DJing the Bad Brains Show in Asbury Park

Bad Brains Asbury Park Show
When I was approached to DJ the Paul Green School of Rock Fest I said yes, but under one condition. I had to open up before Bad Brains. I’ve been a fan since high school, and like a lot of the music I review in this blog, it really changed my life. The supercharged energy of hardcore music fused with a Rastafarian mind state and Reggae riddims would never be matched IMHO by any other band. A chance to open up for them was something I jumped on. I called my old friend and DJ partner DJ Un-G to lend a hand as well, as he is just as huge fan as I am. The day itself went well, even if the production company did not bring a mixer, and opted for 3 turntables with no monitor. We came through with the missing pieces though. Jack the Ripper started the day off with his mix of Punk Rock, dirty Soul, and some classic reggae inspired bands. DJ Un-G and I took over mid day, and working doubles of classic Rock, some 90’s Alternative gems, Hip-Hop, and Funk and Soul. The mixed crowd of Rocker Moms, punk kids, old school heads and locals responded well to what we were playing. There even was some impromptu pop locking by a full on Skinhead with braces and 10 hole Docs when “Planet RocK” hit the sound system. Before the Bad Brains came on, we got to see a lot of talented students of the School of Rock, as well as guys like Vernon Reid, Adrian Belew, McRad (Philly skate rock what!), and the rantings of Jello Biafra. I had heard notorious stories of him being a dick, and well, they were true. After telling him that seeing him perform and anticipation for the Bad Brains playing made me feel like I was in 9th grade again, he shot back with: “As if that’s a good thing.” What a crochity old man. He then jumped into his rented Ford Focus and took his out of shape middle age body back to California or wherever he lives. He ranted about Governor Arnold on the stage, during “California Über Alles changing lyrics to chastise the Governator. His set sounded great even with a student band, but his rants grew tiresome.

I had an idea of what I wanted to play during the set before the Bad Brains, and dropped a lot of classic Dub, Rocksteady, and Roots stuff, improvising on to what the crowd was feeling. It definitely set up a good vibe for the band and the fans. Dr. Know, guitarist for the Bad Brains was feeling the vibe, and let me know it after the gig. For me, meeting him and HR, plus getting props from them for my set made my day. I got to watch most of their set from the stage. The show itself was intense, from opening up with “I Against I” to some new material to classics like “Soul Craft”, “Banned In DC”, “I and I Survive”, and my favorite “Attitude”. HR was not the energetic front man he once was, but the rest of the guys had the energy from the old days and put on a really great show. Here are some photos from the show, and a video as well. I will be back midweek with a new review. Keep Diggin’!

Photos
DJ Prestige and the mighty HR
DJ Prestige and HR
DJ Prestige
Pres
DJ Un-G
DJ UN-G
Dr. Know
Dr. Know
HR and Daryl
HR and Daryl
HR
Human Rights

Videos
Bad Brains Live in Asbury Park at the Paul Green School of Rock Festival Video 1

Bad Brains Live in Asbury Park at the Paul Green School of Rock Festival Video 2

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12 responses to “DJing the Bad Brains Show in Asbury Park

  1. Yeah, honestly one of, if not the best gig I’ve ever had the pleasure of doing. The Playboy Mansion was fun, but this gig was really on another level. To have a band you look up to be into what your spinning before one of their gigs with the original lineup, and then voice it to you made me feel really great.

  2. Sound like a real great time. I’ll ask my buddy if he still has the tape; it may be tucked away in storage somewhere-oh wait! I just remembered he did put the best parts on a DVD somewhere. We’ve literally got thousands of DVDs lying around here with all kinds of various stuff on ’em. If I find it I’d love to send you a copy. BTW I must apologise and wish you a belated happy Bday! What a great present you got doing the show, huh? Let me go look for that DVD.

    Peace and blessings.

  3. Nice post. Very envious, I is. Bad Brains are one of the great, truly legendary rock bands of our (or any) time. Any poor bastard who has not spent time studying and listening to their music (especially that ROIR cassette; am I right, people?!?) just ain’t down.

    Ask MCA. Ask Jay-Z. Ask Rick Rubin. Ask Lee Perry. Hell, ask Axl Rose for all I care. They’ll tell you the same thing.

    Ferocious, clever, spot-on devastatingly bombastic punk rock and reggae. The best.

  4. agreed. despite HR’s non energetic movement (his biggest movements were those I caught on the video..( sorry for the poor audio, I was right near the subs on stage), the energy level everywhere else was intense. indeed a legendary band without a doubt.

  5. My brother and I drove up from D.C. to see the show.
    We were plastered on the front railing waiting for the Bad Brains to hit the stage. Your DJing was classic. Had us moving the whole time with the old school beats and reggae. Brought us back to the old days. The family in the house next door was also rocking out on your grooves.
    THANKS for posting the Videos.

  6. I was at this show, working the Rock School Radio. I also played the Hendrix show, but the true highlight of the festival was Bad Brains. Daryl, Earl and Doc were some of the nicest people I’ve ever met. HR was on his own planet (I’ve come to understand that this is “normal”). I interviewed him for Rock School Radio, check it out.

    rockschoolradio.com
    click “Now Playing…”
    Listen to the HR interview.

    Your set was great too, I was jamming out to you before Brains.

  7. Hey I really want one of those DVDs. I was at this show, and I literally had the best night of my life. There were lots of cameras around recording the concert and I want a copy. If anyone can send me one it would be cool/

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