Fun Facts: Bob Marley

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Bob Marley

Bob Marley was born Robert Nesta Marley on February 6, 1945. Bob was born to Cedella Marley when she was 18. Bob’s early life was spent in rural community of Nine Miles, nestled in the mountainous terrain of the parish of St. Ann. Residents of Nine Miles have preserved many customs derived from their African ancestry especially the art of storytelling as a means of sharing the past and time-tested traditions that are oftentimes overlooked in official historical sources. The proverbs, fables and various chores associated with rural life that were inherent to Bob’s childhood would provide a deeper cultural context and an aura of mysticism to his adult songwriting.

  1. Bob Marley served as a world ambassador for reggae music and sold more than 20 million records throughout his career—making him the first international superstar to emerge from the so-called Third World.
  2. A group of gunmen attacked Marley and the Wailers while they were rehearsing on the night of December 3, 1976, two days before a planned concert in Kingston’s National Heroes Park. One bullet struck Marley in the sternum and the bicep, and another hit his wife, Rita, in the head. Fortunately, the Marleys were not severely injured, but manager Don Taylor was not as fortunate. Despite the attack and after much deliberation, Marley still played at the show.

  1. When Bob left school at 14 years old Cedella Malcolm found him a position as a welder’s apprentice, which he reluctantly accepted. After a short time on the job a tiny steel splinter became embedded in Bob’s eye. Following that incident, Bob promptly quit welding and solely focused on his musical pursuits.
  2. Bob Marley was a fanatic football (soccer) player and fan. Bob Marley simply loved kicking a ball. About every single day when on tour or in the recording studio. He also loved watching soccer on tv. His favourite team was Santos Futebol Clube ( Brazil ). His favourite player was Edson Arantes do Nascimento, world famous as Pele, who began playing for Santos at age 15.
  3. The first official words uttered in Zimbabwe, following the raising of the new nation’s flag, were, “Ladies and gentlemen, Bob Marley and The Wailers” in the Independence day Celebration in April 1980.
  4. Bob Marley smoked marijuana because he practiced the Rastafarian religion, wherein the use of “ganja” (the Rastafarian term for marijuana, taken from an old Sanskrit word) is a holy sacrament. Bob Marley did not use cannabis recreationally, and did not see its use as a casual matter. He viewed marijuana as a holy rite, much as Catholics view Holy Communion or some Native Americans view ceremonial usage of peyote.

References:

Bob Marley – One Love
Bob Marley – Stir It Up
Bob Marley Official Site
Bob Marley – Biography
Bob Marley Soccer Player: Football is Freedom
Bob Marley Concerts
Why Bob Marley Smoke Marijuana

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