The Wailers usher spirit of Bob Marley to Crystal Bay

The Wailers play their iconic reggae songs at the Crystal Bay Casino Crown Room.
Larry Sabo / Tahoe Onstage photos

The Wailers filled the Crystal Bay Casino Crown Room on Friday with the Jamaican reggae music of Bob Marley. Josh Barrett, the lead singer, does an exceptional job at filling the shoes of the reggae legend. There’s a spirit present that seems to guide Barrett and the band in delivering these songs and if you close your eyes and let the music take over, it’s pretty magical.

Longtime Wailer band members are Aston “Familyman” Barrett on bass, Donald Kinsley on lead guitar and Junior “Jazz” Marvin on guitar. The remaining Wailers are members of the famous Barrett family and their gifted descendants, including Aston Barrett Jr. on drums, Owen “Dreadie” Reid on rhythm guitar and Andres Lopez on keyboard.

They opened their set with “Irie-Soul Shakedown” and “Rastaman Vibration.” Listening to their music it like going back to another time and space. The highlights were “Redemption Song,” “Get Up, Stand Up,” “Is This Love” and a crowd favorite, “Jamming.”

Familyman Barrett did an amazing solo that created a funky rastaman feeling in the room. It was definitely a blast from the past to hear some of these songs.

Super fan Steve Holzer said he thought The Wailers put on the best reggae shows he has ever seen. Holzer has been to more than 1,000 concerts and can usually be found in the front row dancing and enjoying every show.

The Wailers closed their show with “Lively Up Yourself” and “Punky Reggae Party / Exodus.”

The message of Bob Marley and The Wailers, which has been around since 1963, always has been to find love and peace with an enduring spirit, despite the challenges we may personally face. When the band played Friday night, you could feel everyone in the room felt this spirit.

— Marcia Schultz

Click the link to see all of Larry Sabo’s photos.

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