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Get up, stand up at Coney’s Aug. 14 reggae party

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Let’s get together and feel all right (in Coney).

The Boardwalk and beach will be the site of a jamming party on Aug. 14 complete with the sounds of reggae and other types of Jamaican pop music spanning six decades. All afternoon, Brooklyn-based DJs will blast dancehall, rocksteady, ska and the classic roots reggae popularized by Bob Marley and the Wailers.

The festival is a reinvention of the “sound system” parties that have been all the rage in Jamaica since the 1950s. DJs hook their speakers up to a generator, converting an outdoor lot into a dance club. “Coney Island is a great outdoor setting for these sound system parties,” said even organizer Carter Van Pelt, a radio DJ who has hosted four previous reggae jams in Coney Island. “It’s a great way to introduce people to Jamaican music.”

But you don’t have to relax like you’re on a Caribbean island to enjoy the party. Music fans are encouraged to “dutty wine” — a Jamaican dance of body contortions — and grab the DJ’s microphone to freestyle.

“That’s a fun aspect of dancehall tradition,” Van Pelt said.

Coney Island Reggae Beach Party (Boardwalk at W. 19th Street in Coney Island), Aug. 14, 2–8 pm. Free. For info, visit soundliberation.org.

Posted 12:00 am, August 4, 2011
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