Knowing Bob Marley


2011051120190414 (R2)Originally broadcast to mark the anniversary of Bob Marley's death, five of his closest friends and colleagues share their personal experiences of the man they knew.

Knowing Bob Marley features intimate and revealing interviews that provide a revealing insight into the experiences that shaped the man who became the third world's first superstar.

Recorded exclusively for this programme Island Records founder Chris Blackwell, former girlfriend Esther Anderson, lawyer Diane Jobson, backing singer Marcia Griffith and Wailers guitarist Junior Marvin - all tell their story of the Bob Marley they knew best.

The programme reveals how the Jamaica he grew up in, with high unemployment, plus race and class divides, shaped him. We chart his musical rise from follower of trends such as the Rude Boy movement, to a reluctant leader of fellow musicians as he spread his reggae rhythm and message across the world.

Those close to Bob also reveal the circumstances of his death, which started with a toe injury during a game of football and resulted in his passing at the age of 36, just four years later.

Bob Marley was born in 1945 to a white father and black mother, at a time of racial division in Jamaica. Bob lacked parental guidance as he grew up in Nine Mile, a rural part of St Ann's before moving to the Trench Town suburb of Kingston in his early teens. In the 60s, he found music during a decade where opportunities were limited. With his friends Peter Tosh and Bunny Livingston, Bob created hype around Jamaica as The Wailers, and in 1973 were signed to Island Records as Bob Marley & The Wailers. Over the next eight years Bob became an international superstar before his untimely death on 11th May 1981.

A special programme remembering Bob Marley.