The King of Reggae

021Bob Marley was one of the most famous reggae singers in the world. He has written many different songs about many different things. He has inspired many people.

Bob Marley was born on February 6, 1945 in Trenchtown Jamaica. He died at 36 on May 11, 1981. He died of cancer, in one of his toes, that spread throughout his body. Because of his religious beliefs, he didn’t want to have his toe cut off before the cancer spread. I think it was a silly mistake on his part because if he didn’t follow that one belief he probably would still be alive today. He had 11 kids and two of them were adopted from his wife’s previous marriage. His wife’s name was Rita Marley. His father was white and his mother was black. Here is what he had to say about that:

“I don’t have prejudice against meself. My father was a white and my mother was black. Them call me a half-caste or whatever. Me don’t deh pon the black man’s side nor the white man’s side. Me deh pon God’s side, the one who create me and cause me to come from black and white.”

One of his most famous songs is called War. The lyrics came from a speech made by Haile Selassie I. Haile Selassie I was the Emperor of Ethiopia. He gave the speech at the United Nations. Bob Marley admired and looked up to Hailie Selassie I. Here are the lyrics:

Until the philosophy which holds one race superior / And another / Inferior / Is finally / And permanently / Discredited / And abandoned / Everywhere is war / Me say war

That until there no longer / First class and second class citizens of any nation / until the color of a man’s skin / Is of no more significance / than the color of his eyes / Me say war

That until the basic human rights / Are equally guaranteed to all / Without regard to race / Dis a war

That until that day / The dream of lasting peace / World citizenship / Rule of international morality / Will remain in but a fleeting illusion to be pursued / But never attained / Now everywhere is war / War

And until the ignoble and unhappy regimes / That hold our brothers in Angola / In Mozambique / South Africa / Sub-human bondage / Have been toppled / Utterly destroyed / Well everywhere is war / Me say war

War in the east / War in the west / War up north / War down south / War / War / Rumors of war / And until that day / The African continent / Will not know peace / We Africans will fight – we find it necessary / And we know we shall win / And we are confident / In the victory

Of good over evil / Good over evil, yeah! / Good over evil / Good over evil, yeah! / Good over evil / Good over evil, yeah!

Basically Bob Marley is trying to say that until there is no racism there will be war. He sang about what needs to improve in the world and he sang about slavery. He also sang about the how people that had been taken as slaves should be taken back to Africa.

While we were in Jamaica we went to the Bob Marley Museum.  The Bob Marley Museum is in Kingston, Jamaica. It is about his life. He was a multi-millionaire but he was so unmaterialistic that he bought a modest size house beside the people. The museum used to be his house. He loved soccer so he had a small soccer field in front of his house. Now the soccer field is the parking lot. He had his own recording studio in his house. He had a small garden with medicinal plants like aloe vera. We saw a replica of the hammock that he was lying down in when he got the news that Hailie Selassie I had died. We saw his bedroom and a replica of his first record shop. To stay fit he would sprint up his stairs three at a time. The steps up to his front door are marble. He had lots of solid gold and platinum records. He bought a BMW and to him BMW meant Bob Marley and the Wailers. He inspired my dad, mom and I to go to Jamaica. He still inspires people 33 years after his death.

 

Jamaica

Jamaica is a friendly and beautiful place. We stayed in Jamaica for three weeks. We met a lot of people and saw a lot of things.

Patois (pronounced, pat-wa) is the dialect that most Jamaicans speak. I got a name in patois it is “likle hulk” which means little Hulk. In Negril I went to the Bob Marley Birthday Bash. My first reggae concert was in Jamaica! Negril calls itself the “Capital of Casual”.  In Montego Bay, we fixed our sail which had ripped on the way to Jamaica. I gave my bike away to a Jamaican kid and I gave two toy cars and a toy airplane to another kid named Kiesh. Kiesh didn’t have any toys at all. We went to the Black River and we saw lots of crocodiles. I even got to hold one. We went on a river boat to see them. The swamp that we saw the crocodiles in is a fire swamp. Here is how the fires start. During a drought, the peat soil is exposed. It lets out methane gas and the gas heats up and that is what starts the fires. After the fire swamp we went to YS falls. YS falls are a series of small waterfalls that make natural pools that you can swim in. Two of the pools had fish in them. I swung from a 20 foot high rope swing into one of the pools.

I remember many things about Jamaica, but these are my favorite things that I remember about Jamaica:  I will never forget the Blue Mountains and the colorful buildings. I will never forget the beautiful plants and all of the smiles. I will never forget all of the wonderful tastes like soursop, orantique, jerk vegetables, patties, guava, passion fruit juice and jerk chicken. I will never forget the Jamaican accent.

I am glad that I got to see Jamaica!!

You can see all the photos of our Jamaican trip here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/easethemain/sets/72157640619355403/

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One Response to The King of Reggae

  1. tracy

    Love this post Dante! I hope to see Jamaica one of these days as well! xoxo

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