Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Artistes support Bob's earthday

Thirty-one years after his death, the music industry is still, rightfully, paying respect to the impact of reggae legend Bob Marley.

Yesterday marked his 67th birthday and apart from the all-day birthday celebrations at the 56 Old Hope Road Bob Marley Museum, there has been much made of paying tribute to the man, again, rightfully so.

On Saturday, LIME sponsored a Trench Town concert that ended in the wee hours of the morning at the Vin Lawrence Park in the St Andrew community.

As is now customary, the Marley family came together to close that show. Not before, however, Mr Myers, Brian Gold, Aaron Silk, Tinga Stewart, Nesbeth, Christopher Ellis, T.O.K., Romain Virgo, Wayne Marshall, Bugle, Fambo, Bounty Killer, Protoje, Popcaan, Junior Reid, Jah Cure, Capleton and Tarrus Riley paid their respects to the legend.

The following day, Sunday, Digicel, did the same.

They too had a slew of artistes who were not shy in declaring the importance of Marley.

Virgo was again present, as were Uprising Roots, Chronixx, Alaine, Protoje, Jermaine Edwards, and Judy Mowatt.

All accredited themselves well.

Yesterday, the party started early. At 5 a.m. the sounds of Nyahbingi drumming were already piercing the air, before the Ethiopian Orthodox Church blessed the place Bob once called home.

Bob's 67th birthday cake was cut and at press time a jam session in honour of the legend was threatening to go until morning.

The intelligencia was not to be left out either, as yesterday The University of Technology unveiled a sculpture depicting the late reggae icon at its Papine campus in St Andrew.

The piece, which has been erected in the institution's Caribbean Sculpture Park, was designed by Russian sculptor Gregory Pototsky and presented as a gift to the institution and to Jamaica.

A second sculpture, dubbed: 'People's Organism', designed by Jamaican artist and Edna Manley College for the Visual and Performing Arts alumnus Warren Buckle was also unveiled.

Bob Marley was born on February 6, 1945, in Nine Miles, St Ann, and died on May 11, 1981, in Miami, United States.

It is the predominantly roots reggae Island/Tuff Gong albums which have made Marley a legend, even though he started with ska. After Catch A Fire came Burnin (1973), Natty Dread (1974), Rastaman Vibration (1976), Exodus (1977), Kaya (1978), Survival (1979), Uprising (1980) and Confrontation (1983). Live! (1975) and Babylon By Bus (1978) are the official live sets of the 1970s.

Legend, released in 1984, is a 'best of' Marley compilation which officially went diamond in 2009, 18 years after Nielsen SoundScan officially started tracking sales. It was the 17th album to officially move 10 million units.

Now, for the week of February 11, Marley father and son are in the Billboard top five reggae albums, Stephen at three with Revelation Part 1: The Root of Life, and Bob at number four with Live Forever.

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