Entertainment Music: Bunny Wailer, reggae legend and founder of the Wailers, died at age 73
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Bunny Wailer participated with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh in democratizing reggaeRASTAFARI - Bunny Wailer participated with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh in democratizing reggae
It's the end of an era for the. Jamaican singer and percussionist Bunny Wailer, legend of this musical movement, died Tuesday at the age of 73 at Andrew’s Memorial Hospital in Kingston in .
The news was announced by Jamaican Culture Minister Olivia Grange. She did not specify the cause of death of this founding member of The Wailers withand Peter Tosh. Real name Neville Livingston, the musician suffered a first stroke in 2018, followed by a second in July 2020. He was the last survivor of the historic trio.
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Born in 1947 in Nine Mile, north Jamaica, Bunny Wailer met Bob Marley there as a child. Later, his father will become the companion of Bob Marley's mother. They will move to Trench Town, a district of Kingston, where they will be influenced by their meeting with Joe Higgs, considered by many to be the "father of reggae", who will encourage them to form a first trio with Peter Tosh.Bob Marley voluntarily placed in front of
The group will release their first album in 1965, The Wailing Wailers. It marks the emergence of a sound, at an evil pace, influenced by American music, especially R & B, but also by Jamaican culture.
A charismatic character, always wearing a beard and hat, a follower of the principles of the Rastafarian religious movement, Bunny Wailer plays a decisive role in the development of this musical identity. In an interview in 2013, the musician explained that he voluntarily stepped back when forming the Wailers. "All the members of the group had the qualities to be a leader," he said. “But we needed a sound so that when you were listening to the band you would know it was the Wailers. And with Bob in front, we had that sound ”.
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The contribution of Island Records
The Wailers were successful from their beginnings, with tracks like One Love, still sounding ska, a musical genre that was the precursor of reggae. The track was re-recorded for Bob Marley's album Exodus in 1977 and went on to become a worldwide hit. After their first, the Wailers will release several more albums before starting their collaboration with producer Chris Blackwell. The founder of the Island Records label will significantly change the sound of the group, to give it a more electric sound that will appeal to a more international audience.
Bunny Wailer will be Catch a Fire and Burnin 'albums, which will turn reggae into a major musical movement. But he will then leave the group, as will Peter Tosh, tired of the role of Bob Marley's stooge in which he felt locked up. He then launched his solo career with the album Blackheart Man, considered today as a classic of the genre. During the 1990s, he received three Grammy Awards, including two for Reggae Album of the Year.
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