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Ronnie "i-Ron Lion" Brandon
...was born on the southside of Chicago, Illinois in October of 1974. He moved with his family to a small town in Virginia called Harrisonburg, in September of 1983, into the neighbourhood of NBA legend Ralph Sampson, an older friend now!
Music began in Chicago though, as a youth he sang lead in the gospel choir and it was a family tradition for him and his siblings to sing and perform on a regular at home to keep entertained and busy! Also, the gospel music scene in Chicago was major and his mother was deep into it!
Immediately after moving to Virginia he became affected by the "new thing", hip hop. He started scratching his dads vinyl records and buying everything Def Jam distributed! By 1988 he had developed decent writing & rap delivery skills and started forming groups and bands with other area youth, writing songs and performing them at local festivals and events, particularly Hip Hop, R&B & Reggae!
After graduating high school in 1992, he went on to attend Radford University in southwestern Virginia, where he would start developing his own production skills and recording himself and others over his hip hop trax, making mixtapes and contacting industry professionals, and giving demos to artists who performed at the college, like The Fugees in 1996.
That same year Chris "I-Nut" Whitley, one of his childhood bandmates would go on to become keyboardist for legendary reggae harmony group Culture's backing band . Though the two had parted ways for a few years they stayed in touch on occassion and would slowly re-unite! This relationship allowed for alot of serious learning and progress with the assistance of internationally known rootsman Joseph Hill of Culture sharing wisdom & knowledge, through the years, basically the last decade before his passing while out on tour.
By 2000, iRon Lion had served as lead singer of Richmond, Virginia Based reggae band The Razor Posse, lead by well known Wailer's former drummer Ernest "Zebb" Williams, as well as Stable Roots reggae band lead by Chris "I-nut" Whitley. During this time he wrote many songs which reggae fans and a few reggae radio dj's seemed to adore. This also meant he had toured along the east coast for the first time as lead singer of two popular reggae bands, who had professional representation.
In 2001, iRon Lion home-produced his own mix cd titled, "Watch Out" and started booking himself with The Knotty Lionz Band name included, hiring seasoned professionals to back him. With assistance from quality elder reggae musicians, it would take no time to start returning to the venues who had been kind before and more!
Along the way, he served as a reggae radio dj at the local college, James Madison University, while continuing to tour and from 2005-2009 he had the blessing of working with SOJA, who recently won The Grammy Award. He acted as a liaison between there manager and the venues in his area and also opened and promoted some shows for them!
At this point, iRon Lion had performed in venues and festivals as far as New Jersey to South Carolina, often opening for reggae legends, from The Wailers Band to Morgan Heritage and in popular venues like Seacret's in Ocean City, Md. He even opened for reggae icon Jimmy Cliff at The Sprint Pavilion in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2010!
In 2016, iRon Lion would reach back and record some of the songs from his Stable Roots days with Chris "I-Nut" Whitley, which would result in the "Reggae Party" cd and a Virginia Reggae Award for favorite cd. The two would continue to pull from their catalogue and after a 6 year process, in 2023 the "Oneness" cd/playlist was released to fans satisfaction and is currently growing in popularity daily along with other songs created by iRon Lion under the iRon Lion Produx banner.
"We love making riddims and recording with various artist too, so that's in the plans always!" He mentions!
"As things grows, I look forward to more band recordings in the studio , tv/radio/dj interviews, festival & club performances across the country while gathering with righteous souls!!" He states! "Basically, carving our own lane and spreading good vibes along the way! Now that my kids are older I'm ready to take things alot farther!"
The Knotty Lionz Band
...ARE MUSICIANS WHO HAVE BACKED IRON LION OVER 20 YEARS ON THE EAST COAST USA!
FAMILIAR FACES ARE TOO MANY TO NAME AS THIS BRAND/BAND HAS BEEN BLESSED TO WORK WITH THE BEST THAT REGGAE HAS TO OFFER THROUGH THE YEARS!
FROM CLASSIC COVERS TO BACKING OTHER ARTISTS LIKE IRON LION AND MORE, TKLB HAVE PROVEN TO BE A GREAT NAME TO CALL ON FOR A REGGAE PARTY!
Anytime TKLB is in your area , expect a
One Love, Positive Vibration!
Iron Lion is one of Virginia’s premier reggae artists & band directors. He also performs acoustic style adding Motown & other classic popular songs to his performance!
Similar to Bob Marley,Stevie Wonder,John Lennon,John Legend & Shaggy, iRon Lion does not dissappoint!
iRon Lion has opened and works with many legendary reggae artists & labels. He is often called on to perform at festivals, private parties, wedding receptions, clubs and more!
Not many other artist blends soul, reggae, rock & more like iRon Lion does. He is a one of a kind! "Most of my songs were written in a park near my home on my acoustic guitar! I love going for walks in nature and writing, you can hear God & Mother Nature that way!" he states!
The 2016 winner of the Virginia Reggae Award for favorite cd for his debut cd “Reggae Party”, iRon Lion has a long list of original songs that reggae fans adore!
iRon Lion is known to be easy to book and will work with most budgets. His strongest markets are major east coast cities when performing on multi band shows with other reggae greats like The Wailers Band,SOJA,Ziggy Marley,Steel Pulse,Shaggy,etc.
Book an iRon Lion appearance today to satisfy your audience and add some Caribeean & soul flavour to your atmosphere!
iRon Lion keeps the reggae jammin & spirits up!