Akae Beka (Vaughn Bejamin)-Tribute To A Reggae Revolutionary

He has been described as an influential visionary, an extraordinary lyricist and an introspective observer of human behaviour. Whatever title you may choose to assign to Akae Beka, one thing remains consistent and that is his influence in the world of roots and reggae was undeniable. His manager, Adrian Bluford, confirmed Akae Beka’s passing via social media yesterday. Thank you for your contribution Akae Beka. Your works will definitely be missed. Word. Sound. Power.

Vaughn Benjamin | August 13, 1969 – November 4, 2019

Five Things About Akae Beka:

  1. Vaughn Bejamin was born in Antigua on August 13th 1969 and moved to the island of St. Croix in the Virgin Islands when he was eight (8) years old. From a very young age he showed his talent with verbal and musical expression. He was the son of Antiguan music legend Ronnie Benjamin Sr.
  2. In 1989 he and his brother (Ron Benjamin) formed the reggae band Midnite . The band became a very influential roots reggae band. Their debut album released  in 1997 was entitled Unpolished. In 1999 the band gained even more attention with their release of  Ras Mek Peace which provided clever plays on words but which also provided deep introspective looks into spirituality.
  3. The band had over 55 releases and toured the world which included their longest tour of three weeks in South Africa. Midnite’s album, Beauty For Ashes was named as Reggae Album Of The Year in 2015.***
  4. After an almost twenty year run together as the band Midnite, in 2015 the brothers embarked on solo journeys. Vaughn’s work continued under the name “Akae Beka.” He released 11 projects, the last one “Mek A Menshun” in July under Zion High Productions label. *
  5. Although Vaugh and his brother left the Virgin Islands in 1994 to pursue their musical careers in the US, he often returned to St. Croix to participate in Dub in the Rainforest and other local reggae shows.

 

Sources:

*https://viconsortium.com/breaking-news/the-sudden-death-of-influential-roots-reggae-visionary-vaughn-benjamin-of-midnite-band-and-akae-beka-has-rocked-the-virgin-islands-and-reggae-community-around-the-world/ 

** https://www.allmusic.com/artist/midnite-mn0000892857/biography

*** https://heavy.com/entertainment/2019/11/vaughn-benjamin-dead/

 

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MISSION: To elevate the brand of Caribbean culture in the fields of MUSIC, BUSINESS and the ARTS by celebrating the work of cultural ambassadors while advocating for upcoming Caribbean talent1.

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