Raggadeath

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Raggadeath
Origin Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Genres reggae rock, rap metal
Years active 1995–1997
Labels Virgin Music Canada/EMI
Attic/Universal
Associated acts Monster Voodoo Machine, Michie Mee
Past members Walter Sobczak
Stephen Kendall
Koze Kozma
Steve Major
Darren Quinn

Raggadeath was a Canadian rap metal band that enjoyed moderate success in the mid-1990s.[1] The band fused heavy metal with dancehall reggae-style rhythms and vocals.[2]

The band's core members and founders were producer/dj/drummer Stephen Kendall and producer/engineer/bassist/keyboardist Walter Sobczak.[3]

Steve Major played all the guitars on the records.[3] Dean Bentley on drums and Darren Quinn on guitar of Monster Voodoo Machine[1] were added for the live shows. The band utilized a variety of vocalists, most notably rapper Michie Mee.[1] Rapper Koze Kozma was also an early band member, but was deported to the United Kingdom after disappearing for six weeks and then turning up weeks later as a Hare Krishna.[4] All of the recordings (Virgin Music Canada/EMI Records Ltd. and Attic Records/Universal releases) were produced by Walter Sobczak and Stephen Kendall, and engineered by Walter Sobczak.[3]

The band's biggest Canadian hit was "One Life" in 1995, achieving high rotation on MuchMusic,[3] and being voted Favourite Song in Chart magazine's year-end reader's poll. The 1995 album Why Ask Why, containing the singles "One Life" and "Why Ask Why", was also released by Virgin in several European markets.[3] Due to the band members' other commitments and Kozma's disappearance the album was not supported by a concert tour, with a live appearance on the MuchMusic Video Awards in 1995 being the band's only major live performance to support the album.[5]

Raggadeath also achieved moderate international success with its self-titled 1997 album, which featured "Dance with the Devil" and a cover of Eddy Grant's "Electric Avenue".[6] At this time the band undertook its first significant tour.[7] The self-titled 1997 album was licensed by Attic Records to Edel AG in Germany,[3] Roadrunner Records in the Netherlands, and TWA in Australia. None of the band’s work was released in the USA.

With their popularity faltering due to popular culture's shift from alternative rock toward electronica in the late 1990s, the band broke up following the 1997 album.[1] Sobczak continued with record engineering/production, later becoming chief engineer at The Studio at Puck's Farm,[8] and Kendall returned to his career as a DJ later DJing at the Swan in England. Major returned to studio work with Toronto's Wellesley Sound studio, while Quinn and Mee have continued to collaborate under the band name the Day After.[1]

Discography[edit]

  • The Family Worship EP (Virgin Music Canada/EMI Records Ltd.) (1995)
  • Why Ask Why (Virgin Music Canada/EMI Records Ltd.) (1995)
  • Raggadeath (Attic Records/Universal) (1997)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Wha’ Happen?: Raggadeath". The Grid, March 11, 2013.
  2. ^ "Raggadeath funk with the genres". UWO Gazette. October 24, 1997. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f LeBlanc, Larry (19 April 1997). "Canada's Raggadeath on the Rise". Billboard (Vol. 109 No. 16). Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 64. ISSN 0006-2510 – via Google Books. 
  4. ^ "Raggadeath loses member; Koze deported to Britain, band's label says". Montreal Gazette, September 1, 1995.
  5. ^ "MuchMusic awards honor best of Canadian music video". Ottawa Citizen, September 28, 1995.
  6. ^ "Throbbing beat deserves hearing". Ottawa Citizen, May 24, 1997.
  7. ^ "Band's `wicked fusion' defies definition: Raggadeath runs gamut from industrial to reggae and techno". Ottawa Citizen, April 24, 1997.
  8. ^ "The Studio At Pucks Farm". Exclaim!, April 3, 2008.