Bob Marley - vocals, guitar; Carlton Barrett - drums; Aston Barrett - bass; Marcia Griffiths - backup vocals; Rita Marley - backup vocals; Judy Mowatt - backup vocals; Tyrone Downie - keyboards; Alvin Patterson - percussion; Julian Marvin - lead guitar
Bob Marley and The Wailers were completely jacked and ready to rock by the time they hit the stage for this, the second of two shows recorded in June 1978 for the King Biscuit Flower Hour. A good deal different than the early show, this recording is a better representation of what Marley did at most of his legendary U.S. concerts.
Opening with "Concrete Jungle," he and The Wailers start with a warm slow burn and build up the roster to offer a full platter of Marley songs that have become, by now, true reggae classics. Marley rarely sang the same song in the same way twice and this recording is proof that he remained a true innovator whenever he performed. He glides vocally (with help from his back up vocalists, the I-Threes) over one of the tightest rhythm sections you will ever hear.
Highlights include "Get Up Stand Up;" Marley's own funky composition, "I Shot The Sheriff;" and an extended version on "Exodus" to close out the set. In truth, most of Marley's original compositions have become essential classics in the reggae canon, and for those familiar with the studio catalogue, its breathtaking to hear his unique voice lend a new, unique life to the songs in concert. To Marley, reggae performance, in many ways, embodied a real devotional practice for a Rastafari; for the audience congregated there to witness it, the experience certainly must have inspired awe.
Three years after this recording was made, Marley was dead at 36 from cancer. If you were never able to see a live Bob Marley and The Wailers show, this recording will give you a good idea of what an amazing performer he was in concert. Not to be missed.
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