Maxwell Livingstone Smith is 70 years old now, founding The Upsetters who eventually became Lee “Scratch” Perry’s house band. He has been an active Roots Reggae performer since 1965 and tonight he’s playing to a busy Concorde 2 in Brighton as part of a UK tour.
Dressed in an orange jumpsuit and with grey dreadlocks flowing down his back, he leads the Charmax band through hisSka, Rocksteady and Roots Reggae classics, keeping the crowd dancing with his exuberant performance. It’s a good mixed crowd, with the younger members of the audience singing along to all the old classics, always a good sign to see an older musician appealing to people through the decades.
We get to hear “Three Blind Mice”, a take of a police raid on a party set to the tune of the old nursery rhyme. “One Step Forward”, “Milk And Honey”, “War Ina Babylon” and everyone’s favourite “Chase The Devil” all go down well, with his tight band laying down danceable Roots Reggae grooves. An assured performance from a consummate professional and Reggae legend.