Bob Marley may be gone, but he’s not forgotten.
The Los Angeles City Council proclaimed Tuesday, Aug. 7, Bob Marley Day. The move coincided with the DVD release of the documentary Marley.
Miamians don’t have a day to honor the Jamaican reggae legend, whose hits include I Shot the Sheriff, Redemption Song and No Woman, No Cry, even though a number of his family members still live there.
But on Friday, we’ve got the next best thing. His old band, The Wailers, are coming to town to give a free concert. Original member Aston “Family Man” Barrett is still playing with the crew. Koolant Brown has stepped in as lead singer for the last three years.
“It’s a privilege and an honor to sing his songs,’’ says Brown of his childhood idol who died of skin cancer in 1981 at 36.
Though he’ll “never be Bob,” Brown does his best to channel him.
“All his songs are stuck in my brain. I’ve loved his music for a long time. I’m always trying to push hard and still have more to go,” he says. “If someone is singing someone else’s song I would expect them to own it and make something better come out of it.”
How different are the two men?
“I’m me. I’m Koolant. I’m an Aquarius. I’m a cool guy.”
Brown’s favorite classic to perform is One Love.
“I think people in the the world should make love and respect one another,’’ Brown says. “I’m a man of peace with a positive message.”
Concert details: The DWNTWN Miami Concert Series kicks off its inaugural Summer Season at the Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts. Doors open at 7 p.m., show starts at 8 p.m. http://dwntwnconcerts.com