Chali 2na Heads to VI Jam Fest, then West Coast Run with Galactic

With the VI Jam Fest on St. John, Virgin Islands, less than two weeks away, the name at the top of the leaderboard is Chali 2na. Previously, we’ve highlighted other headliners, including Zach Deputy, Passafire, and INITY Xplosion; now we’ll talk about the former Jurassic 5 and Ozomatli star who continues to delight on stage.

Chali 2na

Over the past couple of years, Chali 2na has collaborated with New Orleans’ outstanding young jazz sextet Naughty Professor, Krafty Nuts, Cut Chemist and others. During January’s Jam Cruise, he lit it up in performance with Cut Chemist and in some blistering sit-ins, especially with OGGAT (old guard Garage A Trois) and Galactic:

There was a lot of excitement for the pairing of Chali 2na and Cut Chemist, and they delivered on that promise, crushing all sorts of tunes. Of course, there were lots of Jurassic 5 hits, and Cut Chemist blew out a great “Intergalactic,” too.

Chali 2na & Cut Chemist | Jamcruise 18 | Day 2 | Photo © Roger Gupta 2020

I was even more pumped for this OGGAT show (Garage A Trois) as it became Garage A Quatre when Mike Dillon, also a member of later iterations of GAT, joined them on the pool deck. The magic that occurs when Dillon and Stanton Moore connect is magnificent. They locked horns often, huge smiles on their faces. Chali 2na was invited up for a collab. To my ears, this was one of the best performances I’ve ever heard from him (a second would come Sunday).

Chali 2na & OGAT – Jam Cruise 18 – Jesse Faatz

I made it to the closing theater set with Galactic, who own that slot by dint of the fact that they have been on every Jam Cruise. Chali 2na again guested and was brilliant.

His name is Charles Stewart, and he reminds us that he is “a painter who can rap.” From Chicago, he now calls Los Angeles home. He has recorded two albums of his own, four with Jurassic 5 plus another five EPs, and dozens of guest appearances with names as diverse as Linking Park, Sergio Mendes, Soulive, Blackalicious and Cut Chemist.

Chali 2na & Cut Chemist courtesy of Jam Cruise 18. Photo Credit: Chris Monaghan

Most importantly, he is a warm, engaging man onstage and off, always talking to fans and musicians alike with his inviting style, quick wit, and powerful words. Chali 2na is the perfect person to rock VI Jam Fest in its second year.

Chali 2na



03/25  Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas | Las Vegas NV
03/26  The Van Buren | Phoenix AZ
03/27  Fonda Theatre | Los Angeles CA
03/28  The Warfield | San Francisco CA



03/05VI Jam Fest | Neptune’s Lookout | St. John VI
05/29-31Soundcrash Funk & Soul Weekender | Dreamland | Margate GBR



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