The Wailers Carry the Torch of Bob Marley's Legacy Into Bogart's Tonight

Bassist Aston “Family Man” Barrett says he made a promise to Marley to keep the band going after his death; The Wailers have been touring now for the nearly four decades since

click to enlarge The Wailers - PHOTO: PROVIDED
Photo: Provided
The Wailers

Though they don’t have their most famous member (for obvious reasons), The Wailers have continuously packed venues on regular tours over the past 38 years, keeping alive their crucial legacy, a main artery of Reggae music history.

The group’s origins date back to an era in which Beatlemania and JFK’s assassination shook the world. In 1963, future Reggae legends Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer formed The Wailers as a Ska singing trio in Kingston, Jamaica. The band would grow to take on many forms, most notably Bob Marley & the Wailers, which came together in the mid-’70s with brothers Aston “Family Man” Barrett and Carlton Barrett on drums and bass, respectively (the rhythm section was also part of Lee “Scratch” Perry’s in-house studio band, The Upsetters).

The Wailers in 1973, with the Aston brothers:


The grouped backed Marley on his journey to becoming a worldwide, cross-genre music icon until his death in 1981. Marley reportedly personally requested that the Wailers continue on after his death, a mission Family Man Barrett has stayed true to ever since.

The post-Marley Wailers were founded by the Barrett brothers and have featured a rotating lineup that has included other original band members, as well as other members of the Barrett family, including current drummer Aston Barrett Jr., Family Man’s son who carries the torch for his late uncle (Carlton was murdered in 1987).

The Wailers’ setlist, logically, features Reggae classic after Reggae classic, giving multiple generations of fans the chance to experience Marley’s magic with some of the roots of Reggae music’s family tree.

8 p.m. Wednesday. $20. Bogart’s, 2621 Vine St., Corryville, bogarts.com

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