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Bob Marley

Bob Marley
Bob Marley

spread Jamaican music to a worldwide audience.[1] Marley’s best known hits include "I Shot the Sheriff", "No Woman, No Cry", "Exodus", "Could You Be Loved", "Stir It Up", "Jamming", "Redemption Song", "One Love" and, together with The Wailers, "Three Little Birds",[2] as well as the posthumous releases "Buffalo Soldier" and "Iron Lion Zion". The compilation album, Legend, released in 1984, three years after his death, is the best-selling reggae album ever (10 times platinum in US),[3] with sales of more than 20 million copies.[4][5]

Bob Marley performing in Zurich, Switzerland on May 30, 1980

Early life and career

Bob Marley was born in the small village of Nine Mile in Saint Ann Parish, Jamaica as Background information Nesta Robert Marley.[6] A Jamaican passport official would later swap his first and middle Robert Nesta Marley Birth name names.[7] His father Norval Sinclair Marley February 6, 1945(1945-02-06) Born was a white English Jamaican. Norval was a Nine Mile, Saint Ann, Jamaica captain in the Royal Marines, as well as a May 11, 1981 (aged 36) Died plantation overseer, when he married Cedella Miami, Florida, United States Booker, an Afro-Jamaican then eighteen years old.[8] Norval provided financial supReggae, ska, rocksteady Genre(s) port for his wife and child, but seldom saw Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter, musician them, as he was often away on trips. In 1955, when Marley was 10 years old, his father Instrument(s) Vocals, guitar, percussion died of a heart attack at age 60.[9] Marley 1962 – 1981 Years active suffered racial prejudice as a youth, because Studio One, Beverley’s, Label(s) of his mixed racial origins and faced quesUpsetter/Trojan, Island/Tuff Gong tions about his own racial identity throughout his life. He once reflected: Member of The Wailers, Associated
acts band leader of the Wailers Band, associated with the The Upsetters, associated with the I Threes



Robert "Bob" Nesta Marley OM (February 6, 1945 – May 11, 1981) was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician. He was the lead singer, songwriter and guitarist for the ska, rocksteady and reggae bands The Wailers (1964 – 1974) and Bob Marley & the Wailers (1974 – 1981). Marley remains the most widely known and revered performer of reggae music, and is credited for helping

I don’t have prejudice against meself. ” My father was a white and my mother was black. Them call me half-caste or whatever. Me don’t dip on nobody’s side. Me don’t dip on the black man’s side nor the white man’s side. Me dip on God’s side, the one who create me and cause me to come from black and white.[10]

Although Marley recognized his mixed ancestry, throughout his life and because of his beliefs, he self-identified as a black African [11] [12] [13]. In songs such as "Black Progress,", "African Herbsman," "Buffalo Soldier", "War"


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and others, Marley sings about the struggles of blacks and Africans against oppression from the West or "Babylon." [14] Marley became friends with Neville "Bunny" Livingston (later known as Bunny Wailer), with whom he started to play music. He left school at the age of 14 to make music with Joe Higgs, a local singer and devout Rastafari. It was at a jam session with Higgs and Livingston that Marley met Peter McIntosh (later known as Peter Tosh), who had similar musical ambitions.[15] In 1962, Marley recorded his first two singles, "Judge Not" and "One Cup of Coffee", with local music producer Leslie Kong. These songs, released on the Beverley’s label under the pseudonym of Bobby Martell,[16] attracted little attention. The songs were later rereleased on the box set, Songs of Freedom, a posthumous collection of Marley’s work.

Bob Marley
recording rights, but they would remain friends and work together again.

Musical career
The Wailers
In 1963, Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh, Junior Braithwaite, Beverley Kelso, and Cherry Smith formed a ska and rocksteady group, calling themselves "The Teenagers". They later changed their name to "The Wailing Rudeboys", then to "The Wailing Wailers", at which point they were discovered by record producer Coxsone Dodd, and finally to "The Wailers". By 1966, Braithwaite, Kelso, and Smith had left The Wailers, leaving the core trio of Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, and Peter Tosh. In 1966, Marley married Rita Anderson, and moved near his mother’s residence in Wilmington, Delaware in the United States for a short time, during which he worked as a DuPont lab assistant and on the assembly line at a Chrysler plant, under the alias Donald Marley.[17] Upon returning to Jamaica, Marley became a member of the Rastafari movement, and started to wear his trademark dreadlocks (see the religion section for more on Marley’s religious views). After a conflict with Dodd, Marley and his band teamed up with Lee "Scratch" Perry and his studio band, The Upsetters. Although the alliance lasted less than a year, they recorded what many consider The Wailers’ finest work. Marley and Perry split after a dispute regarding the assignment of

Between 1968 and 1972, Bob and Rita Marley, Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer re-cut some old tracks with JAD Records in Kingston and London in an attempt to commercialize The Wailers’ sound. Bunny later asserted that these songs "should never be released on an album … they were just demos for record companies to listen to." Also in 1968, Bob and Rita visited the Bronx to see Johnny Nash’s songwriter Jimmy Norman.[18] A three day jam session with Norman and others, including Norman’s co-writer Al Pyfrom, resulted in a 24-minute tape of Marley performing several of his own and NormanPyfrom’s compositions which is, according to Reggae archivist Roger Steffens, rare in that was influenced by pop rather than reggae, as part of the effort to break Marley into American charts.[18] According to an article in The New York Times, Marley experimented on the tape with different sounds, adopting a doo-wop style on "Stay With Me" and "the slow love song style of 1960’s artists" on "Splish for My Splash."[18] The Wailers’ first album, Catch a Fire, was released worldwide in 1973, and sold well. It was followed a year later by Burnin’, which included the songs "Get Up, Stand Up" and "I Shot The Sheriff". Eric Clapton made a hit cover of "I Shot the Sheriff" in 1974, raising Marley’s international profile. The Wailers broke up in 1974 with each of the three main members going on to pursue solo careers. The reason for the breakup is


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shrouded in conjecture; some believe that there were disagreements amongst Bunny, Peter, and Bob concerning performances, while others claim that Bunny and Peter simply preferred solo work.

Bob Marley
rendition of Curtis Mayfield’s hit, "People Get Ready". It was here that he was arrested and received a conviction for possession of a small quantity of cannabis while traveling in London. In 1978, Marley performed at another political concert in Jamaica, the One Love Peace Concert, again in an effort to calm warring parties. Near the end of the performance, by Marley’s request, Manley and his political rival, Edward Seaga, joined each other on stage and shook hands. Babylon by Bus, a double live album with 13 tracks, was released in 1978 to critical acclaim. This album, and specifically the final track "Jammin’" with the audience in a frenzy, captured the intensity of Marley’s live performances. Survival, a defiant and politically charged album, was released in 1979. Tracks such as "Zimbabwe", "Africa Unite", "Wake Up and Live", and "Survival" reflected Marley’s support for the struggles of Africans. His appearance at the Amandla Festival in Boston in July 1979 showed his strong opposition to South African apartheid, which he already had shown in his song "War" in 1976. In early 1980, he was invited to perform at the April 17 celebration of Zimbabwe’s Independence Day. Uprising (1980) was Bob Marley’s final studio album, and is one of his most religious productions, including "Redemption Song" and "Forever Loving Jah". It was in "Redemption Song" that Marley sang the famous lyric, “ Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery None but ourselves can free our minds… ”

Bob Marley & The Wailers
Despite the breakup, Marley continued recording as "Bob Marley & The Wailers". His new backing band included brothers Carlton and Aston "Family Man" Barrett on drums and bass respectively, Junior Marvin and Al Anderson on lead guitar, Tyrone Downie and Earl "Wya" Lindo on keyboards, and Alvin "Seeco" Patterson on percussion. The "I Threes", consisting of Judy Mowatt, Marcia Griffiths, and Marley’s wife, Rita, provided backing vocals. In 1975, Marley had his international breakthrough with his first hit outside Jamaica, "No Woman, No Cry," from the Natty Dread album. This was followed by his breakthrough album in the US, Rastaman Vibration (1976), which spent four weeks on the Billboard charts Top Ten. In December 1976, two days before "Smile Jamaica", a free concert organized by the Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley in an attempt to ease tension between two warring political groups, Marley, his wife, and manager Don Taylor were wounded in an assault by unknown gunmen inside Marley’s home. Taylor and Marley’s wife sustained serious injuries, but later made full recoveries. Bob Marley received minor wounds in the chest and arm. The shooting was thought to have been politically motivated, as many felt the concert was really a support rally for Manley. Nonetheless, the concert proceeded, and an injured Marley performed as scheduled, two days after the attempt. When asked why, Marley responded, "the people who are trying to make this world worse aren’t taking a day off. How can I?". The members of the group Zap Pow – which had no radical religious or political beliefs – played as Bob Marley’s backup band before a festival crowd of 80,000 while members of the Wailers were still missing or in hiding.[19] Marley left Jamaica at the end of 1976 for England, where he recorded his Exodus and Kaya albums. Exodus stayed on the British album charts for 56 consecutive weeks. It included four UK hit singles: "Exodus", "Waiting In Vain", "Jamming", "One Love", and a

Confrontation, released posthumously in 1983, contained unreleased material recorded during Marley’s lifetime, including the hit "Buffalo Soldier" and new mixes of singles previously only available in Jamaica.

Later years
In July 1977, Marley was found to have acral lentiginous melanoma, a form of malignant melanoma, in a football wound - according to widely held urban legend, inflicted by broadcaster and pundit Danny Baker[20] - on his right big toe. Marley refused amputation,


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because of the Rastafari belief that the body must be "whole." Marley may have seen medical doctors as samfai (tricksters, deceivers). True to this belief Marley went against all surgical possibilities and sought out other means that would not break his religious beliefs. He also refused to register a will, based on the Rastafari belief that writing a will is acknowledging death as inevitable, thus disregarding the everlasting (or everliving, as Rastas say) character of life. The cancer then metastasized to Marley’s brain, lungs, liver, and stomach. After playing two shows at Madison Square Garden as part of his fall 1980 Uprising Tour, he collapsed while jogging in NYC’s Central Park. The remainder of the tour was subsequently cancelled. Marley played his final concert at the Stanley Theater in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on September 23, 1980. The live version of "Redemption Song" on Songs of Freedom was recorded at this show.[21] Marley afterwards sought medical help from Munich specialist Josef Issels, who promoted a controversial type of cancer treatment, partly based on avoidance of certain foods, drinks and other substances (Marley was also already a vegetarian, mainly for religious reasons).[22]. However, by this time his illness had already progressed to the terminal stage.

Bob Marley
In 2001, Marley was posthumously awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and a feature-length documentary about his life, Rebel Music, won various awards at the Grammys. With contributions from Rita, the Wailers, and Marley’s lovers and children, it also tells much of the story in his own words. In 2006, the State of New York renamed a portion of Church Avenue from Remsen Avenue to East 98th Street in the East Flatbush section of Brooklyn "Bob Marley Boulevard".[29]

Rastafari movement

Main doctrines Jah · Afrocentrism · Ital · Zion · Cannabis use Central figures Jesus Christ · Haile Selassie · Marcus Garvey · Leonard Howell · God Key scriptures Bible · Kebra Nagast · The Promise Key · Holy Piby · My Life and Ethiopia’s Progress · Royal Parchment Scroll of Black Supremacy Branches and festivals Mansions · United States · Shashamane · Grounation Day Notable individuals Bob Marley · Walter Rodney · Mutabaruka See also: Vocabulary · Persecution · Dreadlocks · Reggae · Ethiopian Christianity · Index of Rastafari articles Bob Marley was a member of the Rastafari movement, whose culture was a key element in the development of reggae. Bob Marley became a leading proponent of the Rastafari, taking their music out of the socially deprived areas of Jamaica and onto the international music scene. Marley was baptized by the Archbishop of the Ethiopian Orthodox Christian Church in Kingston, Jamaica, on November 4, 1980.[30][31] Judy Mowatt, a member of the I Threes, has claimed that Marley converted to Christianity on his deathbed.[32]

Death and posthumous reputation
While flying home from Germany to Jamaica for his final days, Marley became ill, and landed in Miami for immediate medical attention. He died at Cedars of Lebanon Hospital in Miami on the morning of May 11, 1981, at the age of 36. The spread of melanoma to his lungs and brain caused his death. His final words to his son Ziggy were "Money can’t buy life."[23] Marley received a state funeral in Jamaica on May 21, 1981, which combined elements of Ethiopian Orthodoxy and Rastafari tradition.[24] He was buried in a chapel near his birthplace with his Fender Stratocaster.[25] A month before his death, he had also been awarded the Jamaican Order of Merit.[26] Marley was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.[27] Time magazine chose Bob Marley & The Wailers’ Exodus as the greatest album of the 20th century.[28]


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Bob Marley
• May–Sep 1980: (Switzerland, Germany, France, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, USA)

Wife and children
Bob Marley had 12 children: three with his wife Rita, two adopted from Rita’s previous relationships, and the remaining seven with separate women.[33] His children are, in order of birth: 1. Sharon, born November 23, 1964, to Rita in previous relationship; 2. Cedella born August 23, 1967, to Rita; 3. David "Ziggy", born October 17, 1968, to Rita; 4. Stephen, born April 20, 1972, to Rita; 5. Robert "Robbie", born May 16, 1972, to Pat Williams; 6. Rohan, born May 19, 1972, to Janet Hunt; 7. Karen, born 1973 to Janet Bowen; 8. Stephanie, born August 17, 1974; according to Cedella Booker she was the daughter of Rita and a man called Ital with whom Rita had an affair; nonetheless she was acknowledged as Bob’s daughter; 9. Julian, born June 4, 1975, to Lucy Pounder; 10. Ky-Mani, born February 26, 1976, to Anita Belnavis; 11. Damian, born July 21, 1978, to Cindy Breakspeare; 12. Makeda, born May 30, 1981, to Yvette Crichton. 13. Imani Carole , born 1963 to Cheryl Murray

Awards and honours

Discography Tours
• • • • Apr–Jul 1973: (England, USA) Oct–Nov 1973: (USA, England) Jun–Jul 1975: (USA, Canada, England) Apr–Jul 1976: (USA, Canada, Germany, Sweden, Netherlands, France, England, Wales) May–Jun 1977: (France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, England) May–Aug 1978: (USA, Canada, England, France, Spain, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Netherlands, Belgium) Apr–May 1979: (Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii) Oct 1979–Jan 1980: (USA, Canada, Trinidad/Tobago, Bahamas, Gabon)

Marley’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame • 1976: Band of the Year (Rolling Stone) • June 1978: Awarded the Peace Medal of the Third World from the United Nations • February 1981: Awarded Jamaica’s third highest honor, the Jamaican Order of Merit • March 1994: Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame • 1999: Album of the Century for Exodus (Time magazine) • February 2001: A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame • February 2001: Awarded Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award • 2004: Rolling Stone ranked him #11 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.[34] • "One Love" named song of the millennium by The BBC



• •


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• Voted as one of the greatest lyricists of all time by a BBC poll.[35] • 2006 A plaque dedicated to him by Nubian Jak community trust and supported by Her Majesty’s Foreign Office.[36]

Bob Marley

Film adaptation(s)
In February 2008, director Martin Scorsese announced his intention to produce a documentary movie on Marley. The film is set to be released on February 6, 2010, on what would have been Marley’s 65th birthday.[37] Recently, however, Scorsese dropped out due to scheduling problems. He is being replaced by Jonathan Demme.[38] In March 2008, The Weinstein Company announced its plans to produce a biopic of Bob Marley, based on the book No Woman No Cry: My Life With Bob Marley by Rita Marley. Rudy Langlais will produce the script by Lizzie Borden and Rita Marley will exec produce.[39]

Sound samples
• "Simmer Down" (1964)

See also
• • • • • Bob Marley Museum Aston "Family Man" Barrett Junior Marvin Al Anderson List of honorific titles in popular music

[1] EMP|SFM: 2007 Pop Conference Bios/ Abstracts [2] "Bob Marley," Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2006 [3] Doug Miller, "Concert Series: ’No Woman, No Cry’",, February 26, 2007 [4] "Top Earners for 2004". Forbes. cx_2004deadcelebtears_9.html. Retrieved on November 30, 2008. [5] "Rolling in the money". iAfrica. features/1051960.htm. Retrieved on November 30, 2008. [6] Moskowitz 2007, p. 1 [7] Moskowitz 2007, p. 9 [8] Moskowitz 2007, p. 2

[9] Moskowitz 2007, p. 4 [10] Webley, Bishop Derek (May 10, 2008). "One world, one love, one Bob Marley". The Birmingham Post. comment/birmingham-columnists/morecolumnists/2008/05/10/bishop-webleyone-world-one-love-one-bobmarley-65233-20891539/. Retrieved on June 15, 2008. [11] BBC: Religion and Ethics: Rastafari [12] [ dreadlibrary/gurtman02.htm Influence of Marley’s Absent Father [13] Salon [14] Middleton 2000, p. 181-198 [15] Ankeny, Jason. "Bob Marley - Biography". Allmusic. amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:0ifpxqq5ldte~T1. Retrieved on June 15, 2008. [16] The Beverley Label and Leslie Kong: Music Business at [17] Timothy White, Bob Marley: 1945-1981, Rolling Stone, June 25, 1981 [18] ^ McKinley, Jesse (December 19, 2002). "Pre-reggae tape of Bob Marley is found and put on auction". New York Times. fullpage.html?res=9803E2DD133DF93AA25751C1A9 Retrieved on January 4, 2009. [19] Walker, Jeff (1980) on the cover of Zap Pow’s LP Reggae Rules. Los Angeles: Rhino Records. [20] When Bob Marley joined the Bloomsbury set - This Britain, UK - The Independent [21] songs.cgi?redemption [22] Bob Marley (I) - Biography [23] Steffens, Roger. "Bob Marley Chronology 1945-1981". artists/bob_marley/chronology.htm. Retrieved on October 26, 2006. [24] Moskowitz 2007, p. 116 [25] "Bob Marley". Find a Grave. January 1, 2001. Retrieved on April 16, 2009. [26] "Bob Marley Biography". deathiversary/bob-marley/bobmarley.jsp. Retrieved on April 16, 2009. [27] "Bob Marley". Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. bob-marley. Retrieved on April 16, 2009. [28] "The Best Of The Century". Time. December 31, 1999.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia 0,8816,993039,00.html. Retrieved on April 16, 2009. [29] Brooklyn Street Renamed Bob Marley Boulevard [30] "The Ethiopian Orthodox Church & Bob Marley’s Baptism And The Church". ethiopian_church.shtml. [31] "Bob Marley’s Baptism in Ethiopian Orthodox Church". forum/archive1/;read=47421. [32] From Rasta To Disciple: Reggae gospel singer Judy Mowatt spoke to Mike Rimmer [33] Dixon, Meredith."Lovers and Children of the Natural Mystic: The Story of Bob Marley, Women and their Children" The Dread Library (Accessed June 21, 2007) [34] "The Immortals: The First Fifty". Rolling Stone Issue 946. Rolling Stone. 5939214/the_immortals_the_first_fifty. [35] "Who is the greatest lyricist of all time", BBC, May 23, 2001 [36] "London honours legendary reggae artist Bob Marley with heritage plaque". site/content/view/63/54. [37] Winter Miller (February 17, 2008). "Scorsese to make Marley documentary". Ireland On-Line. story.asp?j=246581796&p=z4658z5xz. Retrieved on March 6, 2008. [38] "Martin Scorsese Drops Out of Bob Marley Documentary". May 22, 2008. headline.php?id=8737&count=25. Retrieved on May 26, 2008. [39] Winter Miller (March 3, 2008). "Weinstein Co. options Marley". Variety. VR1117981772.html?categoryid=13&cs=1. Retrieved on March 3, 2008.

Bob Marley
• Goldman, Vivien (2006). The Book of Exodus: The Making and Meaning of Bob Marley and the Wailers’ Album of the Century, Aurum Press ISBN 1845132106 • Henke, James (2006). Marley Legend: An Illustrated Life of Bob Marley, Simon & Schuster Ltd ISBN 0743285514 • Marley, Rita; Jones, Hettie (2004) No Woman No Cry: My Life with Bob Marley Hyperion Books ISBN 0786887559 • Masouri, John (2007) Wailing Blues: The Story of Bob Marley’s "Wailers" Wise Publications ISBN 1846096898 • Moskowitz, David (2007), The Words and Music of Bob Marley, Westport, Connecticut, United States: Greenwood Publishing Group, ISBN 0275989356, books?id=JJ4ub5h5E6sC&printsec=frontcover • White, Timothy (2006). Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley Owl Books ISBN 0805080864 • Middleton, J. Richard (2000), Religion, culture, and tradition in the Caribbean: Identity and Subversion in Babylon: Strategies for "Resisting Against the System" in music of Bob Marley and the Wailers, Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 031223242X

External links
Official website The Bob Marley Foundation Bob Marley at Rollingstone Marley Elected one of the Greatest Songwriters BBC News, May 23, 2001 • Showcase: Bob Marley by James Estrin, The New York Times, May 18, 2009 Persondata NAME ALTERNATIVE NAMES SHORT DESCRIPTION DATE OF BIRTH PLACE OF BIRTH DATE OF DEATH Marley, Bob Marley, Robert Nesta Singer, songwriter, guitarist February 6, 1945 Nine Miles, Saint Ann Parish, Jamaica May 11, 1981 • • • •

Further reading
• Farley, Christopher (2007). Before the Legend: The Rise of Bob Marley, Amistad Press ISBN 0060539925


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PLACE OF DEATH Miami, Florida, U.S.

Bob Marley

Retrieved from "" Categories: Anti-apartheid activists, Cannabis culture, Deaths from skin cancer, English-language singers, Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winners, Jamaican male singers, Jamaican reggae musicians, Jamaican Rastafarians, Jamaican songwriters, Jamaican vegetarians, Jamaicans of English descent, Jamaicans of Scottish descent, Pan-Africanism, Performers of Rastafarian music, People from Wilmington, Delaware, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees, Shooting survivors, Cancer deaths in Florida, 1945 births, 1981 deaths This page was last modified on 22 May 2009, at 12:49 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers


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