“...super special. As soon as I heard it I thought 'yeah, getting that on the show!'...”
— David Rodigan MBE
“…a phenomenally slick reggae band…”
— Nightshift Magazine
“...deep, danceable, dubwise grooves...”
— Count Skylarkin
ZAIA are a British dub reggae band with a soul, folk and rock twist.
At its core, ZAIA’s music is inspired by roots reggae and dub both old and new, with influences ranging from Capleton, Gregory Issacs and King Tubby to Gentleman, Chronixx and Protoje. In the song writing process the band's members also draw on their diverse musical backgrounds, incorporating the sounds of Celtic folk, rock, soul, gospel and even drum ‘n’ bass into their own unique brand of dub reggae dance music. The resulting sound has been described as “a real sun-kissed groove, awash with sparkling brass flourishes and cavernous basslines, but with a deep melodic soulfulness at its heart.”
ZAIA was formed in late 2013, with some of its members coming from a previous experimental dub outfit. Initially starting out as an instrumental reggae dance act with guest vocalists, the band finally found the perfect voice for their sound in 2014 when they met Amy MacKown.
2015 saw ZAIA continue to make a name for themselves with their fresh sound and high energy performances. This included support slots with the mighty Channel One Sound System and legendary reggae star and producer Lee “Scratch” Perry, as well as with the UK’s own live dance heroes Gentleman’s Dub Club. They also released their first EP: “Challenge 145”.
2016 saw ZAIA singles “Dark Days” and "Fire in My Heart" played out by David Rodigan (the undisputed king of reggae broadcasting) on his BBC Radio 1Xtra show. The band also finished recording the other tracks for their first full length album (OUT NOW!) and played numerous shows around the UK, including an appearance at Hootananny Brixton and a very special Christmas support slot with the wonderful Macka B.
Our aim is always to produce a genuinely unique creative output: soulful compositions that transport the listener whilst guaranteeing a movement of feet! We love to make people dance! It is such a blessing to play music to an audience, and we hope to play to bigger and bigger crowds across the UK and beyond as the years go by and our following grows.