The name is legendary: Bob Marley and the Wailers. Decades have passed since the group recorded their final album, Uprising, which was released in 1980. The following year, reggae fans around the world mourned the untimely death of Marley, who passed away from cancer. Marley, along with Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh and later members of the group (like Aston “Family Man” Barrett on bass), forever impacted reggae music and its prominence in pop culture. Their compilation album Legend, released in 1984, is the best-selling reggae album of all time.
After Marley’s death, remaining members of the group kept on singing, with Aston “Family Man” Barrett forming his own collective, the Wailers Band, in 1981. Throughout the years, the band has toured the world and performed sets from the extensive discography of Bob Marley and the Wailers. While the band has seen members come and go over the year, Barrett has remained a constant.
The Wailers Band is currently touring the US, Australia and Canada. Outpostings had the pleasure to catch a stirring performance at Brooklyn Bowl in NYC on February 18th. The current band lineup: Aston “Family Man” Barrett on bass, Dwayne Anglin and Joshua Barrett on lead vocals, Cegee Victory on backing vocals, Chaka Taylor on keyboards, Melvin Glover on rhythm guitar, Audley Chisholm on lead guitar and Anthony Creary on drums.
The lively band performed the Kaya album in its entirety, with rousing renditions of fan favorites like “Is this Love,” “Sun is Shining” and “Rock my Boat.” While the Wailers Band remains true to the sound of its predecessors, they perform with an energy that is all their own. For two hours, the crowd was dancing, swaying and singing along to every song. It was clear that despite the decades passed since Bob’s last performance, his music still has a hold on people.
To catch The Wailers Band on tour throughout the summer, head to their website and pray that they are performing in a city near you!