FlutemanJohn jammin LIVE with the WAILERS
If you love Bob Marley and the Wailers, check this out

CLICK HERE and you will see and hear flutemanjohn jamming LIVE on stage with BOB MARLEY's legendary band, THE WAILERS, including my friend and sponsor, the incredible Al Anderson, Bob's original lead guitar player, and featuring the Architect of Reggae Music, Aston "Familyman" Barret, Bob Marley's original bass player and musical director. ONE LOVE, ONE HEART, LETS GET TOGETHER AND FEEL ALL RIGHT !!

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Al Anderson and Flutemanjohn at Camp Zoe August 2008

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Thank You Wailers!

You are listening to audio from a very special show, the original Wailers LIVE (with flutemanjohn sitting in live with the original horn section all night) at Engine Room, Houston, September 17, 2004. Recording starts in the middle of the first jam of the night, halfway through the flute solo, and there are FIVE ORIGINAL WAILERS playing on stage live, including bass guitar, lead guitar, keys, and horns. These giants all recorded and toured live with Bob Marley for years. Familyman on bass, Junior on guitar, both epic Wailers the days of the Tuff Gong. This is as real as it gets in Millennium 2, Rasta ! Parts of the live stage show were filmed by A&E for a special on Bob Marley. Peace and Love, flutemanjohn

Note from flutemanjohn: What folows is organized with the most recent events first, then progressively older reports, over the ten year period I have had the unique privilege to tour and play and record with the Wailers, so dig deep to find the roots, yah man. Also, please use the navigation bars near the bottom of the page, to see the whole story. A chronology of my live dates with The Wailers is on the last page. This is the history of  how BOB MARLEY AND THE WAILERS' luckiest fan in the world came to meet and play with the band, year after year, becoming in time an old friend of the band, and how that local Houston reggae-band amateur flute jammer is actually nothing more than an enthusiastic, loving, respectful, grateful, amazed, awed, faithful, and truly humble fan.

DATELINE HOUSTON TEXAS -- 4/6/2009

"flutemanjohn logs live show #22 with THE WAILERS"

Thanks to Al Anderson, Bob Marley's original lead guitar player, last night was the sweetest musical adventure of my life, appearing at Warehouse Live, Houston, with "The Original Wailers". Al Anderson's incredible Original Wailers band has taken Bob Marley's music to higher heights. With Junior Marvin (also Bob's original lead player) on lead guitar and lead vocals, Erica Newell (of Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers fame, like ten albums and multiple Grammy Awards), and the awesome Christian Cowlin on organ and keys, my two young sons (Ryan, 17, drums, and Lucas, 15, bass guitar, fretless bass, and stand-up bass viol) got to share in the full experience, that they have already told me they will never forget. In the small venue, my two boys were on the edge of the stage, arms length from Al Andserson, the entire night. Two original Wailers playing lead guitar, singing lead vocals, and an original Melody Maker singer on the tour was legendary, but the new bass player is spice on the Jamaican jerk chicken. This cat, Rohan Reed, is the smoothest jazziest Jamaican bassist, ever, period. Fire and Thunder on a six-tring bass. Unbelievable. Rohan studied with the great Jamaican jazz/reggae guitarist Ernest Ranglin, and other notable musical legends. Rohan brought Roots Rock Reggae to a higher jazz/funk level, while still expertly holding down the bottom end, in the tradition of the Barrett Brothers. My two sons, drum and bass (just like the Barrett Brothers) got to see their flutemandad on stage with the greatest reggae band ever to wind up a waist, rock your soul, or expand your mind, and honor the mystical legend of Bob Marley and the Wailers. The hundreds of fans in the intimate venue were wild about the "new" band, because of the superior musicianship, the ecstatic stage vibe, and the eternal music of Bob Marley and the Wailers. The mixture was intoxicating. It was something to behold, and even more unbelievable to be a part of history last night, when Al Anderson once again offered me his vocal mike to play my flute along with the band, to give to the music, and to join in the band. In those rare moments, 22 times, in more than ten cities, over this entire decade, I feel humble respect and gratitude, to be walking among giants, trodding with legends, and treated as an old friend, on a continual basis. Thank you Wailers. I am positive that the Natural Mystic himself approves this message, this band, and the upholding of the burning fire of the revolution of the mind, begun by the timeless works of Bob Marley, and carried forth by the Wailers, through the millennium, and far beyond. Thank you, Bob, Al, Junior, Wya, Carlton, Familyman, Tyrone, Peter, Bunny, Glen, Vin, Rita, Marcia, Judy, and all the Original Wailers, most of whom I have had the honor to meet, befriend, and jam live on stage with, many times over the last decade. It seems like only an instant. "Children, Life is So Sweet." Peace and I-tinual One Love, flutemanjohn

 

DATELINE HOUSTON TEXAS -- 4/20/2008

"flutemanjohn logs live shows #19, #20, and #21 with THE WAILERS"

Bob Marley, nearing the end of his time in this plane of existence, asked the band to stay together. Now nearly 30 years later, the Wailers are still going strong, on their non-stop world-wide tour. Aston Familyman Barrett (bass guitar), Junior Marvin (lead guitar), Doctor Keith Sterling (keys), Chico Chin (trumpet), are the original players of instruments that swung through Texas this month on the nonstop worldwide tour. They, and the other Wailers, very generously let me play the Texas shows with them. We played Austin, Ft.Worth, and Houston. They were even nice enough to let my 14 year old son Lucas (bass guitar) stand up next to me (right between me and "Fams") and bang a cowbell at the Houston International Festival, so now there are two "Wailers" in the family. It was also nice to see some new faces in the band, and to again greet Roger Steffans who introduced the band. Give Humble Thanks and Praises, everytime, and Humble Respect to Aston Familyman Barrett, The Architect of Reggae Music, for once again letting this humble fan join in the inner circle of musicians keeping alive the burning fire of the revolution and the word sound and power of Bob Marley and the Barrett Brothers eternal music. Jah Truly Liveth. flutemanjohn, Houston Texas, April 2008 (I hope to post some pictures of the Texas Tour in the next few days.)

Backstage at Red Rocks Amphitheater
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Wailers backstage after jammin Red Rocks Reggae on the Rocks August 2003

flutemanjohn's SITE NAVIGATION:   Please use the site navigation links at the very bottom of each page.

DATELINE HOUSTON TEXAS -- August 8, 2007

"flutemanjohn logs live show #18 with THE WAILERS"

Greetings, and Humble Thanks, once again, to The Wailers. True to their eight years of incredible generosity to me, The Wailers invited me to play with them live at Big Summer Classic at Camp Zoe in Missouri, my home state. It was a sublime reunion, as the Wailers rolled in to the four-day festival, and we were all up on stage in a few minutes. There was just barely time for Al Anderson (Bob Marley's original lead guitar player) to invite me to join them. He said, "Fluteman! Are you coming up tonight?" and I did, sitting in on three songs in the set. Young Lion, a veteran Wailer, sang lead, Al Anderson played lead guitar, and of course the leader of the Wailers, Aston "Familyman" Barrett played bass. Keith Sterling (whose brother Lester founded the Skatellites) and Christian Cowlen played keys, Chico on trumpet, Drummie Zebb was back on trap set drums rippin up dem riddim, RasMel on guitar, and two little birds from Jamaica on sweet backing vocals. As usual, the Wailers fielded no less than ten musicians in the big stage show. I was Wailer Number Eleven that day, and it made me feel Irie, to be once again trodding among the giants of the genre of reggae, with me good friends in the band again, and with 10,000 new friends, the Camp Zoe campers. I went to camp there as a pre-teen (forty years ago!), and it was very cool to return to the beautiful camp, with its 300 acres of woods, hills, cliffs, caves, and spring creeks, camp for a week, dig the excellent musical line up, String Cheese, Yonder Mountain, Drew Emmitt, the Schwag, Los Lobos, and many more. (Thanks to Zoe Radio for the broadcast and recording of the bands.) (Also, please see Camp Zoe's website www.campzoe.com) Of course for me the main event was Bob Marley's mighty mighty band, The Wailers. After eight years, in seven cities in four states, this was the 18th time I was lucky enough to play live onstage with the original Wailers. Humble gratitude for their friendship. Simply put, it does not get any better, and The Wailers have demonstrated over and over, above all, they are me good friends. Thanks for their trust, love, and generosity. There is no end to a good thing. Rasatafar-I Know.

 

DATELINE HOUSTON TEXAS -- February 12, 2007

Greetings in Jah Name. Give Thanks and Praises. I have just returned from a tour with the Wailers. 4 cities in 4 days. Austin, Dallas, Lafayette, and New Orleans, February 8-11, 2007. It was an Irie time, and a high point in my life, once again to play with Bob Marly's legendary band, the Wailers. Joining them in Austin, I played flute with the horn section that night, and every night. High points of the tour: Al Anderson (Bob Marley's lead guitar) and Aston Familyman Barrett (Bob Marley's musical director and bass guitar) were together on the tour, bringing the magic of the Roots Reggae musicians to the stage; Cha Cha from Congo Africa had returned as drummer; and veteran  Wailers Nambo and Chico were back on horns. Keith Sterling and Christian on keyboards, Drummie Zebb on percussion, and Ras Mel on guitar. Original Wailers on stage who had played with Bob Marley included Familyman Barrett, Al Anderson, and Keith Sterling. (Some of the other veteran Wailers, Jamaicans and Rastas, may have also played with Bob in the studio or on the road.) I had not been on stage with veteran trombonist Nambo since the very first time in the early weeks of 2000, when Al Anderson had called me up on stage to sit in with the Wailers for the very first time, Al pointed me back to the horn section, and Nambo rotated his mike to me and said "Use my mike, mon, my trombone is so loud I don't need it". When I re-uned with Nambo this week, after all this time (7 years), I told him the story and he laughed out loud, saying he remembered too. The vocal section was composed of three incredible singers. Two little birds on backing vocals, the French Connection, included an old stage-mate Cali, a sweet beautiful Wailers veteran from Cote d'Ivoire, Africa. Fronting the band was Yvad, a reggae singer/songwriter "discovered" by Cidella Marley (Bob's oldest daughter) of the Melody Makers. Yvad had played concerts with Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers, and is now the lead singer for the Wailers. And sitting in as the 13th Wailer on this leg of the tour was flutemanjoh the fried piper. It was my 14th through 17th appearances with the Wailers since the beginning of 2000. Once again, the Wailers proved to me their honest and open love and generosity. The examples on this trip alone were myriad. My favorite one; I parked for the show in Lafayette behind the venue, and walked to the back stage enterance, and there was Familyman, leader of the Wailers and Bob Marley's legendary musical director, saying "Fluteman wee-yah your car?" and I said parked right down the street, and he said "No, you put it here, mon! I save this place for you." He had put up four orange cones in the wet muddy gravel and cold rain, and wrapped orange tape to string them together, purely out of humble love and concern for the lowliest sit-in member of the band, flutemanjohn. (needless to say I put my car there immediately.) I am telling you, playing with the Wailers is not just the music, it is the learing of how to love and be love, the One Love, the Rastafarian Vibe, the friendship, and the true nature of trust. Another high point was on the last night of the 4-night run. We were at the House of Blues in New Orleans. I was playing with the horns, and my Dreadlock Rasta Co-Pilot on the road, Alafia, leader of Houston's oldest and best reggae band D.R.U.M., was hand-drumming with the Wailers, jammin like fire on his djembe, on the finale Bob Marley and the Wailers' song "Exodus", when Cali recognized the African drum beat Alafia was banging out, and she went into a wild trance-dance, associated with the specific African beat. She was fully in the spirit, possessed by the ancestors, and knocking over a mike and boom stand in her incredible wild and expressive dance did not slow her down a bit. In fact, all the Wailers responded: picking up the tempo and the fire of the music, bring the crowd to a higher level. The crowd loved it. And of course they loved the Wailers, and everyone in the room knew and loved Familyman on bass guitar and Al Anderson on lead guitar, and responded joyously to their inspired and driving guitar playing on Bob Marley's eternal songs of Freedom and Unity. I now have appeared with the Wailers in 17 stage shows since 2000 began, including sharing the stage with nearly all the original Wailers over the last seven years: Al Anderson, Aston "Familyman" Barrett, Earl "Wya" Lindo, Junior Marvin, Keith Sterling,  Marcia Griffiths of the I-Three (Bob's backing vocal group which included his wife Rita Marley), and all the original Jamaican horn players, Vin Gordon (trombone), Glenn Dacosta (sax), Nambo (bone), Chico (trumpet), Everton (sax), and I am still merely the luckiest Bob Marley and the Wailers fan in the known Universe, and I am still learning from them, about music, about love, and about life, every time. Jah Know.

 

DATELINE HOUSTON TEXAS -- September 1, 2006

Jah Rastafar-I is truly great. Tonight, I just got home from my 13th live stage show with the legendary Wailers, Bob Marley’s legendary Reggae band. It was wonderful to see Al Anderson back with the Wailers on lead guitar, Junior Marvin on lead vocals and guitar, and of course Aston Familyman Barrett on bass guitar. It would not be the Wailers without Fams. Keith Sterling on lead keyboards - all these guys toured and recorded extensively with Bob Marley, and they are truly the roots musicians and founding fathers of the entire Reggae genre. We rocked the house hard at Houston’s largest music venue, Cynthia Wood Mitchell Pavilion, better known as “The Woodlands”. It was outdoors at night, and the set was killer, jammin on all Bob’s classic songs: you know every one we played…Get Up Stand Up, Who the Cap Fits, One Love, Three Little Birds, Bend Down Low, Redemption Song…all the classic tunes. (I played flute tonight on the last four songs mentioned. When Al called for me, and motioned me up to his mike to start jamming on flute, and I fully “got into the act”, my eye caught a glimpse of the “Big Screen” next to the stage, and there was some 25-foot-tall weirdo with a bandana, playing the silver flute, jumping around on the screen, twirling the flute like a baton, and mad-dancing to the Reggae Riddim, its startled me for a sec, then I realized,  it was me. Weird. After the show Al Anderson came up to me and said “Good job, Fluteman, you have really good pitch,” and I told him: “Coming from you that really means something”. Al Anderson was the first to invite me to play live with the Wailers in my first show with them, nearly seven years ago.) Just as in the days of Bob Marley, with his Songs of Freedom, the Wailers continue their non-stop 35-year-long world tour, bringing the music to the blossoming generations, giving Thanks and Praises for Bob’s music and message. It will truly live forever, as Bob said. And the spirit and the message were there tonight, in full force. This is the “Unity Tour” with 311 and Pepper…quite a show. It’s strengthening to see the youth of the nation take up the cause of Unity, Irie Vibrations, and Bob Marley’s message of peace, love, freedom, justice, and equality… and they loved the show, and we loved them. They was swingin, swayin, digging every minute of music. (My fifteen-year-old son, the drummer, knows a lot of kids in the audience tonight, so he should have some serious bragging rights when he goes back to school Tuesday.) Sad for me tonight, the Wailer’s had no horn section. Vin Gordon is playing trombone for the Skatellites (the inventors of Ska Music and Bob’s first studio band in Jamaica, when he was a teenager), and Glen Dacosta is playing sax at historic venues, all over the island. So tonight flutemanjohn was the horn section. The last note dropped, the Bic lighters raised by the crowd melted upward into the starry night, we had a long time backstage to reminisce, with Fams, Drummie Zebb, Junior, Keith, Al… all the wonderful giants of the genre, who continue their seven year run of immaculate generosity and hospitality to me, playfully allowing me to share the stage with them, one more time. It is nice being a Wailer. There is no end to a good thing…Rastafar-I Know.

 

If anyone has the video or the audio (The Wailers, Woodlands, Houston Sept. 1, 2006), please email me at home at flutemanjohn@earthlink.net and I will trade you some vintage Bob Marley and Wailers shows. One Love, flutemanjohn, the fried piper.

WEBSITE: www.home.earthlink.net/~flutemanjohn 

 

Just as a little extra, here is the note I sent to the world's most noted Reggae Archivist, Ras Roger Steffens, after the Woodlands shows:

Ras Roger, this is flutemanjohn. It was an excellent privilege to finally meet you in Houston this past summer, backstage at the Marley/Skatellites show. Two days ago (Sept 1 2006) I played flute live with our good friends the Wailers, on stage at Houston's largest music venue, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, Woodlands Texas (also know as "The Woodlands Amphitheater"). It was a blast. We rocked 'em hard, cause Al Anderson was back with the band, for the "Unity Tour" with 311 and Pepper. Al has been my sponsor with the Wailers for seven years, so it was great to see him, and do a good job for him and the people. Familyman, Junior Marvin, and Keith Sterling were also on stage, as well as other veterans, Like Zebb, Christian, and the girls. It was also nice to have an original Wailer (Junior) fronting the band. It just always seems more real. The review is on my website at www.home.earthlink.net/~flutemanjohn The Wailers' open-ness and generosity to me always floors me. Raspect. I played the entire last half of the show, and it was great to sit and reminisce with the rootsmen afterwards. Fams had some interesting ideas about how many of the early melodic themes in Bob's music and early Reggae came from the big screen, like "Exodus" and "Sound of Music". He was singing the melodies and showing how they matched the movie themes. (Not to mention the horse opera connection to Reggae music.) Interesting stuff. Fams also waxed poetic about the Bic lighters, held aloft by the fans, blending upward into the starry night past the top rim of the amphitheater, that clear night. He was as jovial as always, considering the chapter in history which has just closed on him. Anyway, I have a favor to ask. If you locate the audio or video from the Woodlands Wailers' show, I would dearly love to get a copy someday. I know I don't have much to offer by way of trade (coals to Newcastle!), but I can tell you that any copies would also go direct to the Wailers from me, as I have given them literally hundreds of discs in the last seven years. Thank you very much, and please keep up your crucial, world-class work. Best Regards, and Raspect to the I-dren, flutemanjohn, the fried piper, millennium wailer -- Jah Know (PS I have a Bunny Wailer shows you "might" want, Red Rocks, Colorado, June 2000, soundboard, 2CDs. Just let me know.)

Ras RoJah's immediate response: Hail Up FMJ, Great to hear from you, and glad we met up fleshically finally. Thanks for the full report. If I find a copy of the show, I'll let you know immediately, but I'll need your snail-mail address. One Heart, Ras RoJah RAW H1

(N.B. Give Thanks and Praises to Jah Rastafar-I, the Lion of Judah, much love fmj)

 

FLUTEMAN JOHN, the Fried Piper, live onstage with Bob Marley's mighty band, the WAILERS, Friday January 29, 2001, at Fitzgerald's in Houston Texas. Give Thanks and Praises to Earth Rightful Ruler, JAH RASTAFARI . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
 
September 2004 update. Two more shows with the legendary Wailers this month, for an even dozen. I have now played live with the Wailers 12 times since the millennium began. I still feel like its a dream. The Wailers generosity to me over the past five years has been impeccable, and I give humble thanks for it, and thanks to Jah Rastafar-I for life.
 
This year it started Friday September 17 2004, when Drummy Zeb and Keith Sterling showed up at the Engine Room for sound check, and ended up 24 hours later, with the Wailers and me taking the stage at the Austin City Limits Festival, under the blazing sun, before a brightly colored sea of people, that seemed to go on forever. There were 75,000 through the gate that day, and most of them were watching the five o'clock Wailers set . . .
 
This two-night run with the Wailers started at the Engine Room in Downtown Houston. After a serious talk with Drummy about  his new release with Bob Dylan and various reggae greats, called "It Is Rolling Bob", a reggae tribute to Bob Dylan, Jomo and I chatted with our old friends, the band and the road crew. My wonderful wife Jane came down for the show that night, and all my dreadlock friends were there in force. The venue was ram packed, and came alive when the curtains parted and the Wailers took the stage by storm. Aston Familyman Barrett on bass guitar, Junior Marvin on lead guitar, Keith Sterling on keys, Drummy Zeb on drums, and RasMel on lead guitar, formed the basic band. The horns were none other that Glenn DaCosta on sax and Arnold Brackenridge on trumpet, and a very irie flutemanjohn on flute. Each horn took a solo in turn, on the first song, and then they all looked at me as the third horn in line, and so I just started in a-wailin. I got a very warm reception from all my friends in the Houston audience, and my eleventh show with the Wailers was well begun. After a couple cool instrumentals, the singers came out: Gary Nesta Pine, the dynamic Wailers lead singer, and the sweet vocalist JoAnne, but the best surprise for us rootical fans was Erica Newel, from Ziggy Marley and the Melody makers. For the last ten years or so, Erica was the only non-Marley vocalist in the Melody Makers, which included Ziggy, Steven, Sharon, and Cedella, all children of the Tuff Gong, Bob Marley. Being on stage with Erica, and harmonizing my flute with her beautiful voice, on the melody lines of "No Woman No Cry", was a natural thrill for me. Thank you from the heart, to Erica and all the Wailers. (Also, the show was filmed by A&E that night, and will be part of an upcoming documentary on Bob Marley, to air December 2004 on A&E network. )
 
The next morning I set out alone to Austin, where I met up with some buds to see our good friends New Monsoon's set, then over to the main stage to hook back up with the Wailers. The stage itself was was incredible, mountainous, high and huge, with five cameras including flying booms sending the images to the giant screen on stage right, so that the 50 thousand or so spectators could get right in on the live action on stage. With One Love in our hearts and smiles on our faces, we played through an hour of everyone's favorite Bob Marley songs of freedom. As I faced out to the crowd, watching the sun lower behind the mixing board canopy, which looked like an island surrounded by a living ocean of humanity, I felt the two-way exchange of electricity between the crowd and the band, and that other dimension, as the spirit of Bob Marley lifted all our hearts that day. The music and the message are eternal, and the hopefullness and joy that it brings, well, like one Wailer said, there is no end to a good thing . . .
 
 
SEPT. 2003 UPDATE !
My 10th time playing in the big stage show, with Bob Marley's legendary band,  THE WAILERS
 
Wailers and FMJ Live at Red Rocks
Wailers and FMJ Live at Red Rocks
 Message to DJ-RJ & Texas Reggae List:

Just a greeting to let you know the 13th Annual Reggae on the Rocks, Saturday August 23, 2003, at the incredible, natural Red Rocks Amphitheatre, outside Denver, was the reggae event of the year: Israel Vibration, Burning Spear, Jimmy Cliff, and the Wailers. Red Rocks was packed up to the top row, weather was perfect, the vibe was in the air, and nine thousand reggae fans had the experience of a lifetime. Red Rocks has added a big screen, and condensed the two day festival into an afternoon and an evening, two local reggae acts, and the four headliners. It was the tenth time (!) I have joined the Wailers, live in the big stage show, so Red Rocks was very special to me. Five Original Wailers were on stage: Jr. Marvin played guitar and sang lead (the Wailers' regular lead singer, Gary Nesta Pine, was with his wife giving birth); Aston Familyman Barrett played the sweet teasing and commanding bass guitar lines; Earl Wya Lindo bubblin on the B3 organ; Glen DaCosta on sax; and Vin Gorden on trombone: all original rootsmen. I joined the horns on flute again, to make a three piece section. Keith Sterling was featured on keys; Keith played with Bob Marley on stage and in studio, and with Bunny Wailer when he came to Red Rocks Jan 2000, and Keith's brother was an original Skatellite, which was Bob Marley's first studio band. Dummy Zeb on kit, and RasMel Glover on lead and riddim guitar, rounded out the instrumentalists, plus two beautiful young female Jamaican vocalists, and this comprised the current incarnation of the Wailers Band. Me good friend and sponsor Al Anderson was unfortunately not on this leg of the tour, as he had other musical projects brewing. Marcia Griffin has not been on the tour since our first and only time on stage together in February 2000 in Austin (where we harmonized on flute and vocal, on the sweet high slow waterfall solo runs of "No Woman No Cry", and on other songs that night, my first night live with the Wailers). The Wailers Red Rocks set list began with two of Familyman's originals: "Cobra Style" and "Well Pleased", then a full set of Bob Marley's catalogue. Jr. Marvin ended the night with a sweet soul solo acoustic version of "Redemtion Song", with the band coming in power behind him halfway through the song, as in the days of the Tuff Gong. As the Wailers have told me many times "fluteman you are one of us, you are a Wailer", so I got to wail on flute from beginning to end, on songs of my choosing, so I just stepped in for some of my favorites, "Cobra Style", "Well Pleased", "Lively Up Yourself", "Zion Train", "Redepmtion Song", and a few others. The night was fantastic. Then Jimmy Cliff nearly brought down the house with "The Harder They Come, The Harder They Fall", punctuated with two tight drop-splits! Spear was the last act, and Denver really loves him. In the past Spear has played Denver several times a year to sell-out crowds, andas he said to the roar of the crowd Saturday night as he left the stage, "I love you all, and I hope you love me." They do. DJ Postman Roger invited us all back next year, and it was obvious that the vast majority agreed.
DJRJ, top rankin Austin DJ and drummer. Thanks again for all your good work, your friend, flutemanjohn  
 AND  PLEASE ! !
 
PLEASE CHECK OUT ALL THREE PAGES WITH THE LINKS BELOW . . . . PAGES 2 & 3 HAVE PIX & TALES that further chronicle MY ADVENTURES with the LEGENDARY WAILERS in the year 2002!

From L2R Fluteman, Drummy Zeb, Al Anderson original lead guitar, Everton Gale sax, Sterling keys, Gary Nesta Pine lead vocal, Cornel drums, Aston Familyman Barrett original bass guitar, foundation band leader and Bob Marley's musical director, Earl Wya Lindo original reggae bubblin' organ (behind girls), Denise and Kali backup vocals. . . . . . . . ........................................................................ ;) PLEASE USE LINKS BELOW TO SEE PAGES 2 & 3 !!!
LINKS ARE AT VERY BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE ! ! !
 
YES, ME FRIEND, dis a flutemanjohn here in this I-wah is a Summer 2003 update, and a lot of water pass by de bridge. I have now played live in concert with the Wailers NINE TIMES since the millenium started, and I am proud to call them all me good good friends. I met Ziggy Marley again briefly on his Dragonfly Tour last month, and offered him some likkle music and a few likkle ting fi welcome him back to Texas. In February we hang wit Steven Marley, Julian Marley, and Damien "JR Gong" Marley, when they stop by our hotel room fi likkle welcome corn, cali food, den mek we go a show in Austin with all the bredren. Last fall, Vin and Glen, Bob's original horn section, stop by Jomo's gate fi NYABINGHI celebration. The Wailers are touring Europe again, then to Colorado & California. The legend of Bob Marley and the Wailers, with Aston Familyman Barrett, has never ceased from Creation. This is because Bob told the band to keep on playing, twenty years ago, and they are in this I-wah still touring. All thanks and praises to the Almighty-I, and maximum humble RASpect to the original rootsmen, Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh, Aston Familyman Barrett, Carleton Barrett, Earl Wya Lindo, Al Anderson, Junior Marvin, Tyrone Downie, Seeco Patterson, and the sweet Sistahs Rita Marley, Judy Mowat, Marcia Griffith, the Three Little Birds. And the horn Glen DaCosta and Vin Gordon. Many on the list above have been called Home. Many others are good friends of mine. Humble gratitude and RASpect to the generosity and genius of the Wailers. Long Live the spirit and the message and the music of Bob Marley. Rasta Far I, Selassie I
 
 
The Wailers with fmj

Reggae on the Rocks, Aug 23, 2003

Reggae on the Rocks, Aug 23, 2003

Reggae on the Rocks, Aug 23, 2003

"And children, everyt'ing is so sweet"  - Bob Marley

DATELINE, Reggae on the Rocks, Colorado, Sept 2003...
Red Rocks is the most beautiful natural amphitheater in the world, and is sacred ground to thousands in this world and beyond. I have been there often in the past, for Reggae on the Rocks, and other shows, and met many of reggae's brightest lights there (like Bunny Wailer in the summer of 2000, which is a rare thing because Bunny does not put on many shows, ever!). But to play there..., and with Bob Marley's legendary group the Wailers, is this BMW fan's fantasy come true. The underground backstage labyrinth of dressing and catering rooms was all set with professional hospitality, and when the Wailers showed up, we had a warm reunion, as I led them back to the their green room, where we watched the opening acts on closed circuit TV, while getting our instruments ready and tuned up for the show. In all, six original Wailers were in the troupe, and I had been on stage with all of them before (with one exception, Junior Marvin). Bob Marley's bass player and musical director, and leader of the Wailers, is Aston "Familyman" Barrett, the father figure of the group. He was responsible for taking Bob's vocal lines and chord progressions, and making them into the eternal music we all know and love. I had called him a few weeks before the show to ask if I could join them for the my tenth big stage show with the Wailers, and he said on the phone "Yes, fluteman, bring your fife and we will see you in Colorado." The Wailers' generosity to me has been incredible, over the past few years. Also on board in the ranks of original Wailers was Junior Marvin, lead guitar and lead vocals for the Wailers. Meeting Junior was incredible, because this would be the first time I ever saw or played with the Wailers, that an original Wailer would be doing the lead singing and frontman work. He said to me "Yeah, flutemanjohn, I heard all about you. I want you to give me all three of your CDs" (which were recent Wailers + fmj concerts, a live Bob Marley fest in Houston with Ras IdI, my Rasta Co-pilot and leader of our local reggae band, and one particular CD of BWM/Upsetters studio work from circa 1970 that I had overtracked with wooden and silver "flute dub", and which the Wailers always ask me for more copies of whenever I see them), and Junior said "I want you to autograph them and make them out "To Junior". Again, I was floored by the Wailers' immpecable generosity, kindness, and willingness to accept this amateur jammer and BMW fan into the stage act. Nobody said "Are you playing tonight?", they just saw me and welcomed me as one of their own, as they have several times before. Other original Wailers coming in the venue included Earl "Wya" Lindo, who single-handedly invented the genre of reggae bubblin' B3 Hammond organ, thirty-some years ago. Two original hornsmen were also on the tour, Glen Da Costa on sax, and my good friend Vin "Trommy" Gordon on trombone. Vin played the sweet bone solo with Bob's vocals, I'm sure you know it: "Well well well well well ya runnin away, did you come up and say your runnin?" That's Vin. These original mighty roots men were told by Bob before he was called home, keep the band going, and here they are more than twenty years later, still on a non-stop world tour. All honor and respect to these mighty legends. Other original Wailers I have been lucky enough to appear with in the past include Al Anderson, Bob's original lead guitar player, and my good friend, and the only American (non-Jamaican) original Wailer. Al was on every Wailer's Island recording since the early 70's, but had other musical irons in the fire and could not be on this leg of the tour. Everytime I see Al, first thing he says is "fluteman! Got your flute? Good. You're gonna play with us tonight." Give thanks for Life. Another Wailer I have had the honor to perform with in the past is Marcia Griffith, an original I-Three vocalist. Keith Sterling was there at Red Rocks on keyboards. Keith Played and toured with Bob extensively in the seventies and eighties. I had the honor to hand him a CD of him playing at Red Rocks with Bunny in 2000. He was really excited about it, and came back later and asked me if I could send him some more copies. All these giants were there that day, and being with them before, during, and after the big stage show is like walking through a redwood forest, with giants all around. "Oh, what a feelin", to be with these originals and originators. With "Drummy Zeb" Williams on Kit, Ras Mel Glover on lead and riddim guitar, and two little birds (two beautiful young Jamaican backup singers), we rounded out the eleven-piece band, and we took the stage by storm, in broad daylight, with 9000 ecstatic reggae fans filling Red Rocks to the top tier of seats. We leaned right in on two Familyman instrumental originals "Cobra Style" and "Well Pleased", and it felt great to lock on with the horn section agian (sax, bone, and flute) and be back in the saddle. When the first horn harmonies went out, I heard and felt the physical reaction from the crowd, and it was a very positive vibration. Junior took the lead mike, and we wailed through many of the favorites of Bob's catalogue, like "Zion Train" "Lively Up Yourself" "Punky Reggae Pary" ("Wailers will be there...!") and "Exodus", a hard rockin roots song that Bob often ended concerts with, and several other well-known Bob Marley songs, with the crowd yelling for more. To be in my favorite place, with my favorite people, making my favorite music, was a major thrill. Number Ten at Red Rocks! Life just does not get any sweeter. One of my favorite moments was the last tune, with Junior Marvin kicking off a sweet soul guitar/vocal solo version of "Redemption Song", and I soflty backed him up on flute. Then, just as in the days of the Tuff Gong, the band came in behind him full power to finish the song. The crowd was indeed "Well Pleased", and the cool pine-sweet air of the mountains, the righteous one-vibe of the rainbow crowd, the rising sweet cloud of cali in the air, and the eternal music of Bob Marley, all swirled together in my head, and it was over way too soon. To these legends, I suppose it was just another show out of hundreds, but to me it was a soul moving experience, and I am forever grateful to the roots men, who carry still the burnin fiya of the revolution to the people. Long live the spirit and the mesage and the music of Bob Marley. Give thanks and praises to the most high, Earth's rightful ruler, Ja Rastafar-I, Selassie-I. Peace, and One Love, flutemanjohn
 
(background...you can read a web-interview about me and the Wailers at http://www.bobmarleymagazine.com/interviews/reader.htm
and please visit my website if you get a chance at
http://home.earthlink.net/~flutemanjohn ) and read all three pages (this is page one) about how I first met and joind the Wailers in January 2000.
 
Other Reggae friends I have met along the way include Ziggy, Stephen, Julian, and Damien Jr. Gong Marley, Bob's mother Cedella Marley Booker, and the Living Wailer, Ja Bunny. Also, earl "Chinna" Smith, Bob's original guitar player in the band he started with his children "The Melody Makers". I consider it a high priveledge and a rare and humbling honor that these people dem know my name, because I am just a humble local reggae jammer, and without a doubt the luckiest Bob Marley fan in the world.

ABOVE ^ Classic CD by Trevor Floweres and IRIE I's, our local reggae group. Produced by flutemanjohn. If you love righteous reggae music, go to our band's webpage and listen/download a couple free trax from the CD. It is upbeat reggae/funk, with some ska, punta, blues, rock, little a dis, little a dat.....
Just hit the Irie I's web link below, at the bottom of this page. Ja Live
:) :) ;) :)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
BELOW Fluteman John feeling a natural mystic vibration, live with the Wailers, onstage at Antone's in Austin, Feb 2001

ABOVE Backstage at Antones Austin Texas, Feb 25 2000, with Wailers:
Left to right: ASTON "FAMILYMAN" BARRETT, BOB MARLEY's ORIGINAL BASS PLAYER and ORIGINAL MUSICAL DIRECTOR of the WAILERS, original Upsetter at LEE PERRYs studio; AL ANDERSON ORIGINAL WAILERS LEAD GUITAR; Fluteman happy guy; WAILERS sound man Vince. This picture was taken minutes after we all came down from final encore, first time I ever played with the WAILERS. Its a year older than the other pix, and its one of my favorite cau' it sho Family with his brother Carley Barrett's tribute album, signing it for a fan. FAMILY MAN BARRETT and CARLETON BARRETT (bass and drums) are the main foundation roots riddim section among all the founding fathers of reggae. They formed BOB MARLEY's original riddim section as the backbone of the Upsetters, Lee Scratch Perry's incredible house session band, where Bob Marley did some of his earliest recording. Carleton Barrett passed away several years ago. Humble Raspect.
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BELOW Everton Gale longime Wailers saxman, Fluteman John, EARL WYA LINDO (!) BOB's ORIGINAL WAILER ORGANIST, Trevor Flowers leader of our Houston roots/rock/reggae band IRIE I's. Backstage after the two night engagment at Antone's in Auston, Feb 2, 2001, making the third time I played my flutes live with the incredible WAILERS.

Sunday, February 4, 2001
Last week, I learned that lightning can strike twice (even three times). I was invited again to play in concert with the incredible Wailers, in Houston, and then four days later in Austin. Like last year, Al Anderson was my sponsor, and called me up to play with reggae superstar Bob Marley's legendary recording and touring group, the Wailers. The core of the original Wailers was on stage: Bob's musical director and bass guitar player from creation, Wailers' leader Aston 'Familyman' Barrett; Al Anderson on lead guitar and vocals (Al was Bob Marley's lead guitar player on studio albums and on tour worldwide in the 70s and early 80s; he also did a stint in Peter Tosh's band), and Earl 'Wya' Lindo on Hammond B3 organ (Earl invented most of the reggae keyboard chops and bubblin' you hear today). (Marcia Griffith, original I-Three singer, was not on this tour, but I had the humble honor to share the stage with Marcia and the Wailers one year ago.) I sincerely thank all the Wailers for their friendship, generosity, and trust, allowing a fan (who sneaked in with the beer and hung around backstage blowing a cane flute) perform side-by-side with the roots musicians of the founding father of reggae music, Robert Nesta Marley.
Two days before the 56th anniversary of his birth, I offer maximum raspect to the family and musical legacy of Bob Marley, and maximum raspect and gratitude to my friends the Wailers, from the heart, every time.
I became aware of Bob Marley, reggae superstar, twenty years ago, the year Bob was called home. Prior, I had only known the name as the writer of Clapton's version of 'I Shot the Sheriff', a global mega-hit. In the college frats, at which I did mobile DJ work at the time, we spun Bob Marley's hits like 'Jammin', 'Sheriff', and 'No Woman No Cry', highly requested songs by the youths. Gradually, the call to the mystical reggae music overtook me. A long-standing fan, I began to attend Ziggy concerts (driving to Miami and back) and Wailers concerts when I could. (Please see this article continued in the column to the right starting "I joined a local Houston reggae band...")

I joined a local Houston reggae band, playing flutes (silver and bamboo), hand percussion, and keyboard, and occasionally singing (not pretty) and playing 12-string guit with Trevor Flowers and Irie I's. I have been playing with them for four years, around Houston and nearby. Last year, we played in Austin on the Bob Marley Festival tour, and we are joining the tour this year (2001) for seven Texas cities (The kick-off festival in Houston was great. Maximum and humble respect to the incredible Texas reggae musicians, like Tchiya Amet, DRUM, and Liberation). On diverse occasions, I have had the honor to meet Bob's mother, Cedella Marley Booker, in Miami in 1998, his children Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers, Steven Marley, Julian Marley, Damian "Junior Gong" Marley, last fall in New Orleans, Jah Bunny Wailer (the Living Wailer) at Red Rocks in Colorado last August (2000), and the Wailers several years ago in Texas, so I considered myself a very lucky fellow, to meet and greet reason with these rasta/reggae legends. But beyond my wildest dreams, I never imagined myself playing live in the front line with the Wailers, by invitation, and getting pictures and a soundboard CD to secure the bragging rights. For those interested, and to document the event, I will tell you the story.
One year ago, I caught wind of a three-night appearance by the Wailers, at the famous Antone's blues bar in Austin Texas. The first night's show was great (Antone's Blues Bar was beginning to enjoy their first encounter with reggae and its fans), and the next afternoon the band was on stage for sound check, and the bar doors were locked. I wandered in with the beer dolly and managed to hang out and play along with the horn section (trumpet, Everton Gail on sax, Nambo on trombone) during rehearsal. They glanced at me quizzically a few times, and during a break I asked if I was bothering them. With big smiles, they said no, that they were enjoying it (my first exposure to the graciousness of the Wailers). [cont'd on page 2]

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FMJ with the WAILERS ar RED ROCKS

FMJ & Trevor Flowers' IRIE I's

FMJ and Umphrey'sMcGee @GardenInnaHeights

I'LL PLAY YOUR FAVORITE SONG, DARLIN'
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WE CAN ROCK IT ALL NIGHT LONG, DARLIN'

 

WORD SOUND AND POWER... Teach one lesson... All those who know the mighty works of Bob Marley and the Wailers, think on this. Bob lives, through his children, his spirit, his message, his music, his Imperial Majesty, Haille Sellassie. The Wailers trod on because Bob said keep the band together. Reggae fans worldwide will it to happen, and it will happen, in the fullness of time .... The Melody Makers and Ghetto Youth, Kymani, the Living Wailer Jah Bunny, Rita and the I-Threes, Chinna and all the Uprising, join forces, voices, and hands across the generations ... with the original rock steady roots musicians, the Wailers. Sticky with Seeco, Al, Chinna and Junior all together, all the horns, the Skatellites. All the Marley children. All their children. Not just one stage show, not just one track, not just one featured artist, not just one television appearance, but the entire Legacy of the Natural Mystic, eternal. The MARLEYS and the WAILERS will be together again, not just for one outing, but musically together again, carryin the burnin fiya of the revolution. One vibe. Bob's most recent accolades attest to sound and power, Lifetime Achievement, Album of the Century, Bob's Star on Hollywoods' Walk of Fame, on and on, no end ... Recent studio work (Don't Care About Me, Tributes), Oracabesa, Marcia touring with the Wailers (2000), Al, Familman, and Wya still together. Year 2006; Bob's original musicians the Skatellites on the same stage with Stephen and Kimani, Vin Gordon on trombone. Reggae on the Rocks #17 with ZIGGY MARLEY & STEPHEN MARLEY & BUNNY WAILER all singing together telling the crowd at Red Rocks to "Get Up Stand Up" ... these things prove what is possible. These mighty forces will unite again, as reggae moves further into the millennia, growing only ever stronger, defining, changing, evolving, always returning to the original and crucial conscious message music. The people will rise up, will be lifted high .... The mighty church of reggae will not sunder, because the foundation was well lain .... the mighty sycamore of Rasta music, lives because the roots run so deep .... Give Humble Thanks. Jah bless.

 
 

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flutemanjohn@earthlink.net

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