It may have been the last album from the Wailers, but it was one that would leave a significant mark.
On October 1973, a mere six months after releasing Catch a Fire, the group released Burnin’, an album that would contained two of both Marley and the Wailers’ most notable songs, “Get Up, Stand Up” and “I Shot the Sheriff”. Burnin’ turned out to be the Wailers’ last album, before members Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer left for solo careers, and the group became Bob Marley and the Wailers. Also, the album was not a big chart hit, peaking at number 151 on the pop charts, and peaked one position shy of the R&B top forty. However, Burnin’ would eventually become one of those albums where its success and acclaim could never be measured by chart ranking.
In fact, while Burnin’ would not be a huge album for the Wailers upon its release, reggae was on its way in becoming introduced to American audiences, just like it had already taken the UK by storm. In 1974, “I Shot the Sheriff” became a number one hit for Eric Clapton. And then in the late 1990s, the wooden-designed album cover would become the inspiration for Lauryn Hill’s album The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, which used a similar background.
Burnin’ would also go on to be certified gold in America (and silver in the UK), and ranked number 319 in Rolling Stone’s list of 500 greatest albums of all time. It is also in Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry, credited for its historical and cultural significance.