CONCERT PREVIEW: SOJA, Alpha Blondy play Lake Tahoe Reggae Festival

SOJA reggae

SOJA hits Tahoe onstage at 9 p.m. Saturday during the Lake Tahoe Reggae Festival in the MontBleu Amphitheater.

When SOJA goes onstage Saturday, June 29, promoter Paul Reder’s prediction will be a fact: the Lake Tahoe Reggae Festival is an annual event.

The president of PR Entertainment made the claim a year ago after sod was installed and a music venue was built in the former tennis courts’ area south of the MontBleu Resort, Hotel, Casino & Spa.

The second annual Lake Tahoe Reggae Festival features SOJA, Alpha Blondy, Passafire, Stick Figure, Tomorrow’s Bad Seed, Island of Black & White and Squarefield Massive. It is the first of four major summer concerts in the MontBleu Outdoor Arena.

“The first year is always a good litmus test on whether or not the community is going to support an event like this and last year the reggae festival was our single most successful event,” Reder told Tahoe Onstage. “It was not a hard decision to bring it back this year and do it on the same weekend. It’s a great way to open up the series of concerts.”

The inaugural concert in 2012 was headlined by Pepper and Katchafire on a beautiful opening weekend of summer. The only glitch might have been long lines for drinks, Reder said that won’t be an issue this year.

“We’ve moved the vendor village and the food and beverage to the upper parking lot to the right of the festival so it’s going to be more conducive for flowing traffic,” he said.”We have also added bleachers in the back, all general admission.”

This year’s headliners are a top reggae band from the United States and Alpha Blondy, an worldwide popular band from the Ivory Coast.

“SOJA are for a live performance one on the top grossing domestic reggae bands in the country,” Reder said. “They are in the same league as U.S. reggae bands like Rebelution and Slightly Stupid. Alpha Blondy is internationally recognized. I like the balance of young and old in this festival.

MC J Ras will host the event, which starts at 1 p.m. and the last band, Soja starts at 9 p.m.

Reder said to bring a blanket to sit on but leave high back chairs, outside food and bdrink, umbrellas and tall hats at home. Food and beverage vendors are available as well as arts and crafts vendors with “irie” reggae accessories and clothing.

General admission tickets are $40 (plus tax and fees), while kids under 12 are $10 and little ones under 6 are free!  Purchase tickets at, or by calling 1-775-588-3515. Tickets will be available at the gate.

MontBleu Outdoor Concerts

All shows are general admission

 June 29 — SOJA, Alpha Blondy, Passafire, Stick Figure, Tomorrow’s Bad Seed, Island of Black & White and Squarefield Massive, 1 p.m. Tickets: $40; $10 children ages 6-12 , free under 6. Phone: 775-588-3515. Buy online:

June 14 — the B-52s, the Sunshine Band, 7 p.m., $40

July 18 -– Slightly Stoopid, Atmosphere, $6 p.m., $37.50

 Aug. 21 – Rebelution, Matisyahu, 6 p.m., $30 advance or $35 day of the show


About Tim Parsons

Tim Parsons is the editor of Tahoe Onstage who first moved to Lake Tahoe in 1992. Before starting Tahoe Onstage in 2013, he worked for 29 years at newspapers, including the Tahoe Daily Tribune, Eureka Times-Standard and Contra Costa Times. He was the recipient of the 2011 Keeping the Blues Alive award for Journalism.

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