Star Theater, Portland, OR

It’s a bit late to call Protoje an up-and-coming reggae artist, he’s already one of the hottest tickets on the Jamaican music circuit. Music is in his blood. In 1972, his mother, Lorna Bennett, collaborated with legendary producer Harry J to record the smash reggae hit Breakfast in Bed.

I sat with Protoje backstage at the Star Theater in Portland as he wound down from his show. During our interview, he crumbled a thumb-sized bud onto the arm of the sofa in a practiced way. On stage, Protoje embodies a tempestuous creativity. Backstage, he was patient and thoughtful, qualities he brought both to our conversation and to his roll-up. I asked him first about the qualities he aspires to as a reggae artist.


On roots reggae…

“Check it. The music I do is not traditional roots, like Midnite or whatever. But

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