1950 -1955
Bob Marley meets Bunny Livingston and they become friends.
Autumn: Bob has secretly written 3 songs he entend to present to Clement Seymour “Sir Coxsone” Dodd, whose Muzik City record shop and mobile sound system were the talk of the Trenchtown.
February: Bob plays the song Judge Not to Derrick Morgan who like it enough to introduce him to Leslie Kong. Another stoty goes like this: Urged by Desmond Dekker, Bob visit Federal Studio in Kingston, in search of Coxsone. But he wasn’t there, but Leslie Kong (29-year old Chinese-Jamaican record entrepreneur).
February: Bob record 4 songs for Leslie Kong’s Beverley's Records at Federal Studio: Judge Not, Do You Still love Me?, One Cup Of Coffee and Terror. The last song was not press on vinyl and is said to be lost.
Bob Marley and Bunny Livingston meet Peter McIntosh at a Joe Higgs session.
They Form a band: The Teenagers, then The Wailing Rudeboys the The Wailing Wailers.
Joe Higgs brings the Wailers to producer Clement 'Coxsone' Dodd, who now have 5 labels: World Disc, Coxsone, Muzik City, Studio One and D. Darling (the later named after his mother). Another lable named by Katz: Rolando And Powie (named after Roland Alfonso), but Katz didn’t named World Disc.
The five Wailers that showed up at Coxsone were Bob Marley, Peter McIntosh, Bunny Livingston, Junior Braithwaite and Beverley Kelso.
Studio One, located at 13 Brentford Road, Kingston, Jamaica (formelly the “End” nightclub). Coxone Dodd became something of a surrogate father to Marley, and Bob would actually live at the premises for a while, while also acting as a kind of impromptue A&R man.
The Wailers are paid 3 pounds per week.
Simmer Down is a hit single. It hit No.1.
The last session with Junior Braithwaite was on August 28. He migrated to the USA the following year.
The Wailers have 5 songs in the top-ten list of the island.
Beverley Kelso left the Wailing Wailers in October 1965. She joined the band the night before their first recording session, in July 1964.
Cherry Green rehearsed with The Wailing Wailers for a couple of years before they made their first session for Coxsone. According to the book The Definitive Discography, she played only on the songs What's New Pussycat (August 1965) and Let The Lord Be seen In You (October 1965).
Bob Marley met Alpharita Anderson (born in Cuba) when she was 18. He was 19. Member of The Soulettes. One day, Rita and her friends stopped the group and performed an impromptu song – Bob was immediately won over. He invited them to sing backing vocals on some tracks they were recording and the pair soon became lovers.
Rita Anderson (aka: Rita Marley) made her first harmony vocals for a Wailers song on Where Is My Mother, in October 1965. Marlene Gifford and Constantine Walker will also sing harmony on several tracks.
On February 10, Bob Marley get wed to Rita Anderson (Alpharita Consticia Anderson). At the wedding, she is already pregnant of Cadella, and she is the adoptive mother of Sharon, the daughter of her cousin.
On February 11, Bob leave Jamaica and go stay with his mother in Philadelpia (USA), where she got married again with an American named Booker.
During Bob Marley's nine months absence, The Wailers are still recording material for Coxsone. He will be replaced by Constantine 'Vision' Walker, signer in The Soulettes and Rita’s cousin.
While staying in the United States, Bob Marley was hired as lab asistant for DuPont Chemichal Company with the name of Donald Marley. He also worked for a few month in a Chrysler cars assembly line, then in the night shift in a warehouse. Moreover, at the same time he did extra work part-time as parking watchman, and he did dishwasher in a restaurant. (Roger Steffens) NOTE: I think that one of his job was in Wilmington Delaware.
Haile Selassie visit Jamaica in April. This will have a huge impact on many rastafarians.
In August, The Wailers made their last recording session for Coxsone.
The song Bend Down Low was written in the USA.
In October, Bob Marley comes back to Jamaica, and found the WAIL’N SOUL’M label with the money he aerned in the USA. The store is located at 18a, Greenwhich Park Road, Kingston 5, in Trenchtown.
Freedom Time is the first single on the label.
Bob Marley starts to be interested in the Rastafarian faith and becomes vegetarian. Mortimer Planno will become The Wailers spiritual teatcher.
JAMAICAN HISTORY: The song 007 (Shanky Town) by Desmond Dekker is a big hit in Europe. It becomes a classic rock steady song.
Bob Marley distribute the records by bicycle. The sound systems don’t play The Wailers records.
After a really hot summer in Jamaica, the beat of Ska, the popular music on the island, slows down and become Rock Steady.
Appart maybe for the song Hypocrites which was a minor hit, it's a bad year for The Wailers, nothing really happens for them. The label Wail’N Soul’M ends up to be a fiasco.
Bob Marley returns to Nine Miles, and become a cultivator. He will also sell a bit of ganja. Peter Tosh stays in Kingston to persue a solo career.
In July 1967, Bunny Wailer (aka: Bunny Livingston) is arrested and goes to jail at General Penitentiary, in Kingston for a false accusation for ganja possession. Rita will replace Bunny for the singing, up until he gets out of jail in September of 1968.
JAMAICAN HISTORY: The vocals trio that really mark that year: The Heptones, The Techniques, Clarendonians, Silvertones, Melodians, Ethiopians, Gaylads, Paragons. Solo artists: Slim Smith, Delroy Wilson, Alton Ellis & The Flames, Desmond Dekker & The Aces.
In January, Neville Willough (TV and radio animator) organise a meeting between Bob Marley and producer Danny Sims during a nyabinghi. The Wailers sing an exclusive contract with Sims for recording & distribution. Peter, Bob & Rita will then meet Johnny Nash (a texan signer).
In February, The Wailers record at Dynamic Sound Studio, the best studio on the island. Johnny Nash is currently in the studio recording his album Hold Me Tight. Peter, Rita & Bob will record with all of the american musicians that Nash brought with him on the island (those musicians are the studio musicians for Aretha Franklin & the label Atlantic). Once finish, the songs will be sent to New York where Arthur Jenkins, the engenier, will lay down some more tracks: guitars, percussions & organ (soul style), so the songs can apeal to a more international audience.
Only one 7-inch single will be issued from this recording sessions: Bend Down Low/ Mellow Mood, but it will have no commercial success. The jamaican single will be issued on the WIRL label (West Indies Recording Limited), a label that is controled by future Jamaican Prime Minister Edward Seaga.
The Wailers practice their songs a little studio name The Kitchen, in Trench Town
29 studio songs will be recorded for Danny Sims, but only two were released (Bend Down Low and Mellow Mood). The rest of the songs will remains in the vault until the eighties and the nineties. Apart from these studio songs, several demos will be recorded.
Peter Tosh get beats up by the police during a riot. He will go briefly in prison for his “milaitantisme” acts regarding the Walter Rodney riot. He was know for wearing the “Soul Comb”, a wooden comb that is stick in the afro air in sign of diffidence. He will also be jailed for demonstrated against the racist government of Ian Smith in Rhodesia.
September 1968: Bunny Wailer gets out of jail.
JAMAICAN HISTORY: The musical style rock steady becomes reggae in 1968. The song Israelites, by Desmond Dekker, is one of the first reggae song to be written. It topped the charts in England and in USA.
The Wailers record more songs for Danny Sims. There will also be some self-produced material and four songs produced by Ted Pouder.
The “versions”, the instrumental B-side of the 7-inch singles, becomes very popular on the island
In May 1970, The Wailers will record ten songs for producer Leslie Kong. This songs will be issued only in August 1971, on an album falsly entitled The Best Of The Wailers.
In summer 1970 he started Tuff Gong label and store (located at 127 King Street, corner of Beeston Street). Consequenly there are Wail'N Soul'M singles dated 1970 and also Tuff Gong singles dated 1970. It was to be The Wailers home up until Bob Marley moved to 56 Hope Road.
Peter Tosh record several solo songs for producer Bunny Lee.
In August 1970, The Wailers start their collaboration with Producer Lee Perry.
Peter Tosh goes out with Cecile Campbell, member of the new lineup for The Soulettes. The group was formed in 1965 with Rita Marley, Constantine “Vision” Walker and Marlene “Precious” Gifford. The group was re-formed around 1970 with a new line-up: Rita Marley, Hortense Lewis and Cecile Cambell.
JAMAICAN HISTORY: It was producer King Tubby who was the first to record the voice of his DJ on the dub version of the reggae hits. Instant success on the Jamaican dancehall. U Roy was the first DJ and the first rasta to become famous. Fast recognise the father of DJ/Rap music: “Daddy” U Roy, also known as “The Originator”.
In March 1971, The Wailers put an end to their collaboration with producer Lee Perry. Carlton and Aston Barrett, the rhythm section of Lee Perry studio band The Upsetters, leave the Perry and become offical members of The Wailers.
Allan “Skill” Cole, a Jamaican Football player, one of Bob Marley’s closest friends, becomes the manager of The Wailers, and the 4th associate. Starting in 1971, he will be pressing some of the 7-inches in the New York office of Tuff Gong.
In May, Bob Marley goes to Stockholm (Sweden), to compose music for the movie North Scene (Love Is Not A Game). But must have been back to Jamaica in July, as his son Stephen was born nime months later.
Peter Tosh records several solo songs with producer Joe Gibbs. Among them: Arise Blackman, Her Comes The Judge plus new versions of Maga Dog and Them A Fi Get A Beaten.
In August 1971, Leslie Kong release the album The Best Of The Wailers, the following week, the producer dies of an heart attack.
Bob Marley flew back to Stockholm, The musical group that he was working with moved to London in November 1971, but Bob stayed in Sweden.
Johnny Lover, an employe that sells records at the Tuff Gong store (on 7th street), make 2 DJ versions of their songs: Don’t Rock My Boat and Sun Is Shining.
Peter Tosh found his own Intel-Diplo label.
In January, Bob Marley leaves Sweden and join the Nash group in London.
In April, Bob Marley record Reggae On Broadway, Oh Lord Got To Get There, Dance Do The Reggae and I’m Hurting Inside with Johnny Nash band.
Bunny Wailer found his own label Solomonic, on which he star releasing a his singles. In 1972, the following singles will be issued: Searching For Love, Life Line, Bide Up, Bide, Arabs Oil Weapon and Pass It On.
In August, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, Aston Barrett and Carlton Barrett flew to London to promote the single Reggae On Broadway (issued on CBS). They did small concerts but the single didn’t worked.
In October, Bob Marley went to meet Chris Blackwell in his London office. Blackwell, a native Jamaican producer, interest in signing The Wailers, purchase back Danny Sims 1968 recording and distributing deal. After one short show supporting Johnny Nash, The Wailers flew back to Jamaica where they record their first Island Records album: the classic Catch A Fire.
In November, the tapes are brought back to London, where studio musicians record additional instruments. John “Rabbit” Bundrick recalls adding his keyboard overdubs on the Catch A Fire LP, in London, on November 4th.
Information was taken from various books, CD sleeves and articles that I read.