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Magyk Brings Its Version of World Beat to Pasadena

August 16, 1992|EDMUND NEWTON

They are billed as a reggae band, but that's just part of it.

Magyk, the regular Tuesday night attraction at Pasadena's Old Town Pub, can launch into a throbbing merengue or a hypnotic African zouk. They can dish out a calypso or a Haitian compas.

"We even play Jimi Hendrix," says lead singer and conga player Jean Etienne.

The band was formed 17 years ago by Etienne and fellow Haitian Carlo St. Juste, a drummer. The pair came to Los Angeles from Florida in the early 1970s, making it into town on a freight train after their van broke down in Texas. They both live in Altadena.

The other band members are Bruce Oliver, bass, and Feliche De La Cruz, guitar.

Magyk leaped into the L.A. area's yeasty club scene, where the band's eclectic world beat style fit right in.

The group has performed on television, notably in "Glitz," a 1987 NBC made-for-TV movie, and they have three albums on their own label, Quiskeya Productions.

The band can keep a bar vibrating with good feelings far into the night, say their many San Gabriel Valley fans.

You can hear it all Tuesday, at the Old Town Pub, 66 N. Fair Oaks Ave., for $2 admission. The first set starts about 9 p.m.

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