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Christafari

Christafari was the first Christian reggae band. Upon seeing the group's name and the fact that founder Mark "Tansoback" Mohr sports long dreads, one might deduce that the bandmembers promote a combination of Rastafarianism and Christianity, but the band's moniker actually comes from the Latin derivation of the Greek New Testament word "Christafari," meaning a group of people who represent Christ.

Christafari was founded in 1990 by born-again Christian Mark Mohr. At one time, Mohr, an aficionado of Jamaican culture and reggae music, was a Rastafarian himself -- mostly, he claims, because it sanctioned the frequent use of marijuana. When he first began listening to reggae music, he didn't like it, but a family vacation to Jamaica changed his perspective. By the time he recommitted to Christ and gave up ganja at a church summer camp, Mohr was well-versed in roots reggae and different dancehall styles. Fluent in Jamaican patois, Mohr is known as an excellent toaster and ragamuffin.

Over the band's career, over 60 members have appeared on-stage and in the studio. Christafari's other frequent members include lead singer Erik "Earth Man" Sundin, a son of Salvation Army missionaries who has himself been a missionary in Jamaica and Latin America, and has also worked with urban kids in the U.S. Vocalist/keyboardist Marky "Rage" Sandiford hails from Barbados, where he once earned a "Male Vocalist of the Year" title; he also composes, arranges, and produces for the band. Percussionist Ken "Mr. Mention" Yarnes has been playing drums since childhood and has a music degree from Cal State Long Beach. Guitar player Bill "Painta-Man" Kasper once toured with such reggae acts as Andrew Tosh and Steel Pulse. Keyboardist/vocalist Rob Ray is experienced in playing a variety of genres, while Johnny "Spragga Boom" Guerrero is the band's all-around musician and was involved in Los Angeles-area reggae. He too has played with some of Jamaica's top musicians. Finally, Vanessa Mohr, Mark's wife, performs authentic African dances during concerts and also choreographs the bandmembers. In addition to founding the group, Mark Mohr has also studied at Biola University and started the missionary organization "Jamaica for Jesus," a group that preaches Christian doctrines on Jamaican streets and leads Bible schools. At Christafari concerts, they also assist those audience members with any religious experiences they may have during the performance. Musically, the band reflects Mohr's background in roots reggae and dancehall and is noted for its high-energy concert performances. In the reggae community, however, the band has not been widely accepted, and matters didn't improve when Mohr penned a book deriding Rastafarianism. While staying in a Cleveland hotel, dancehall artist Buju Banton showed his displeasure with the band by attacking and cutting Mohr with a knife, but Mohr, in a gesture of forgiveness, refused to press charges. Mainstream Christians have not always accepted Christafari either, primarily because they are unfamiliar with or suspicious of reggae music. But the band works hard at educating its audiences, and it seems to be working. Their 1995 album, Soul Fire, sold 80,000 copies and earned them a nomination for the Dove Foundation's Urban Album of the Year. In 1996, they were selected to play in the Olympic Village during the Atlanta Summer Olympics. That year they also released Valley of Decision, which they followed three years later with Word Sound & Power.

Gravity landed in 2003 while the dub version, Gravitational Dub, appeared one year later; the children's album Reggae Sunday School followed in 2005. No Compromise was released in 2009, followed by a 20th anniversary world tour. 2012 saw them climb the Billboard charts with the Worship album Reggae Worship: A Roots Revival. Another set of Worship standards followed when the appropriately titled Anthems landed in 2015. ~ Sandra Brennan
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Reggae De Redencion

1. No Te Rindas

2. A Puro Grito

3. El Paso De La Libertad

4. Prueba Su Amor

5. Yeshua

6. La Entrada De Triunfo

7. El Sonido Del Campeon

8. Brilla Sobre Mi

9. Reggae De Redencion

10. Cualquiera

11. Manos Arriba

12. El Prodigo

13. Mesias

14. Yeshua (Version Acustica En Espanol)

x

Track List: Gravitational Dub

1. Hidden Dub

2. The Law Of Gravity In Dub

3. Zionic Dub

4. You Can Dub

5. Destination: Marrakesh

6. Let The Dub Of God

7. Kingdubs In Conflict

8. Risen Dub

9. My Dubstenance

10. Transformed Instrumental

11. Hypnotical Dub System

12. Among The Dub

13. Visionary Dub

14. Liberation Dub

15. Only Dub

x

Track List: Gravity

1. Cannot Hide

2. Guiltiness (Intro)

3. Hiding Place

4. Lion Of Zion

5. Gravity

6. For The Record (Intro)

7. Visions Of The Father

8. Dub Of The Father

9. Rest My Soul

11. Here Comes The Morning

12. This Is The Day (Outro)

13. Colossians 3:16

14. Kingdoms In Conflict

15. The Telephone Game (Intro)

16. Hypocritical System

17. On A Personal Note (Intro)

18. Broken-Down Communication

19. Arise

20. Channel Surfing (Intro)

21. Only Way

22. My Sustenance

x

Track List: Dub Sound & Power

1. Dub Inna De Night

2. Dub Of My Life

3. Babylon Has Fallen

4. Dubbing On The Frontline

5. Lift Him Up And Dub It Up Daily

6. Render Your Dub

7. Why You Ago Look? [a Cappella]

8. Selassie Say Ii (Interlude)

9. Why You Ago Dub?

10. Emancipation Dub-The-Nation

11. My Other Radio (Interlude)

12. The Dub's So Nice

13. Dub And Fire

14. Thief Inna De Night [a Cappella] (Interlude)

15. Everyday Dubbing

16. How You Fe Dub Me?

17. As The Dub Goes By

18. Dub Sound And Power

x

Track List: The First Fruits Of Christafari

1. Live It / Intro

2. Preach The Gospel

3. Jah Is I Light

4. The Blood Of Jesus

5. Selah

6. Majesty

7. Jah Yard / Interlude

8. Jesus First

9. Tribal War / Interlude

10. Armageddon

11. Daniel 7:13-14 / Interlude

12. Ancient Of Days

13. Lift Him Up And Dub It Up Daily

14. Lord, I Lift Your Name On High

15. I Holy One

16. Wisdom

17. Once A Man And Twice A Child (Born Again)

18. Preach The Gospel / Instrumental

19. Higher Meditation

x

Track List: Word Sound & Power

1. Blood And Fire

4. Thief In The Night

5. Love Of My Life

6. Intentions

7. Emancipation Proclamation

9. My Stereo

11. Why You Ago Look?

14. Food For The Hungry

16. Warriors

18. Talawa (Lift Him Up And Edify Him Daily)

19. Render Your Heart (It's Only What You've Done For The Lord)

20. Cry No More

21. For My Father's Sake

x

Track List: Valley Of Decision

1. Valley Of Decision

2. Can't Stop

4. Best Friend

5. Dinghi (Interlude)

6. My Eyes

7. Modern Day Pharisee

8. Surrender

9. Set Me Free

10. Freedom Dub

11. Conquering Lion (Intro)

12. Jungle Inna Babylon

13. Keep On Looking Up

14. Live This Love

15. Big Dance (Interlude)

16. Time

17. Him Die Fi Yuh

19. No Puedo Dejar (Can't Stop Spanish)

x

Track List: Reggae Worship: A Roots Revival

1. How Great Is Our God

2. He Is Greater Than I

3. Hosanna

4. He Is Coming

5. Everlasting God

6. Great Things/Psalm 126

7. Agnus Dei

8. Faithful One

9. To Obey

10. Garden

11. Song Of Hope/Heaven Come Down

12. Celebrate You

13. Every Day Of My Life

14. I Surrender All

15. I Shall Not Be Moved

16. Roots Revival

17. Resolute/Old Rugged Cross/At The Cross

x

Track List: Soulfire

1. Listening

2. Thanks And Praise (Interlude)

3. Selah

4. Christafari

5. Soulfire

6. Inside Burning

7. Niyabinghi (Interlude)

8. Sitting And Watching (Fly Away)

9. Give A Little One Love

10. Uhuru (Interlude)

11. Come Children

12. Spirit Cry

13. Dj Intro

14. Boomerang

15. Wha? (Interlude)

16. Crucified

Comments

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I love Crisafari. I'm a little jelly that my that my cuz got to take a picture with them!��
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We have got to make a better world. And this will !
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rapzilla.com your welcome ✌
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misstrinity7 9
My father loves dubsteps!
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misstrinity7 9
Excellent songs Christafari. I love it!!
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They will be there in Calvary chapel in Apple Valley Ca on july 29 can't wait to see them
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This has been my favorite Reggae band for years... Awesome Grooves!!!
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I love this song
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joshua.colos p r i n g s
Soulfire is my favorite reggae album of all time.
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Love u Mark & Avi and Christafari
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TY @tonante27. Discovered this shortly after posting. Learned much about the two since then. Would love to catch them in concert sometime. Will see them one day...
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I like hosanna by christafari
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tonante27
@wALDO sLack : Yes Avion is on backing vocals for this song Hosanna..
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On Hosanna, is Avion Blackman accompanying the vocals? Anyone have the LP cover?
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I have been a roots fan long before I gave my life to Christ. I always have loved the easy listening. I stopped listening to reggae a long time ago because the lyrics advocated ideas that were not Christian. Until now that is. Now I have the best of both worlds. Thank you Christafari! ! !
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I like this band...thank s God for Christafari
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I thank God for being able to use all who he creates who chooses to be used by him. All praises to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
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God is Real in Jesus Christ. Forget this world let pray for Jesus Christ to come again for us.
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I don't care what you label thier style or call them, they are extremely talented. Keep on with what you do guys. Jesus be praised!!!
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nwray01
Claiming to be the FIRST Christian Reggae band is completly ridiculous, especially since they were only founded in the 1990s and the found is not even Jamaican. The music is nice though. I've always like the vibe.
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shan.guerrer o 5
Much love!
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These guys are awesome! I have heard them In Olathe, Colorado and they came and did a concert at my church in Farmington, NM. They are nice people and love God very much!
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God B Praized! Good time for a new LP... Amen Phillip, babellira & 1mrsamuel!
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charlenemcda n i e l 5
Love what you doing! GOD BLESS!
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As hard a riddim as any serious dub production. Whether Christian reggae or Rastafarian reggae, we all bow to one creator.

P4peace
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christian reggae is awesome!
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babellira
The Way, Truth, and The Life; Big up! Much Love to da Father of Creation!
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bigblue91
Nice!!!
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1mrsamuel
powerful and simple message of God's love and our adoration for Him
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Very good. Me and Deano Like em
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yvegerano2
Awesome music! What a wonderful way to praise the Lord.
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MAY THE LORD BLESS THEM IN THERE WALK IN CHRIST!
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my love and true reason
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stampoint6
This is a great group to listen to....
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jelcworks
Nice Bio...but Mark's wife's name is Avion Blackmon-Moh r from Trinidad & Tobado.
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jelcworks
I love Christafari no matter what anyone says - they speak and sing the literal Bible. Got all their music! Blessings, Miss JelC
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I used to lesson to world ragge but when I heard Christafari i change to christian music its more positive in my life music has alot of influence in peoples life God Bless you
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dance_like_d a n i e l
I love Christafari - especially the new singer Jennifer Howland. Can't wait for her new CD to be released. The group is awesome.
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seeta_1228
my favorite two groups of music has met!! Love this...wonde r i n g how come I've never heard of them before.
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pmodeste
Wow...never heard of them b4...So Sweet:)
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I'm new to this genre coming from Bob Marley, Buju, Capleton, etc. This group maintains a similar tempo, while keeping the message in sync with scripture. Cool AND the whole gang......

" "For I know the plans I have for you", says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11 (off my coffee cup..)
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sandramundy
NICEEEEEEEEE
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fotihedge
They are sick wit it. Gotta luv dem.
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adnohser
i love christafari i hope thry make more music i saw them once as a teen in alabama-sooo soothing,upl i f t i n g and praiseworthy - g o o d rep for christianity
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foundation artist. Well grounded
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jajirah
I have always been an ardent supporter of Christafari. I wish that they would put out more albums,they sing about Jesus, could it get any better?
I think not!
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somorra
Love the message they send as well as the beat. Music is from God. We are all his people, enjoy the differencein thier music as God celebrates our differences as his people. God Bless.
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truly blessed. dope christian reggae band/ they are the best ive heard
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yup there amazing keep it up
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active07
I just saw them live at my church calvary chapel golden springs it was awesome!! i saw the wailers last summer but this show was better (dont get me wrong the wailers were tight too) i could have been the fact that it was a much smaller show anyway if you get a chance to see them dont miss it. not only great music but even a better message, something that is hard to come by these days. God bless
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