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The world according to Macka
6:00pm Thursday 5th September 2013 in News
VETERAN reggae star Macka B will mark another first in a career spanning more than three decades when he steps out on stage in Swindon on Saturday.
The evergreen musician has toured Australia, the former Yugoslavia and returned from Slovakia last week – but the leafy Old Town Bowl is new territory.
Macka, real name Christopher MacFarlane, will aim to spread uplifting Rasta vibes when he headlines the third year of the Reggae Garden family festival.
“People can expect positive things, positive lyrics, powerful music and something that everybody can get into,” Macka said. “We just give 100 per cent reggae vibes and everywhere we play in the world, even if people haven’t heard it before, they start to get into it.
“I’m sure the reggae music will bring out the best in the Swindon massive.”
Macka has shunned the ‘gangsta’ talk favoured by dancehall stars like Kartel and Movado and the ‘bling’ lifestyle epitomised by rapper Drake in his hit song Versace.
Macka, 52, said: “I see music as such a powerful medium, we can’t use it for bad.
“It’s not a perfect world and while I have the power to talk, I have the chance to change the world.
“One way I can change the world is through my music. It’s got to be positive. The youths are the future and we’ve got to make it a better world for them.”
Macka, originally from Wolverhampton, has collaborated with some of the greats of the genre and toured with artists including Burning Spear, U-Roy, Lee Perry and The Wailers.
But despite changing trends in reggae his spiritual outlook has never changed.
“I am who I am,” Macka said. “What I’m talking and living are the same thing. I see the gun as a negative thing. It’s not a good invention, it kills a lot of people. If you deal with things spiritually and more on a mental level then you can change things because there’s more to life than material things and guns. There’s more to women than sex, they are the mothers of creation so we should treat them accordingly. If we do all these things we can really make the world a better place.
“One man can change the world, so imagine thousands of people working together.”
The father-of-five has played the biggest stages in reggae, including Sting in Jamaica, but his universal appeal is just as likely to make him a popular draw in Swindon.
“People who enjoy reggae are the type of people who care about the environment, care about the youths, care about other people, animals, peace and love. It should be nice.”
Macka’s discography stretches from Sign of the Times, which topped the reggae album charts in 1986, through to a forthcoming acoustic LP.
He follows a vegan, Ital diet and says his faith is central to his longevity in the music business and belief in inspiring others.
“What I realised is that people cannot not hear you, “ Macka said.
“They can pretend they haven’t heard you but when they’re in their solitude of their room and away from their friends and the peer pressure and material things the words will ring true to them.
“If you can help that one and that one can help another one it can have a snowball effect.
“Until it’s a perfect world I will keep on talking.”
l For tickets visit www.thereggaegarden.com