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Meta and the Cornerstones Paint the Future of Reggae

Duffy-Marie Arnoult/WireImage

Meta and the Cornerstones have been called the future of reggae. Frontman Meta Dia, a Senegalese transplant, sings in French and his native dialects Wolof and Fulani, but when he croons in English his voice bears an uncanny resemblance to one of his inspirations — the great Bob Marley. Dia started performing on the streets of Dakar at age 14, inspired by Marley and Gregory Isaacs after hearing them played on the radio. He formed his first band in 2000 and crossed the Atlantic two years later where he eventually would join forces with the Cornerstones — a 5-man ensemble that brings Caribbean, Asian and Middle Eastern influences to Dia’s afropop-reggae. At 6’3″ and some change — if you include the Marge Simpson-beehive of dreads atop his crown — Dia’s messages are as big as he is. The band released their debut, ‘Forward Music,’ in 2008 and plan to followup with a new album this winter. Check out Meta and the Cornerstones during their monthly New York City residency at 92YTribeca on Nov. 6.

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