We have heard folktales of legends that passed on and their legacies have remained. So is the story of the Jamaican legend; he will forever live in our hearts. Bob Marley passed away leaving a legacy that cannot be trashed. His legacy is inscribed on metallic objects. Till this moment, the validity of his sermonic songs cannot be overrated. Even after three decades, his songs still appear at the very top of the playlists of many youths.
“Money can’t buy life”, were the last words of this legend to his Son Ziggy, as the 36-year-old Jamaican passed away on May 11, 1981. Bob Marley died at the Cedars of Lebanon Hospital in Miami, USA (now University of Miami Hospital).
Prior to that, The reggae Icon had been diagnosed with cancer. The doctors had found out that he had a type of malignant melanoma under the nail of his toe. Bob turned down the advice of the doctors after he was told that the toe needed to be amputated. Bob remained strong at heart while he struggled with the cancer. At some point, he collapsed while jogging in Central Park on his world tour. It was at the hospital he learned that the cancer had spread to his brain and had taken over his body.
It’s been 38 years since death took a music sermonizer from us. It is not wrong to say his legacy, music, and quotes are still fresh in our memories. During his lifetime, the icon used his song as a tool to fight societal ills. Furthermore, he endeavored to use it as a means to unite the human race.
Bob Marley was named ‘Robert Nesta Marley’ at birth. He had an ironic bright life at the start of his life. He was born in the ghettos of Kingston, Jamaica, on 6th of February, 1945. His father was Norman Marley; a British Naval Captain sent to the West Indies during the Second World War.
Bob had little western education, as he dropped out at age 14 to become an apprentice welder. Not long after he started, he quit being an apprentice to team up with Peter Tosh, whom he had met just recently. Together, they released a single, ‘Simmer Down’. This track enjoyed considerable airplay on local radio.
Later in 1964, Bob and Tosh formed The Wailing Wailers. Also in the group were Junior Braithwaite, Bunny Livingstone Wailer, Judy Mowatt, Beverly Kelso, Rita Anderson (who became his wife in 1966) and Marcia Griffith (the 1-Three). Through their series of performance, the group became popular.
The Wailers was signed on by Chris Blackwell’s Island Records in 1972. In 1973, they came out with their debut album; Catch a Fire. The album launched the group into stardom. However, the group had to split after alleging that Bob took a domineering role while on tour.
On the 10th of February, 1966, Robert Nesta ‘Bob’ Marley got married to Anderson Marley (formerly Rita Anderson) in Kingston, Jamaica. He had three children with Anderson. Bob adopted two children from Rita’s previous marriage and several others with different women. Be it as it may, the Bob Marley official website acknowledges eleven children.
Thirty-eight years and still counting, his spirit still lives among us. His immense contribution lit the world, helping us to see the illuminating light of love between races. Bob Marley’s contributions to music increased the recognition of Jamaican music and made him a global figure in popular culture for so long.
Continue to Rest Legend.
Robert Nesta Marley, (6 February 1945 – 11 May 1981).
Jamaican Singer, Songwriter, and Pioneer of Reggae.