A report by Duke Oreva for Pulse.
When Bob Marley passed away on May 11, 1981, he had already gained world recognition by spreading the message of universal love and freedom through his music.
Such was the truthfulness of Bob Marley’s message that it attracted an unbelievable number of 120,000 people to his Milan, Italy, concert in June 27, 1980.
And since that time, his message has continued to spread around the world just like he foresaw. As a matter of fact, there’s arguably no country in the world where the name, Bob Marley, is not a household name.
However, there are some certain things about the reggae maestro that seem unknown to most people. And it’s not because they are obscured, it’s just that his name and music have a way of pushing every other thing behind the scene.
Here are five surprising things you probably didn’t know about Bob Maley
1. Bob Marley started reading palms at the age of four
Palm reading is one of the oldest methods of telling the future. It reveals individual personality, character traits, as well as foretelling the future through the study of the shape, size and lines of the hands and fingers.
To simply put it, it is the art of reading the lines of destiny.
However, little Bob was discouvered at the age of four to be gifted with the art of palmistry. And when his mother, Cedella, heard it for the first from relatives and neighbours, she took it as a joke; but was later shaken with surprise when she found out.
It said that later on when Bob Marley was a lot older and returned to Kingston, a woman asked him to read her palm. He would reply her by saying “I’m not reading no more hand, I’m singing now.”
2. Bob Marley performed on stage with bullet wounds two days after he was shot
On 3 December 1976, two days before “Smile Jamaica”, a free concert organised by the Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley in an attempt to ease tension between two warring political groups, Bob Marley was shot by unknown gunmen.
Nonetheless, the concert of 80,000 crowds proceeded with injured Bob Marley performing on stage as scheduled. He was assisted by one Zap Pow group, as his band members, “The Wailers,” were nowhere to be found due to the tension that preceded the event.
It is said that after the concert he was asked why he decided to perform despite the risks of health complications; Marley would respond by saying, “The people who are trying to make this world worse aren’t taking a day off, how can I?”
3. Bob Marley had eleven children with seven different mothers
The reggae maestro was not only an authority on stage, he was also a god when it comes to romance.
This was the reason he managed to befriend some of the most elite women of his time like Anita Belnavis, a Caribbean table-tennis champion, mother of Ky-Mani Marley. And Cindy Breakspeare, crowned Miss World, 1976, mother of Damien Marley.
However, of the 11 children consisting of four girls and seven boys, two of those are Rita’s children Bob Marley adopted and raised as his own when he married her at the age of 21 years. He would also adopt the girl as his own when Rita had an affair outside wedlock. Legendary minds, yeah?
Here are the names of Bob Marley’s children: Sharon Marley, Cedella Marley, Karen Marley, Stephanie Marley, Ziggy Marley, Stephen Marley, Robbie Marley, Rohan Marley, Julian Marley, Ky-mani Maley, and Damien Marley.
It is important to note that five of his seven boys are counted among the refined musicians in the world.
4. Bob Marley’s dreadlocks was shaved off few weeks before he passed away
Although it was against Bob Marley’s belief, as a Rastafarian, to shave his hair, the suffering he went through due to skin cancer before passing on forced him to do otherwise.
It is said that during his last days, he became too pale and weak that he needed to let go of his dreaded locks.
5. He is one of the world’s bestselling artist of all time
With sales of over 200 million records worldwide, Bob Marley did not only distinguish himself as more than just a musician, he is also ranked among the world bestselling artist of all time.
“Exodus,” which was his ninth studio album stayed on the British album charts for 56 consecutive weeks. It included four UK hit singles: “Exodus”, “Waiting in Vain”, “Jamming”, and “One Love. And the greatest hits album, Legend, was released in 1984, three years after Bob Marley passed away.