Oldies News

Original Wailers member Bunny Wailer dead at age 73

Michael Bunel/NurPhoto via Getty ImagesBunny Wailer, a founding member of The Wailers alongside the late Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, died Tuesday morning at a hospital in Kingston, Jamaica, the Jamaica Observer reports. He was 73.

Wailer’s manager Maxine Stowe confirmed the news to the newspaper, saying, “He died about 8:00 this morning.” No cause of death was announced, but Bunny had suffered multiple strokes in recent years.

Wailer, whose birth name was Neville Livingston, was raised in the Trench Town neighborhood of Kingston. He co-founded The Wailin’ Wailers with Marley and Tosh in 1963, and contributed vocals and percussion¬†to the group. He remained with the band after it changed its name to The Wailers.

As The Wailers began to achieve international success, Wailer and Tosh saw their roles in the group diminished, and in 1973, they both exited the band to focus on solo careers.

Over the years, Bunny released dozens of solo albums, and won three Grammys for Best Reggae Album.

Marley died of cancer in May 1981, while Tosh was shot to death at his home in September 1987.

In 2017, Wailer was honored by the Jamaican Government with a prestigious Order of Merit.

By Matt Friedlander
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