The Wailing Souls, part of the small surviving group of reggae and roots originators still musically active today, will play The Cafe at Parlor Newport this Sunday, July 2nd in their only New England appearance this summer.
The legendary group dates back to the late 1960s and members got their start learning from reggae icon Joe Higgs in Jamaica’s Trench Town yards and sung alongside other emerging groups at the time including Bob Marley & The Wailers. By the ’70s The Wailing Souls attracted interest from preeminent reggae producer Coxson Dodd and began a fruitful recording career. Four decades later the group has amassed three Grammy nominations, has been critically lauded for albums released by Island, Tuff Gong and CBS Records and gained a widespread international following.
The Wailing Souls saw large success in the early ’90s featuring songs on soundtracks including the certified gold album for Disney’s film Cool Runnings. Their 1992 album All Over The World also achieved a great deal of success for the group, selling over 800,000 copies.
The Wailing Souls pushed the musical limits of the reggae genre with that release, blending sounds of funk, r&b, and country into their roots tradition, securing their reputations as pioneers in the genre.
Fusing the harmonies of Motown with the roots and dancehall sounds of reggae, The Wailing Souls persist as one of the most powerful forces in Jamaican music. To this day, the group continues to release provocative, highly regarded regarded albums and is one of the most popular live reggae acts on the scene.