News ©The Wailers News
volume 4 * issue 8 * June 2000
this month's features: 
wailing news * new releases * wailers shorts
wailers net * wailers survey * wailers reporter * back issues

   Aston "Familyman" Barrett recently conducted an interview with the "Black & White" zine, where he commented on everything from his early days in music to being robbed from his just royalties as a member of The Wailers. If you think this is just an ordinary interview, you are in for a great shock, because Familyman holds nothing back in this interview. He aims his disgust at Rita Marley and the Marley children especially, describing how, "Through the cash, they got blindfolded." From the interview you can get a sense of how the people who helped to make Bob Marley & The Wailers what it is today, are now being left out.

Familyman Barrett   The interview is online at the "Black & White" zine's website, which is part of Stubborn Records. It is important that every Wailers fan reads this interview and educates themselves about the fact that the people surrounding Bob Marley are not one big happy family, as is usually portrayed. Instead, people such as Familyman and his late brother, Carlton Barrett, who were longtime Wailers since the late 1960s, are now considered outsiders. As Familyman puts it in the interview about Rita Marley, "She has a lot of dough now and we are the ones who promote the BMW catalog year-in and year-out, non-stop. Not even the family of Bob does that; the kids donŐt promote it, she does not promote it. The Wailers Band does all that."

   These sentiments might be new to some people and therefore sound harsh and unfair, yet they have been repeated by many other members who also helped shape The Wailers' sound. Familyman also delivers truth regarding the current state of Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers, stating, "They donŐt have no culture, they look like roots Rasta but they are in no way praising Jah or the orthodox. They are disguised in Church, some of them fancy clothes and cars and making some big offers in the Church but thatŐs not it." The Marley family, especially the children, now have control over the Bob Marley catalog and it is quite interesting that rather than releasing vaulted material with Bob's original message, they instead choose to only put this material in remixed or remade form under their own names. For instance, the recent "Chant Down Babylon" album is filled with alternate versions and interview segments of Bob Marley & The Wailers, but are smothered with a modern touch. Enough of our ranting, do yourself a favor and read Familyman's interview! We are sure that you will not be sorry because there is so much more vital information contained in the interview.

   Respect is due to Familyman Barrett, not only for his tremendous career, but also for being so up-front in the "Black & White" interview. Our Wailers Survey for the month of June deals with this article and your feelings on it. Please be sure to answer the poll and if you feel the urge, leave your comments as well, at either the main page of this site or down at the bottom of this news page.

   Junior Marvin's forthcoming album entitled "Burnin' Love" has recently been remastered by Junior and is nearly ready for release. We have heard the album in its entirety and thought we would share our feelings about the album. The disc brims with positive music, which is to be expected from the many other songs in his long career. The styles of music presented range from roots reggae on tracks like "Love, Love, Love Today" and "A Reggae Reggae (Rocksteady)" to rhythm & blues on "Let Me Tell You Something" and a Brazilian feel on the vibrant track "It's Your Life." The topics covered on the disc range from love, spirituality and family, which all should have fans of nearly any type of music enjoying every second of it.

Junior Marvin's Burnin' Love   Junior's voice is in top form and his guitar talents have never sounded better and thankfully are heavily featured on the album. The accompanying musicians read like a who's-who of reggae legends, including drummer-extraordinaire Sly Dunbar, percussionist Harry T, who has been a longtime member with Bunny Wailer's Solomonic Reggaestra, Glen DaCosta on saxophone, and David Madden on trumpet. King Sporty, who you may know as the remixer of the infamous King Sporty Mix of Bob Marley & The Wailers' "Buffalo Soldier," is also among the other talented guests on "Burnin' Love."

   Junior's heart and soul can be felt on every song and the level of positivity is a pleasure to experience. It is tough to pick just one favorite song, because there is something here for every mood and musical taste. Until the album is released, you can listen to sound clips for every track on the official Junior Marvin website, including several full-length mp3 songs. After listening to the samples, let Junior himself know what you think by e-mailing him at his very own address, or e-mail them to us and we will be sure to pass them on to Junior. You can find this information and much more at Junior's official site as well.

Reggae Festival Guide   If you want to talk about a great read, check out the Summer edition of the Reggae Festival Guide 2000, for an article written by Roger Steffens called "Old Fire Sticks: My Month with Bunny Wailer and the Making of His Autobiography." The article recounts Roger Steffens and Leroy Jodie Pierson's two-weeks spent with Bunny Wailer in Jamaica working on his autobiography, as well as the work on another Wailers fan's dream, a book entitled Bob Marley and the Wailers: The Definitive Discography.

   The article is written so well that it is almost as if the reader is accompanying Roger and Leroy on their journey. Roger tells the story through journal-like entries and describes stories such as Bunny Wailer having already written the song "Pass It On" in 1962 and would have went with Bob Marley to record this song, when Marley recorded "Judge Not," but Bunny could not get out of school for the day and therefore the song eventually ended up on The Wailers' "Burnin'" album.

Old Fire Sticks   Some of the other highlights in the article include the many day-long sessions of Bunny retelling in great detail, his history as well as that of The Wailers'. Roger mentions in the article that Bunny's autobiography should be out sometime in 2001 and Bunny hopes that it will be accompanied by an album to "illustrate his autobiography." There is a lot of information packed in the article and what is revealed is quite mouthwatering for all Wailers fans.

   You can pick up Reggae Festival Guide 2000 in better stores near you, or you can get more information on their website at: The magazine is filled with mostly U.S. reggae festivals taking place over the next few months, but also features articles on ital foods, Mumia Abu-Jamal and much more.

   We received a glowing review of a Wailers Band performance from April 12th at SOB's in New York City. This review is all the more special because it was written by Oren Makmil, who traveled from Israel to New York, and caught the concert. Many thanks to him for sharing his feelings and experiences!

Wailers Band - Live at S.O.B's in New York City, New York
by Oren Makmil

I have been in New York for the last 45 days and I got to see something that I have been waiting to see for six years: The Wailers, live at S.O.B's in downtown Manhattan. First it took me time to relax after I heard that they were going to perform.

When the show had started, I was all excited and I saw The Wailers start coming on stage, they were: Al Anderson, Earl "Wire" Lindo, Richach Abongy, Marcia Griffiths, plus, I don't know the names of the second girl who sang harmony (she was young just like the young talented girl on drums) and the keyboard player, and of course the most legendary of them all, Aston "Familyman" Barrett. The lead singer was the great ruff talent, Gary "Nesta" Pine, who had the audience right from the start of the show when he sang "No Woman, No Cry," showing everybody his true love for Rastafari and Bob Marley.

Songs like "Want More," "Roots, Rock, Reggae," "Bend Down Low," "Buffalo Soldier," "Lively Up Yourself," "Rat Race," "Positive Vibration," "War-No More Trouble," and many many others were filling that night with conscious reggae music that were written by the king himself. One of the highest moments was when The Wailers did "The Heathen;" Al Anderson's guitar was tearing apart the place (he was so great all the time), and when the band got into the dub part, Nesta Pine started to take his time and talk to the drooling audience by giving his special thanks to Familyman for this song's riddim (as we know, used by various artists). You could see Aston standing behind Pine and giving his best bass riddim with the drummer, while the band was standing firm and listening to Gary Pine's conscious talking over this amazing dub riddim.

In conclusion, I think I was blessed to see The Wailers live, which is something that I've been waiting to see many years and finally it was worth it. I want to say that each of the band members was sharp and great, Nesta Pine is very Bob-like and giving his special ruff and conscious way to Bob's songs (even after the departure of Junior Marvin, Gary took his place on the great side). It is also amazing to see Wire Lindo playing his organ as a pro, just like it was the '70s; the beautiful Marcia Griffiths giving her outstanding voice for Bob songs; Al Anderson who was sharper then ever, and Familyman who took me into shock to see this man as the simple great musician on earth keeping the fire burning for The Wailers, from 1969 until today.

To make it short, I am giving thanks and praise to the Almighty Father who gave me the opportunity to see those great talented musicians.

Long live The Wailers - the greatest band on earth . . .  f  o  r  e  v  e  r
One Love, Aim, Destiny
Jah Rastafari

- Oren Makmil - the biggest Wailers fan from Israel

   FiWi Productions, a New York based media company, has just released two videos that not only feature some of The Wailers' family, but also document the rich history of Jamaican music in general. "Jammin' In Jamaica," originally released on television in 1996, examines a benefit concert put together by the legendary Mystic Revelation of Rastafari, to raise money to rebuild Jamaica after a 1988 hurricane. The concert features the likes of the late saxophonist Roland Alphonso and trumpeter Johnny "Dizzy" Moore. The documentary also includes a performance by Rita Marley, as well as an appearance by producer Coxsone Dodd.

   The second video, "It All Started With The Drums," also produced by FiWi Productions, documents the varied Caribbean musical styles, and features performances by The Wailers, Lord Kitchner, Roland Alphonso, and many others. Both videos run around 60 minutes in length, and can be ordered from FiWi's website.

   Both videos seem to be very interesting, and great additions to any reggae collection. To see footage of legends like Dizzy Moore, Roland Alphonso, and Coxsone Dodd, is a very special, and rare treat!

Full Watts   The newest edition of the Full Watts reggae-zine is out now, and if you are a fan of Marcia Griffiths, this issue will be of special interest to you! Marcia Griffiths, who is currently on tour with The Wailers Band, is not only featured on the cover, but also has 14 total pages devoted to her, including a massive discography, as well as plenty of photos of her. The article also features an interview with Marcia that details her life and her career as the "First Lady of Jamaican Song." Marcia was of course a member of The I-Threes, along with Rita Marley and Judy Mowatt, and within the interview Marcia discusses this experience. "Even the way Bob [Marley] looked at us and the way he saw us as his three little birds, he treated us just the same. And we really reminisce day after day and we will always cherish those moments and we are still together as three sisters who love each other. Nothing is gonna change that."

   This issue, volume 4, number 1, also features a very lengthy and valuable discography of Leroy Smart, and an interview with Lloyd Knibb, the ska beat originator. The issue, and zine in general, is definitely one that every reggae fan should pick up! You can find more information at the Full Watts' website, or by e-mailing the zine's creator, Steve Milne, or by writing to:

Full Watts
10819 Freeman Road
Wilton, CA 95693-9778

   The next issue of Full Watts will come out sometime in the Summer of 2000, and will feature the great Sugar Minott. Do not miss it!

   Augustus Pablo, one of the most important figures in reggae music, who passed away on May 18th, 1999, will be honored with an all-star tribute concert. The event will take place on Saturday, June 17th at the Countryside Club in Kingston, Jamaica. Among the many featured artists will include Earl "Chinna" Smith, Sugar Minott, Dean Fraser, Derrick Harriott, Yami Bolo, Junior Reid, Leroy Sibbles, and many others.

   The show will benefit the Augustus Pablo Foundation, which funds music scholarships in Jamaica. According to the press release, which can be read at the Jammin' Reggae Archives, "It was Pablo's vision to assist the many musically talented youths who are less fortunate in educating themselves." Augustus Pablo, who is even today not given the appropriate recognition that he truly deserves, ranks among the most talented and versatile players in all of reggae music. This concert sounds absolutely amazing and for an incredibly worthwhile cause, so hopefully some of you have the opportunity to attend!

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   July 25th will see the release for the historic Peter Tosh disc, entitled "Live At The One Love Peace Concert." The album captures Peter's entire performance from April 22, 1978 in Jamaica, and is being released by JAD Records. We will have more information as the release date gets closer, so stay tuned!

Yelen   Aston "Familyman" Barrett is one of the featured guests on an up-and-coming African artist named Yelen. The album, Yelen's debut, entitled "Slave," mixes English, Spanish, Arabic, French and his own African Dioula language. Earl "Wya" Lindo and members of the Fully Fullwood Band, who backed Peter Tosh, also guest on the album.

   The album has been released in Africa on Showbiz! Records, but the band is currently looking for worldwide licensing. E-mail Mark Miller for more information about the band, the album and how to book the group.

   Stephen Marley and the Ghetto Youths Crew are featured on the recent soundtrack to the movie "Black & White." The song is entitled "Dem Crazy" and also features the rap group Dead Prez, using snippets of Bob Marley & The Wailers' "Crazy Baldheads." Columbia Records released the soundtrack, and among the other acts on the disc are Mos Def, Mobb Deep and others. The soundtrack is in stores now.

Ky-mani Marley   There is a new 12" single out that features Ky-mani Marley, along with Buju Banton, Beenie Man, Mr. Vegas, united as the Stone Love All-Stars. The song is "Party In Session" and is loosely based on the Black Uhuru classic of the same title. The single, which is on Gee Street/BMG, features several mixes of the song, including "Main Mix," "Instrumental," "Stone Love Remix," and "A capella." If you are a fan of the more dancehall oriented sounds, this single is for you.

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   In the works is a compilation disc which appears to be quite a historical project, bringing together Carlos Santana doing a remake of Bob Marley & The Wailers' "Natural Mystic." According to the press release, found again at Yahoo! News, the Oneness Project, which is a non-profit group livicated to promoting cultural unity, is releasing the compilation, due out sometime in the near future. The Santana remake will also incorporate singer Dionne Farris' "Human" song into the mix. Other artists slated for the compilation include Chaka Khan and Brian McKnight. Stay tuned for more information on this intriguing blend of Santana doing a BMW song!

   Bunny Wailer has several new tour dates in the upcoming months, including a performance at the 9th Annual Peter Tosh Birthday Celebration, in the San Francisco Bay Area on October 14th. There are only select U.S. dates as of now for Bunny Wailers' 2000 tour dates, but to see all of the dates, visit the "2000 tour" link!

Bob Marley Radio Tribute   Alvaro Gaynicotche, aka Bush Teledoctor, has created a great radio tribute show to Bob Marley, with over 2 1/2 hours of music, interviews, and rarities. The show beams from Uruguay and includes such songs as "Oh My Darling," "Guijara Ska," "Nice Time (a capella)," "Jungle Fever," and many others. Among the interviews on the show is phone conversation with Roger Steffens and a 1973 Bob Marley interview. The show is available for everyone to listen to via the Todo Radio website, in the RealAudio format. It is a very fitting tribute and proves that Bob Marley's music is alive in all countries around the globe.

   If you do not know much about the Stock Exchange, have no fear because with the aid of a new website called Hollywood Stock Exchange, you will be able to grasp the concept. The site is basically a game that is free to play and consists of buying fictional stocks in musicians and movies, rather than in companies and corporations as in the real stock market. Best of all, among the many musicians offered in the game is Bob Marley, using the symbol BMARL. The site is all for fun, so give it a try and you might just learn something.

   Some recent Wailers Band concert dates were postponed indefinitely. The shows, originally scheduled for May 5th and 6th at the Norva Theatre in Norfolk, Virginia, had to be postponed because the venue was vandalized and a new fire alarm had to be installed, according to reports. No word yet as to possible reschedule dates.

   It was announced by the Associated Press on May 26th that Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers have cancelled a scheduled concert for June 17th at the Spring Vibration Festival in Wiesen, Austria. The press release stated that Ziggy Marley ``does not want to play in a country with a Nazi in the government,'' referring to Joerg Haider and his ultra-conservative stances and his praising of the Nazi era. You can read more about this story by visiting Yahoo! News.

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WailersNet - 
Don Drummond   On May 6th, a symposium and musical tribute to Don Drummond was held in Mona, Jamaica to honor The Skatalites' late-great trombonist. The event was attended by everyone from Coxsone Dodd to Dermott Hussey, and even Branford Marsalis, and featured performances by Ernest Ranglin, "Deadly" Headly Bennett, Vin Gordon (aka Don Drummond, Jr.), and many others. You can get more information about the event, including listening to the tribute online, at the's Don Drummond tribute concert page.

High Times Ltd.   Earl "Chinna" Smith and his High Time Records label, now has its very own spot on the internet at: On the site you can order many vinyl items from the vast High Times catalog, as well as read a biography about "Chinna," who has an incredibly prolific career. Be sure to visit the site!

   Last but certainly not least, if you pay a visit to the "Bob Marley Magazine" website, you will be able to experience the massive amounts of information for their June update. On the site, you can read an interview with Carlo Massarini who is an Italian journalist and met Bob Marley playing football (soccer) in 1977 in London, England. There is also a review of Bob Marley & The Wailers' 1980 performance in Italy, because 2000 marks the 20th anniversary of the concert which boasted over 100,000 people in attendance. For now, the site is only in Italian, but an English translation is being worked on. If this is not enough, there are also several rare photos of Bob Marley during this Italian performance, as well as other photos of Bob Marley accepting a gold record. The site is a definite must to visit!

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   The results are in for May's Wailers Survey, asking "Do you think The Wailers, as a group, deserve to be inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame?" In total, 579 responses were given and the results reveal that 81% of those people who voted, 471 people in all, agreed that The Wailers as a group deserve to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Only 24 respondents or 4% of the total, believed that they should not, while 14%, or a total of 84 people, said that The Wailers should be inducted separately.

Here are the complete results for May's poll:

May Results

   This month's question asks, after having read the Familyman Barrett interview, "Do you agree with most, if not all of what Aston Familyman Barrett spoke about in his interview?" If you have comments about this question, leave them when you answer the question. We will have these results next month as well as an all new question! All responses are anonymous!

Wailers Survey
Do you agree with most, if not all of what Aston Familyman Barrett spoke about in his interview (see news page)?

Not Sure


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