On December 6, 1979 Hoch Auditorium hosts Bob Marley & The Wailers as part of their Survival Tour. The Survival Tour is organized to support the album Survival by Bob Marley & The Wailers.
“KU students and a packed house danced and swayed to the reggae beats, with the smell of marijuana swirling throughout the hall after Bob was introduced in a deep, thickly Jamaican-accented admonition, “Put out your cigarettes and light up your spliffs… It’s gonna be a Rasta night in Kansas, man.”
The tour starts in Boston in late October 1979, and ends in Libreville, Gabon, on January 6, 1980. During 1979, which is the International Year of the Child, the band makes appearances at a few benefit concerts for children, as is the case on August 10, 1979, in Jamaica, prior to the Survival Tour, and on December 15, 1979 in Nassau, Bahamas. The tour mainly takes place in the United States, but also includes performances in the Caribbean and in Africa. The Survival Tour is the first and only tour the band includes a horn section, featuring Glen Da Costa on saxophone and David Madden on trumpet.
Most concerts in the United States and in Africa are opened by soul and R&B singer Betty Wright. However, opening this show is an all-white reggae band from Kansas City, Missouri. The Blue Riddim Band won a spot opening for Bob Marley Hoch at Auditorium in Lawrence tonight. Incidentally, they are best known for being the first all-white band nominated for a Grammy in the reggae category. In 1986 they lose the Grammy to Jimmy Cliff, who wins for his Cliff Hanger album. Other nominees include Burning Spear, Judy Mowatt and the Melody Makers featuring Ziggy Marley.
Kansas University History Professor Bill Tuttle is there for the performance. He recently shared his experience in the LJWorld, a Lawrence, Kansas online journal.
Click HERE to read his first-hand account of the performance.
I recently spoke to Professor Tuttle through email about his experience and this is what he had to say:
“I’ve attended a lot of concerts over the years, but nothing has ever moved me as much — especially spiritually — as the 1979 Bob Marley and the Wailers show at KU. There was a great deal of herb being shared in Hoch Auditorium, and I was able to inch my way down to the front, where I had a wonderful view of Marley and the I-Three.
By the way, the Blue Riddim Band was also fabulous!”
I have included a review of the show published in the Lawrence Journal on December 9, 1979.
Bob Marley and the Wailers
Live at the Hoch Auditorium
December 6, 1979
01. Positive Vibration [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (6:06)
02. Wake Up And Live [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (5:15)
03. Them Belly Full [But We Hungry] [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (3:39)
04. I Shot The Sheriff [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (4:40)
05. Concrete Jungle [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (5:01)
06. Running Away + Crazy Baldhead [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (7:19)
07. The Heathen [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (5:05)
08. Ambush In The Night [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (3:48)
09. War + No More Trouble [Incomplete] [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (4:40)
10. One Drop [Incomplete] [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (3:13)
11. Exodus [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (8:55)
12. No Woman, No Cry [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (6:08)
13. Lively Up Yourself [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (5:18)
14. Natty Dread [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (5:07)
15. Is This Love [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (3:23)
16. Jamming [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (3:30)
17. Get Up, Stand Up [Live At The Hoch Auditorium] (7:00)
© D. Schenk
© D. Schenk
© D. Schenk
© D. Schenk
Many thanks to my good friend Emmanuel Parata for sharing the photographs from the show. Please visit his website at www.bobmarleyarchive.com.
Also, credit is due to my friend and owner of www.bobmarleymagazine.com Marco Virgona for providing the interview with Professor Bill Tuttle of Kansas University.
I was there. Best concert I ever saw. I remember the sound was like a battleship sailing through the hall. Huge and powerful. Three of everything: guitarists, horn players, drummers, I-Threes.
Great description of his sound! Thanks for commenting..Mike
The entire band was in such perfect unison, I felt like I was floating upon each note. The top of my head opened up and I became one with the music and the universe. Incredible experience. Thank you Bob and band.