WAILERS TAKE THE STAGE FOR THE FIRST TIME WITHOUT ‘THE SKIPPER’
This article comes from the archives of the Midnight Dread (www.midnightdread.com). A review of The Wailers very first public performance after Bob Marley passed on May 11, 1981. The fateful day is Saturday, October 24, 1981. The event? The First Annual Berkeley Reggae Sunburst at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, CA.
Also included in the article are reviews of performances by Jamaican singing prodigy Hugh Mundell (if you don’t own Africa Must Be Free By ’83 stop reading and go buy now!) and The Wailing Souls.
Many thanks to Midnight Dread for sharing this historic document!
The words of the Midnight Dread:
“There is an amazing story behind the mounting of The Berkeley Reggae Sunblast as it came within months of Bob Marley’s death & was the first concert from The Wailers et al outside JA after Bob passed. Under my consult it became even a bigger reunion of sorts with Joe Higgs & The Wailing Souls added to the bill. Judy Mowatt, Marcia Griffiths, Hugh Mundell, Ras Kiddus, & Azeem also performed. Jamaican Gus Brown was the keyman producer behind the scenes backed by UC Berkeley Arts & Lectures and Rocktography USA. It was a very emotional experience for everyone. Reggae Sunblast became the template for Reggae On The River & provoked rock impresario Bill Graham to arrange an exclusive deal with the Greek Theatre which blocked any chance for a Second Annual Sunblast. Bruce Dancis’ excellent review captures the long and essentially mournful though uplifting day quite well”
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