Kaya Tour

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Kaya Tour 1978
Tour by Bob Marley & The Wailers
Start date May 18, 1978
End date August 5, 1978
Legs 3
Shows 40 in North America
12 in Europe
52 in total
Bob Marley & The Wailers concert chronology
Exodus Tour
Kaya Tour
Babylon by Bus Tour

The Kaya Tour was a concert tour organised to support the album Kaya by Bob Marley & The Wailers.

The tour was initially set to begin in early May in Miami, Florida, but the first six shows had to be postponed due to lead guitarist Junior Marvin's cocaine problems. Therefore the tour began in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on May 18, 1978, and ended in Miami, Florida, on August 5, 1978. The tour was divided into three legs, two U.S. legs and one European leg between. Before the tour Marley performed at the One Love Peace Concert on April 22, 1978.

Numerous concerts including the performances in Paris' Pavillon Baltard were recorded in order to release a second live album, Babylon by Bus which is a compilation of songs performed in Paris as well as from earlier shows from the tours in 1975 and 1976.

On July 21, Peter Tosh, who was on tour with the Rolling Stones and performing in Anaheim, stopped by the Starlight Bowl in Burbank (where Bob was playing) and performed "Get Up, Stand Up" with Marley. Mick Jagger is said to have watched the entire show from off stage.

On July 23, the birthday of Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie, reincarnated God of the Rastafari movement, Marley performed in Santa Barbara and did a very rare live performance of his song Sun Is Shining.

While on the tour Marley performed for the first time in Spain and Norway, and also premiered at the Madison Square Garden.

Steel Pulse were the opening act on several of Marley's European dates on the tour.


After the first quarter of the tour the setlists became more standardised and mostly looked like the following:

  • "Positive Vibration"
  • "them Belly Full (but We Hungry)"
  • "Concrete Jungle"
  • "Rebel Music (3 O'Clock Roadblock)"
  • "the Heathen"
  • "War" / "No More Trouble" (medley)
  • "Running Away" / "Crazy Baldhead" (medley)
  • "Crisis"
  • "I Shot The Sheriff"
  • "No Woman, No Cry"
  • "is this Love"
  • "Jamming"
  • "Lively Up Yourself"
  • "Easy Skanking"
  • "Get Up, Stand Up"
  • "Exodus"

At the beginning of the tour a Nyabinghi chant called "So Long Rastafari" (sometimes as a medley with "Time Will Tell") had been performed at the start of the show, followed by "Concrete Jungle", "Burnin' and Lootin'" and "them Belly Full (but We Hungry)". Since the Nyabinghi chant was very meditative and slow until it segued into the lively reggae beat of "Concrete Jungle", it was decided to replace the chant by the classic and instantly lively "Positive Vibration" to better catch the audience from the beginning. The same procedure was done at the beginning of the Rastaman Vibration Tour in 1976 when a medley of Nyabinghi chants, like "Lion of Judah" and "Rastaman Chant," opened the sets, but was later replaced.

It is reported that all songs from the Kaya album had been performed at least once. There are reports of various people (concert attenders, band members) that Marley did unusual long concerts in Ann Arbor MI, Lenox MA, and Oslo (Norway), each with a setlist full of rarely performed songs. There were also performances of an earlier song, "Punky Reggae Party", which is not featured on any of Marley's Island albums released at that time, but was released as a single in 1977. When performed it was part of a medley along with "Get Up, Stand Up".

From show to show sometimes an additional song was edged in somewhere in the setlist, like "Slave Driver", "Burnin' and Lootin'", "Punky Reggae Party", "Kaya", "Sun Is Shining", "Time Will Tell", "One Love", "Natural Mystic", "Waiting in Vain", "So Much Things To Say", "Talkin' Blues", "Who the Cap Fit", "Rat Race" and "Roots, Rock, Reggae". Live performances of each of these songs happened very rarely during the tour.

Tour dates[edit]

Date City Country Venue
May 5, 1978 Miami United States Jai Alai Fronton Cancelled
May 6, 1978 Atlanta Fox Theatre Cancelled
May 7, 1978 New Orleans The Warehouse Cancelled
May 11, 1978 Houston Music Hall Cancelled
May 12, 1978 Fort Worth Will Rogers Auditorium Cancelled
May 14, 1978 Austin Paramount Theater, University of Texas Cancelled
May 18, 1978 Ann Arbor Hill Auditorium
May 19, 1978 Cleveland Public Auditorium
May 24, 1978 Columbus Veterans Memorial Auditorium
May 25, 1978 Madison Orpheum Theater
2 shows
May 27, 1978 Chicago Uptown Theatre
May 29, 1978 Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
2 shows
May 30, 1978 Minneapolis Northrop Auditorium
June 2, 1978 Pittsburgh Stanley Theater
June 3, 1978 Syracuse Landmark Theatre
June 4, 1978 Detroit Detroit Masonic Temple
June 5, 1978 Philadelphia The Spectrum Theater
June 8, 1978 Boston Music Hall
2 shows
June 9, 1978 Toronto Canada Maple Leaf Gardens
Tower of Power opened
June 10, 1978 Montreal Montreal Forum
June 11, 1978 Buffalo United States Shea's Buffalo Cancelled
June 12, 1978 Poughkeepsie Civic Center
June 14, 1978 Shelton Pinecrest Country Club
June 16, 1978 Landover Capital Centre
June 17, 1978 New York City Madison Square Garden
June 18, 1978 Lenox Music Inn
June 22, 1978 Stafford England New Bingley Hall
June 25, 1978 Paris France Pavillon de Paris
June 26, 1978
June 27, 1978
June 28, 1978 Ibiza Spain Plaza de Toros
June 29, 1978 Gothenburg Sweden Scandinavium Cancelled
June 30, 1978 Stockholm Gröna Lund
July 1, 1978 Roskilde Denmark Roskilde Festival
July 2, 1978 Horten Norway Horten Festival
July 4, 1978 Gdańsk Poland Hala Olivia
July 7, 1978 Rotterdam Netherlands Ahoy Rotterdam
July 8, 1978 Geleen IJshall
July 9, 1978 Brussels Belgium Forest National
July 13, 1978 London England Top of the Pops
BBC TV broadcast
July 14, 1978 Vancouver Canada Queen Elizabeth Theatre
2 shows
July 15, 1978 Seattle United States Paramount Theatre
2 shows
July 16, 1978 Portland Paramount Theatre
July 18, 1978 Santa Cruz Civic Center
2 shows
July 20, 1978 Berkeley Greek Theater, University of California
July 21, 1978 Burbank Starlight Bowl
Peter Tosh Special Appearance
July 22, 1978 San Diego Peterson Gym
July 23, 1978 Santa Barbara Santa Barbara Bowl
July 24, 1978 Burbank Starlight Bowl
July 25, 1978 Los Angeles The Roxy Theater
July 27, 1978 Austin Municipal Auditorium
July 28, 1978 Fort Worth Tarrant County Convention Center
July 29, 1978 Houston Music Hall
July 30, 1978 New Orleans The Warehouse
August 1, 1978 Atlanta Fox Theatre
August 5, 1978 Miami Jai Alai Fronton