Report: Reggae Sundance 2023

As an official partner for the Reggae Sundance this article might sound a bit biased, but what incredible vibes were present at the Karpendonkse Plas, Eindhoven The Netherlands. It seemed like all the artists went the extra mile in their performances for this festival with its roots in 1996.

The festival started somehow slow because of the heavy rainfall in the night and morning, but with the heavy dubs from Brandon Knights coming from the stage, slowly people started to flood the venue. During Yaksta’s energetic set, the near-empty space in front of the stage turned into a small crowd. The ones who came out early got to see the new kid on the block who is well-prepared to make the future of reggae and dancehall brighter. But by the time the festival added an extra dose of sizzling energy on stage, in the form of Lila Iké the many visitors that came out returned that same energy to Lila (Who brought Jaz Elise on stage as a surprise. Yaksta and Lila (and Jaz) proved that conscious Jamaican music has a bright future.

By the time the baddest boys in the business, Inner Circle came on stage, the sun had come out fully and the festival returned to its magical annual vibes. The special vibes that regular Sundance goers know so well. The kinda vibes that make you forget all your worries and problems, at least for this day. Inner Circle performed a musical potpourri of Reggae Classics which was well received by the crowd.

After the bad boys, it was time for Gentleman to work his magic. And he delivered, as always. While the crowd sang his lyrics word for word, at the end of his set, Gentleman decided (again) to step into the crowd to connect with his fans. If you really wanna see some smiling faces, you should have checked that crowd.

It almost seems to be the word of the festival… Energy… The Energy of Life, which fits so well with the tagline of the Reggae Sundance festival, ‘Celebrate Life’. And that was exactly what happened when King Shango, The Prophet, Capleton ran on stage to spread his blessed fire over the crowd burning down all negativity. If you have never seen a Capleton show, I suggest you should visit one soon.

Not sure if it was just me, but at 10 PM the vibes on the festival ground changed dramatically. As I stood on stage and watched over the crowd the high energy that was built up during the day seemed to have changed in anticipation. As the crowd gathered closer to the stage to get ready for the highlight of the festival: The Original Burning Spear. Many just came out to see this legend perform. And as soon the lights went out and Winston Rodney started speaking on his history in the music and his meeting with Bob Marley the anticipation started turning into meditation upon the first notes of “Door Peep”.

While overlooking the Festival grounds it seemed to me that this is what must have been a ‘Natural Mystic blowing through the Air”. As I said in the beginning, I might have been a bit biased because I was able to be part of the festival organization, which I am very grateful of. But standing at the back of the stage, overlooking the Spear on stage and the crowd in front of him, I remembered what Reggae Music is for me. And since a long while, It felt amazing. So many people from all corners of the world enjoy the same thing together as one… music. Roots Reggae Music.

Thank you Reggae Sundance for your trust and a big thank you to all that I have seen at the festival. Friends, Family, Artists, Shuttle Drivers, Sponsors, See you all next year!

Danny Creatah

Pictures by Max van den Berg and Flora (aka Yung Creatah 🙂 )