Bob Marley: Musician (Black Americans of Achievement) by Sherry Beck Paprocki

By Sherry Beck Paprocki

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3 Surviving in Trench Town Cedella Marley and Taddy Livingston were able to get government housing at 19 Second Street in Trench Town in 1957. They were soon joined by her son, who by then preferred the name Bob to his childhood name of Nesta. Finding the money to pay Bob’s private school tuition always presented a challenge, but one that Cedella willingly met each term. “I never have to beg nobody or borrow from nobody,” she proudly recalled. I could pay his fee, then save again to buy his shoes.

Rastas metaphorically liken their situation in Jamaica to the captivity of the Old Testament Jews in Babylon. ) Jamaica is thus literally regarded as hell on earth; Ethiopia is the lost promised land to which the faithful aspire to return; and Zion (a biblical name for the kingdom of Israel) is the eternal land of redemption and rest awaiting the faithful The Rasta Influence DID YOU KNOW? Bob Marley’s religion, Rastafari, affected his hairstyle and his lifestyle. Marley’s renowned dreadlocks were grown in response to his dedication to the Rastafarian faith, which prohibits the combing or cutting of hair.

When Haile Selassie’s plane touched down in Kingston on April 21, 1966, more than 100,000 of the brethren awaited him on the tarmac. The size and intensity of the gathering startled the emperor no less than it did the Jamaican government; initially, an overwhelmed Selassie could not be persuaded to leave his jet, and he wept when he emerged. The reception accorded the emperor also alerted the government that this grassroots, hill-country religion was not, as they had long hoped, dying out. The government soon mounted one of its periodic crackdowns on the Rastas, culminating in the bulldozing of the Back O’ the Wall shantytown, with its many Rasta enclaves, in the summer of 1966.

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