Christafari are a US-based Christian reggae band formed around Mark Mohr, who having been raised in a Christian family echoed the story of the prodigal son. In his early teens Mohr sampled cannabis that led to the inevitable reggae/Rastafarian connection. To save their son his family sent him to a Christian camp when he was 17, where through prayer and guidance he returned to the fold. Although Mohr was considered spared he noticed a niche within the reggae market and has since claimed to have pioneered a new genre of Christian reggae. (This assertion was made in spite of the fact that revivalism had been alive and well throughout the early days of reggae and many performers, including Toots Hibbert, Yabby You and Lieutenant Stitchie have unreservedly praised Jesus Christ). Mohr attended Bible College where he was ordained as a pastor and was also inspired to form Christafari. In 1989, he summoned a group of like-minded individuals and embarked on his theological mission . In 1990, he founded the Jamaica For Jesus ministry and continued to preach his message through music. In 1993 the band released their debut, the ambitious Reggae Worship Volume One, which was followed by Soul Fire a year later. The band toured the USA with a number of indie groups and featured on the 1995 US Reggae Sunsplash tour playing in 46 cities. They also performed at Reggae On The River, where emulating Luciano the lead singer seized the opportunity to preach the gospel to the crowd. His sermonising converted a few supporters and led to Mohr conducting three baptisms while at the event. In 1996, the band played at the National Indigenous Olympic Games, the Nashville Music Awards and at the St. Kitts Music Festival alongside Maxi Priest. The same year they were nominated for both a Dove award and Reggae Album Of The Year at the tumescent Tamika Reggae Awards. The Christian movement enrolled the band to play alongside born-again boxer Evander Holyfield at the Charlotte Coliseum, where together they influenced 200 converts. The band was also selected to play at the 1997 Presidential Inaugural Ball. Little was subsequently heard from the band until 1999 when Mohr returned with a new line-up, releasing Word Sound And Power on his own Lion Of Zion label.
Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.