Bob Marley and the Wailers performing at Paul's Mall folk club on Boylston Street, July 1973. Photo by Clif Garboden.
The founding father of reggae spread his music and man seed far and wide before passing away at age 36, and throughout the world, his name implies love more accurately than that of ‘God.' BOB MARLEY fathered 10-plus children of several different women, and you're hard-pressed to find pics of him without a fat joint between his big, juicy lips. If he were still around, I'd be honored to share a fish-lipped spliff with Marley -- for Robert Nesta was a Rasta pimp, and every ska or reggae band you've ever heard has Jah'highness to thank for skankin' the off-beat genres onto the charts.
Marley died in a Miami hospital from a toe-injury turned cancerous 30 years ago today, but fortunately for us a few of his boys have followed in the footsteps of their natty-dread daddy. Ziggy, Stephen and Damian each have their own take on reggae: Damian's hip-hop flow is rebel music to educate and inspire kinship (most recent release: Distant Relatives, 2010, a collaboration with Nas); Stephen's songs play to the R&B roots of ska and rocksteady, as he even adapts the blues classic ‘Lonely Avenue' for his 2007 debut Mind Control; and Ziggy, whose words sometimes sound further from Patois and more like those of Michael Franti, is best known for simplifying Rasta by cutting to the chase with his album/track Love Is My Religion (2006).
And since they each tour regularly, there are now three times as many chances to catch a Marley on stage -- spreading their father's message of thanks and praise for Jamaican heritage, African roots, the destruction of Babylon, kinky reggae, and above all else -- One Love.
Video: "Love Is My Religion" - Ziggy Marley