Reggae icon Horace Andy lights up Luminato

24 June 2022 / by Andy Lee
Horace Andy at the Luminato Festival
Horace Andy at the Luminato Festival
Jamaican legend headlines day of free shows at Woodbine Park.

On the ninth day of Luminato, the arts fest gave to us… Jamaican reggae royalty in the form of Horace Andy.

Backed by Toronto’s own Hardcore Band, the septuagenarian Rastafarian gently skanked onto the outdoor stage at Woodbine Park as the early summer sun waned and ganja blazed.

The roots reggae icon sent a steady stream of positive vibrations into the throng, calling for consciousness and dedicating a song to the promoter and volunteers. Hopes of hearing Andy’s classic early-’90s collaborations with U.K. trip-hop pioneers Massive Attack were unrequited as the reggae train kept rolling into the cooling night.

His signature refrain of “money is the root of all evil” fittingly capped off a day of free performances, including local artist Witch Prophet, Montreal jazz vocalist Dominique Fils-Aimé and L.A.’s Sudan Archives.

The American artist preceded Andy sporting the rare trifecta of violin, plunging black halter top and fishnet stockings, as she swaggered and showered the crowd with her sultry fusion of folk and electronica. For her finale, Sudan Archives delighted fans by joining them at the bottom of the grassy knoll, momentarily erasing two concert-less years from our collective memory.