Bob Marley, ‘Uprising Live!’ — CD/DVD Review
Since his death in 1981, the legend of Bob Marley has lived on, and only continues to grow. A new archive release of Marley captured in concert in 1980 in Germany is certain to add to that legend.
‘Uprising Live!’ was recorded on June 13, 1980 — less than a year before his untimely passing and despite a hectic few years prior, and some health issues, Marley is no worse for the wear in this fine performance. In fact, at moments, he is shinning brighter than ever. Full of energy and dedication, he leads his band through a set with many highlights.
The set begins with a few songs featuring the I Threes, Marley’s backing vocalists that included his wife Rita, Marcia Griffiths, and Judy Mowatt. (The trio would usually open up concerts before Marley before band took the stage.) Once Bob and the band enter, it’s a constant build of energy and groove — this was one tight band! The guitars of Junior Marvin and Al Anderson circle as the Barrett brothers, Aston and Carlton, make up the rock solid rhythm section.
Many of his signature songs are found here, including ‘No Woman No Cry, ‘Natty Dread,’ ‘Natural Mystic,’ ‘Could This Be Love’ and ‘Redemption Song.’ Marley takes back ‘I Shot The Sheriff’ from Eric Clapton, who topped the U.S. charts with his version in the summer of 1974, delivering the song with extra punch. One of the many highlights here is a particularly moving version of ‘Exodus,’ the title track from his 1977 classic album. The groove these guys get going is incredible.
The ‘Uprising’ tour took place in Europe from the end of May through mid-July in 1980, just as his new album of the same name was being released. The band headed off to America for a short tour that September; this would be Marley’s last tour, as he died of cancer on May 11, 1981.
The concert was filmed for the legendary German music television show, ‘Rockpalast,’ and now makes it’s way to DVD for the first time, with footage fully restored under the supervision of Cedella Marley and Ziggy Marley. The sound, and video, is first rate, making it a must for Marley fans.