July 26, 2017

"Because of Bob’s mixed blood, he was often teased as 'the little yellow boy' or 'the German boy.' He was described as shy, resourceful, and clever."

"In 1957, Marley and his mother moved to Kingston, settling in a dense, ramshackle neighborhood referred to as Trench Town. Marley fell in with a crowd that dreamed of making music. He formed a group with Neville (Bunny Wailer) Livingston, Peter Tosh, Beverley Kelso, and Junior Braithwaite. They eventually called themselves the Wailers, and their sound fused American-style soul harmonies with the island’s jumpy ska rhythms. Under the guidance of Joe Higgs, a singer and producer, the Wailers were a local sensation by the mid-sixties. But island stardom brought little financial security. After moving briefly to Wilmington, Delaware, where his mother had relocated, Marley returned to the Wailers in 1969, just in time for a revolution in Jamaican music: the jolting, horn-inflected styles of ska and rocksteady were slowing down. Reggae was the new craze."

From "Manufacturing Bob Marley/A new oral history shows just how much of his story is up for grabs," an article in The New Yorker (about this book, "So Much Things to Say: The Oral History of Bob Marley").

There are many interesting things in that article, but the most interesting thing to me was that Bob Marley lived in Wilmington, Delaware in the 1960s. I look up his address — 2312 Tatnall Street — and find it in Google Street View:



Google calculates how far that was from where I lived — 5.5 miles. I left in 1964, and he didn't arrive until 1965.

17 comments:

rhhardin said...

Google calculates how far that was from where I lived — 5.5 miles. I left in 1964, and he didn't arrive until 1965.

I grew up 2 miles from Anne Hathaway, if you overlook her not being born yet.

YoungHegelian said...

"High Yellow" is not exactly a term that would spring to my mind about Bob Marley. But, now that it gets pointed out, I can see how his Jamaican neighbors might say that. Marley's definitely the lightest-skinned of this crew.

I'm not a follower of reggae, so I didn't know he was of Syrian/Sephardic extraction on his father's side.

Bob Ellison said...

Many rivers to cross.

Be said...

I'm curious about the term "Oral History." What a Weird Term for a currently published, hardbound Book.

Ann Althouse said...

Oral history = the text of many, many interviews.

Danno said...

Twelve mile circle children, correct?

David said...

my understanding was that Marley was related to the white (some mulatto) Marley family who had been plantation owners and some still were. Is this now discredited? I seem to recall photos that showed quite a resemblance.

Anyhow he was quite a talent. I'll stick to his music.

Meade said...

His name wasn't Bob, but the first person to walk on the moon was completing his aeronautical engineering degree at the university in the town where, in the very same year, I was born and partly raised. 40 years later, long after he came back from the moon and in a different town in a different state, he and I were neighbors again, living less than a mile from each other. I would often see him out walking with his wife on the country roads where I biked.

That was also when Justice Potter Stewart lived just across road from me. Mr. Stewart's NYT was frequently misdelivered to my driveway and I would pick it up, cross the road, and put it in his mailbox even though I knew it was full of fake news.

Meade said...

I should've named my kid Potter Armstrong Meade.

Paul Zrimsek said...

"Angst" is German for "dread", mon.

Ralph L said...

Potter Armstrong Meade
I thought Marley was the potter. Looking at the right side of his house, the mason must have been on pot.

Ralph L said...

Looking at YoungHegelian's link, almost all the google images are in B&W or tinted, few in natural color.

Curious George said...

"Google calculates how far that was from where I lived — 5.5 miles. I left in 1964, and he didn't arrive until 1965."

I lived two blocks from Walter Payton's first house in Arlington Hts, IL. Of course he wasn't living there at the time, having moved to Barrington once he signed his first BIG contract.

Meade said...

I almost forgot: Peter Frampton also lived in that neighborhood. I'd sometimes run into him at the hardware store and at Krogers.

So then I guess I could've named my kid Potter Frampton Armstrong Meade.

A to the C said...

My wife is sick of hearing me mention this, but I doubt she's reading this so here goes:
I attended the same high school as Steve Martin, Lenny Dykstra, and US Navy SEAL / posthumous Medal Of Honor recepient Michael Monsoor.
Also, I once shared an elevator in Frankfurt, Germany, with John Lithgow. He's very tall.

Meade said...

Those are some great brushes with greatness, A to the C. Hard to get any more heroic than war hero, Michael Monsoor.

A to the C said...

Meade -- Very true. I've shed a tear or two reading his story.