Bunny Wailer turns up trebleWednesday, January 22, 2014
By Brian Bonitto
The Grammy Awards are scheduled for January 26 at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles. Five nominees (Beres Hammond, Ziggy Marley, Sizzla, Snoop Lion and Sly and Robbie) are up for Best Reggae Album. Leading up to the big event, the Jamaica Observer presents a daily reflection on the reggae category. Today, we look at Bunny Wailer’s Time Will Tell: A Tribute to Bob Marley.
A FOUNDING member of the Wailing Wailers, Bunny Wailer is one of reggae music’s greats. During the 1990s, he won the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album three times.
His first came in 1991 with Time Will Tell: A Tribute to Bob Marley. The 10-track set, distributed by Shanachie Records, is an ode to Wailer's colleague in the Wailers who died in 1981.
It contains standards such as I Shot the Sheriff, Redemption Song, War and No Woman, No Cry. Black Uhuru (Now), Burning Spear Mek We Dweet, Toots & the Maytals An Hour Live and Andrew Tosh Make Place for the Youth were also contenders for Best Reggae Album in 1991.
Along with Peter Tosh, Marley and Wailer (given name Neville Livingston) were original members of the Wailers, which was formed in Trench Town in late 1963. Marley died in Miami in May 1981 of cancer at age 36, while Tosh was murdered at his St Andrew home in September 1987. He was 42.
Wailer’s other wins came in 1995 and 1997, with Crucial! Roots Classics and A Tribute to Bob Marley’s 50th Anniversary, respectively. Both albums were released by Washington DC independent company, RAS Records.
Like Time Will Tell, the latter contained Marley staples including Three Little Birds, Rastaman Vibration (Positive Vibration), Zimbabwe and Winepress (Babylon System).
Now 66, Wailer recently released a 50-song commemorative set entitled Reincarnated Souls.