Chris Murray Combo is an acoustic based trio featuring Ben Farrar on drums and backing vocals, Eddie “Chiquis” Lozoya on bass and backing vocals, and Chris Murray on acoustic guitar and lead vocals. Combining elements of ska, reggae and folk music, CMC creates a sound that is both fresh and roots.
Since 2003, CMC has been the host band at Bluebeat Lounge, the world’s longest running weekly ska/reggae concert series, at Knitting Factory in Hollywood. In addition to US dates, the group has gigged in Mexico City and toured Japan twice, including a performance at the highly prestigious Fuji Rock Festival.
Ben Farrar began performing 15 years ago with veteran LA group See Spot, and is also currently active as a vocalist in Boogaloo Assasins. A gifted drummer and charismatic performer, Ben is also a little crazy but harmless.
Chiquis began his live performance career with roots reggae outfit Irie Beats, and has become the most active bass player in LA’s thriving roots ska/rock steady scene, currently active with The Expanders, See Spot and Boogaloo Assassins. Within the past two years, Chiquis has also performed in backing groups for numerous veteran Jamaican artists including Alton Ellis, Rico Rodriguez, Pay Kelly (The Techniques), Leonard Dillon (The Ethiopians) and Vernon Maytone (The Maytones).
Chris Murray led Toronto-based modern ska group King Apparatus through two albums and numerous North American tours 1987-1995. In 1996, Chris released his debut solo album, The 4-Track Adventures of Venice Shoreline Chris, and began performing solo acoustic, a format unprecedented in the global ska scene. He has since toured extensively through Europe, South American, Japan, Mexico, Canada and the US, many times being the first international ska artist ever to play in some remote city.
In subsequent years, Chris has released three additional solo albums and one EP, entitled Six Songs. For his most recent release, Slackness, Chris teamed up with New York’s finest, The Slackers, fusing Jamaican and American aesthetics seamlessly to create a highly diverse musical collaboration.
Why So Rude, the debut album release for Chris Murray Combo, was recorded in Los Angeles and mixed in Sao Paulo, Brazil with veteran producer Victor Rice. The album is scheduled for release in April, and CMC will be hitting the road in support this summer.