After being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March, reggae pioneer Jimmy Cliff has launched his most ambitious North American onslaught in some time. His current tour is billed as his most extensive in two decades, and, fronting what has been described as a young band, he's inspired accolades for performances at Bonnaroo and elsewhere. His first album in six years, Existence, reportedly has been almost finished for a while, but no specific release date has been announced. And he's working on a new screenplay. The Jamaican singer and actor is probably best known for starring in and providing much of the soundtrack for The Harder They Come, the landmark 1972 reggae film that paralleled some of his own experiences, especially arriving in Kingston fresh from the countryside and scoring his first hit within months. Cliff is responsible for a handful of genuine nuggets, including "You Can Get It If You Really Want," "Sitting in Limbo," and "Many Rivers to Cross." He'll reportedly play a mix of classics and newer tunes, including some from the forthcoming album, which is supposed to address current topical issues. He's also reworked his classic antiwar "Vietnam" in terms of the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan.
Sat., Aug. 7, 7:30 p.m., 2010