As the annual birthday bash of the legend that is Bob Marley gets underway we look at some of the key cultural sights dedicated to the reggae hero. Born on 6 February 1945, today would have been Bob Marley’s 69th birthday.
Kingston: Bob Marley Statue
Bob Marley was born in the village of Nine Mile in Jamaica’s largest parish of Saint Ann on 6 February 1945. Curiously Saint Ann has proven to be something of a reggae powerhouse, with performers Shabba Ranks, Burning Spear and Floyd Lloyd also hailing from the same area! Jamaica’s capital city of Kingston hosts his statue in commemoration, on Arthur Wint Drive beside the national stadium.
Cleveland, Ohio: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
Bob Marley was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 1994 in the US state of Cleveland. Browse the fascinating museum which is currently celebrating Black History month throughout February.
Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles: Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
In February 2001 Bob Marley was finally awarded his own star on the fabled Hollywood Walk of Fame, which receives more than 10 million visitors every year. It’s particularly poignant as Marley passed away just a few months later on 11 May 1981 in Miami, aged just 36.
Ridgmount Gardens, London: Marley’s first UK residence
In 2006 a blue plaque was unveiled at the Victorian Flat 4 Ridgmount Gardens in London’s plush Bloomsbury – which Marley made his home in 1972 when the Wailers were establishing themselves.
Church Avenue, New York: Street naming
Brooklyn in the US also honoured Bob Marley in 2006 with a renaming of a section of Church Avenue to “Bob Marley Boulevard”.
Serbia: Bob Marley statue
The tiny village of Banatski Sokolac in the very eastern reaches of Serbia unveiled its very own monument to the reggae legend, in the form of a commemorative statue.
Jamaica: Bob Marley Museum
56 Hope Road in Kingston, Jamaica, is home to the original Bob Marley Museum, which is an absolute must-visit for all aficionados. This wooden house dates back to the colonial era and was where Marley both lived and recorded between 1975 and his death in 1981. Much of the house remains untouched in honour of Marley and which is Kingston’s most visited tourist site.
Nine Mile: Bob Marley’s Mausoleum
Bob Marley is laid to rest in the village of his birth; Nine Mile, which is nestled within Jamaica’s central mountains. Many travellers make the pilgrimage up to the Bob Marley Mausoleum, where the great man is buried. His body was buried with his beloved guitar in a tall marble tomb.
Which is your favourite Bob Marley song?
One of my top five is definitely Exodus which was recorded in London, following an assassination attempt on Bob Marley’s life in 1976. Although the YouTube video dates back to 1979, it still sounds (and looks) incredible. Incidentally, the Exodus album was named the Album of the Century in 1999 by Time Magazine.
Image credit: Avda CC ASA 3.0