Another Side of Bob Marley: Ziggy Takes Us Inside the Family Archives

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Portrait of the Legend

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Ziggy Marley knows his family would have  done something big to mark his dad Bob’s 75th birthday. “Since he’s not here, we’re going to celebrate anyway,” says Ziggy, who curated a new book, Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, full of rare photos of the singer taken between 1976 and 1980 — a period in which he became a global phenomenon, toured the world, and spent time in London after an attempt on his life. Ziggy says he wanted to show “a side of the legend you don’t see,” through “real-life experiences,” including Marley hanging with his children and old friends at 56 Hope Road in Kingston, Jamaica, and playing in pickup soccer games. “People connect to him on a level beyond the music,” adds Ziggy, who recently released an album of children’s music, More Family Time. “They say, ‘He’s a friend of mine, he’s a brother of mine.’ People see him as someone who they could be close to — and he would be willing to be close to them, too.”

FIND THE BOOK

© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Melody Maker in Training

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Ziggy and his father at a soundcheck for the second annual Reggae Sunsplash, an all-star reggae festival held in Montego Bay, Jamaica, in the summer of 1979. “I’m just soaking it in,” Ziggy says. “I remember certain things about that trip. That’s the first time I found out what a sleeping policeman was. We would go over these bumps, and they would say ‘We’re going over the sleeping policemen.’ I asked my father, ‘What’s a sleeping policeman?’ They were the bumps to slow down the cars.”

Peter Murphy/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

People Get Ready

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Ziggy likes this 1976 image of his father because “you can see the spots on his face. You see the real guy. You can see what he’s been through on his face, but he’s still cool and still confident. I think he’s ready to take over the world.”

David Burnett/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Let Him Goal

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Bob takes a break from recording Exodus in March 1977 to play soccer at London’s Battersea Park. “Whenever he had downtime, he would put together [a game],” Ziggy says. “These were guys from Island Records. He just loved to play. He tried to play anywhere, anytime, whether it be in the dressing room or a pick-up game.”

Adrian Boot/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Positive Vibration

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Marley at the “Is This Love” music video shoot at London’s Keskidee Arts Centre, 1978. “My father loved children,” says Ziggy. “He has that childlike energy to him, also. You can see his childlike innocence, and you can see how relatable he is to the children. There’s just a purity of innocence. I like that a lot here.”

Adrian Boot/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Babylon by Bus

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Hanging out before sound check in the Netherlands in May 1977. “This is a side of the legend you don’t see,” says Ziggy. “This is showing the real-life experiences that he’s having. It’s not just about being onstage. It’s hard work. This is him in that place: ‘Yeah, I’m here, I’m not in the limelight, but I’m getting ready to be in the limelight.’ This is what you don’t see.”

David Burnett/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Catch a Fire

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Marley smoking a chalice with Wailers percussionist Alvin “Seeco” Patterson at home in Kingston in 1979. “Seeco was a good friend from the early, early days,” says Ziggy. “They’re having fun, making jokes. This is just them chilling, like bros, you know? That’s the point of the book, to show that realness.”

Adrian Boot/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Sun is Shining

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Marley’s son Stephen watches his dad and friends play dominos at 56 Hope Road. “We wanted to show Bob’s world,” says Ziggy. “We weren’t well-kept kids. We were, like, rough kids. Look at him; his shirt is off. Some people think when Bob was around, he had a lot of money. That’s not how we were. This is how we grew up. Bob was down to earth.”

Neville Garrick/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Kingston to London

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

Backup singers Judy Mowatt, Rita Marley, and Marcia Griffiths — the I-Threes — in London in June 1980. “You can see the crowd pushed up against this body of water,” Ziggy says.

Adrian Boot/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

bob marley portrait of a legend book reggae

Natural Mystic

October 14, 2020, 8:00am

At London’s Rainbow Theatre on the Exodus tour in 1977. Ziggy says his father had “two sides: the normal human being, and this guy, the spiritual force. You can see him being otherworldly.”

FIND THE BOOK

Peter Murphy/© Bob Marley: Portrait of the Legend, curated by Ziggy Marley, Rizzoli New York, 2020

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