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Classic Albums - Bob Marley & The Wailers: Catch A Fire

Bunny Wailer , Bob Marley    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
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In the late '60s, the notion that reggae would become more than just a novelty act would have been laughed at. To break into the mainstream, the movement needed a powerful voice of prophetic proportions. This voice emerged from the collective work of three pioneering friends from Jamaica, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer, and Robert Nesta Marley, who sought to bring about an ideological revolution through deeply meditative, hypnotic, and spiritual music. Catch a Fire was the Wailers' and reggae's introduction to the world and turned Bob Marley into a mega-icon of enormous proportions. It was the first album to remain true to the traditions of reggae music while having enough elements that were accessible to popular culture.

This documentary, Bob Marley and the Wailers: Catch a Fire, returns to Dynamic Studios in Kingston, Jamaica, shedding light on the development of the album, the thought process of Bob, Peter, and Bunny, and the importance of the music on a song-by-song basis. The story of Catch a Fire is presented through interviews with the band members, studio musicians, and former head of Island Records Chris Blackwell. Throughout are raw studio rehearsal footage, BBC TV footage, and home movies that include performances of "Concrete Jungle," "Slave Driver," "Stir It Up," and "Stop That Train." The documentary wraps up with rare black-and-white footage of the Wailers' tour in Edmonton, London, in 1973 with an electrifying performance of the Burnin' song "Get Up, Stand Up." --Rob Bracco

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Insight May 14 2002
This is a wonderful video for anyone interested in the technical aspects of the creation of a classic album, and the efforts of the production team to translate a "new" musical style to the masses. With a strong focus on the music-- especially the drum and bass-- and indispensible interviews with the original Wailers as well as the session musicians who contributed to the album. Bass Players will love the priceless interviews with "Family Man" Barrett and Robbie Shakespeare. This is not a concert video, but a great look behind the scenes at the making of a breakthrough record, including a track-by-track breakdown of some of the original studio tapes. Highly recommended for musicians. May bore the heck out of non-musicaians.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Copyright infringement June 17 2001
By A Customer
My lawyers will be contacting you immediately to stop the sale of this illegal product. Isis Productions, the company that produced it, has used my photograph of Bob Marley on the cover of the DVD, and in the documentary, without my permission, knowing that I own its copyright. The same unlawful act regards the B/W footage I shot in 1973, for which I have not consented to its use. This is a very serious infringement of my copyright and my estate, and will be contacting customs & excise in the USA to stop any further sales. If you continue to sell this product regardless, you should be aware that you're liable for prosecution.
For your information: I have only given permission to use my B/W footage to the makers of Rebel Music, the Bob Marley Story.
The Artist Esther Anderson Photographer and filmmaker of Bob Marley and the Wailers Winner of Image Award in "A Warm december" opposite Sidney Poitier
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5.0 out of 5 stars wonderful DOCUMENTARY May 11 2001
One in the continuing series by Rhino called "Classic Albums," this documentary of the Wailers' classic lp "Catch a Fire" will serve as a perfect compliment to the recently issued 2 cd set of "Catch a Fire" which contains the original Jamaican version of the lp.
For me personally, the reason to get the dvd is not Marley himself- there are many documentaries and concerts of Marley on the market that can be had- but the interviews with Bunny Wailer and the late, great Peter Tosh, as well as the vintage footage of the 3 original (and only, in my book) Wailers in concert. As one frustrated reviewer pointed out, there are not whole performances by the Wailers on this dvd- snipets abound within the context of the documentary. While to fans of Tosh, in particular, this is a shame, the dvd IS a documentary, and not live performances, so the lack of complete footage needs to be taken in stride.
What the dvd DOES offer, however, are wonderful anecdotes from Bunny Wailer, (including a solo rendition of "Slave Driver" that is riviting) Alston "Family Man" Barrett, Rita Marley, Chris Blackwell, guitarist wayne Perkins, and keyboardist Rabbit Bundrick, on the making of the lp. Archival interviews with Tosh and Marley add the perspectives of the lp's 2 main catalysts. As with all the Rhino dvds, the work given to this dvd is top rate, with the interviews backed by examples, live performances by many of the key players on the lp, and scenes of Chris Blackwell rolling the master acetates in his recording studio to break down what was happening on certain tracks.
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4.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing Documentary! July 16 2000
Having already seen the "The Grateful Dead:From Anthem to Beauty" episode of the "Classic Albums" series I knew what to expect from this DVD. This series is about retracing history, and documenting the process of creating the classic albums of the past 30 years before the creators pass from the earth and their words are lost forever. Short on "features" that we've been spoiled with on other DVDs , on the surface this is a straight forward 60 min. doc on the making of the "Catch A Fire" album by The Wailers. The strength of this production, and in fact the whole series, is that the producers went to Jamaica and London to interview the people who wrote, recorded, engineered, produced and played on this seminal album. Recent interviews with Bunny Wailer, Rita Marley, Chris Blackwell, and surviving members of the Wailers live and studio bands are very insightful. Add to that the fact that the DVD features archival interviews with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh. These further deepen the viewer's understanding of their musical and social philosophies and how it was expressed in their music. Through all of these people you get a very complete picture of the commercial, religious, social, and economic pressures on the band to bring the message of Reggae Music from the Third world to the First. Finally, the highlight of the disc has to be the rare and some never-seen-before footage of the original Wailers live in England in the early '70's. You finally see Bob, Bunny and Peter sing those amazing harmonies live which,IMHO, has more impact now because NOBODY sings their own harmonies live anymore without some sort of pre-recorded assistance. Read more ›
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for Some...
Though interesting, this DVD only focuses on the production of one album that the Wailers made in 1973, 'Catch a Fire', their first Island Records album. Read more
Published on Nov. 22 2006 by MLY
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing DVD
As a fan of music, but knowing little about its technical aspects and production, this documentary/concert dvd was a godsend. Interviews with people who made the album. Read more
Published on Oct. 9 2001 by Dave Rosenthal
3.0 out of 5 stars Too Lousy
I was thinking about a live concert no a loudsy sound engineer saying who he mix the songs and those stuped terminology, I want Bob Live not that kind of stuff.
Published on Sept. 3 2001 by Carlos Cotto
5.0 out of 5 stars robert
this is a great live recording of bob and the wailers,the sounds are very clear and smooth while bob gives his knowledge and teaching to the people and i would recomend this one to... Read more
Published on Aug. 14 2001 by robert perez
5.0 out of 5 stars great companion to "rebel music"
this is a great companion to the official marley documentary "rebel music." many of the performances, interviews and home videos are culled from the same tapes, but... Read more
Published on Aug. 9 2001 by nestalicious
1.0 out of 5 stars Bob Marley and the Wailers
Customer reviews were misleading. There is not a single complete Marley song in this documentary. It is a series of disjointed, inane and largely irrelevant interviews with... Read more
Published on July 30 2000 by Steven F. Lowe
5.0 out of 5 stars Bob Marley and the wailers-catch a fire
No need to say much.This is wonderfull.Brings back memories of Bob at his best.Worth every cent.I have watched it over 30 times already.Put it on,pour a rum,and enjoy
Published on June 10 2000 by Paul Collins
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