It's confirmed. After seven years in Rotorua, Raggamuffin is moving to Auckland.

That's not the only change in store for the reggae festival's eighth event, which will be held months earlier across two stages and on just one day: Saturday, December 13.

It will be headlined by UB40 and Ice Cube, with Fiji, Etana, Gappy Ranks & P-Money, Katchafire, Aaradhna, Sammy Johnson, Brownhill, House of Shem, Chronixx and Tomorrow People all included on the bass-friendly bill.

The move follows rumours of losses from this year's festival in February, which was headlined by Damian Marley, Shaggy, Tiki Taane and Ardijah.


Though the festival's new home in Auckland hasn't yet been confirmed, promoter Andrew McManus is confident the move is a positive one.

"We've given Rotorua a good go. But we feel the event would be better served in a city with a greater population base," he said.

"We're delighted to be bringing Raggamuffin to Auckland and we hope our fans will continue to support the event and that we will be encouraging new fans to come along."

After a series of spats and legal issues that saw two different versions of UB40 touring separately, the original line-up of Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue will be performing and they're promising to include new songs in a set that will still include hits like Red Red Wine.

Ice Cube might be more known for his acting chops in movies like 22 Jump Street, but he delivered a killer set in Manukau in August, 2007 at an aggressive show that's still remembered fondly by hip-hop fans.

The festival, which is being co-presented by hip-hop label Dawn Raid, will include two stages: a reggae stage and an urban stage.

A second line-up announcement is due in August around the same time tickets go on sale through Ticketmaster.
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- TimeOut