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London, England
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Bands Played With

  • Island-Records-Speakeasy-Letter
About This Show
Band Lineup
  • Bob Marley, vocals, rhythm guitar
  • Peter Tosh, vocals, lead guitar
  • Bunny Wailer, vocals, percussion
  • Aston Barrett, bass
  • Carlton Barrett, drums
  • Earl 'Wya' Lindo, keyboards

The Wailers’ four night run at London’s Speakeasy club was a turning point for the band.  As bassist Aston “Family Man” Barrett explains:

“There came a point where we just knew how we were going to set it and that come when we were playing the Speakeasy.  The Speakeasy was the most prestigious club in London at the time and that was our breaking point.  That was when we first began to get attention from the media because they were all there that night just waiting to see what we could do.”

Bob Marley meets 14-year old aspiring photographer Dennis Morris during the sound check for one of these shows.  Morris will eventually capture some of the most memorable inages of Marley.  Like the one here, Morris’ first photo of Bob Marley, which was captured during the Wailers’ performance at the Speakeasy.

Included in the slideshow is a letter from Island Records to Speakeasy owner Laurie O’Leary and the Wailers’ contract with the venue.

See below for an article by Richard Williams titled “Bob Marley: The First Genius of Reggae?”, which was published in Melody Maker on 24 February 1973.  Williams ends the article by saying “Marley is potentially a giant figure.” If he only knew…