6th – Birmingham, England – O2 Academy
May 7th – London England – O2 Forum Kentish Town
May 9th – Paris, France – La Cigale
May 10th – Amsterdam, Holland – Paradiso
May 20th – Nassau, Bahamas – Thomas Robinson Stadium Carnival Grounds