I Fucking Love That Band #3 Bob Marley

Dave Keneston and Christopher Aycox conversed about their love of Bob Marley in the first international edition of I Fucking Love That Band. They expounded upon the many aspects of Bob’s music from political to romantic to spiritual. They confronted the commercialized caricature of dreads and ganja that has plagued Bob’s posthumous image, watering down his message and cartooning his legacy. Bob Marley has a special place in both Dave and Chris’s hearts, and they lay it all out there for the listeners.

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6 thoughts on “I Fucking Love That Band #3 Bob Marley

  1. Great interview guys! I was lucky enough to see Bob Marley in 1978 at an outdoor concert (Pittsfield , MA.-“Kaya” tour). To this day it remains #1 on my concert list & strongest religous/spiritual event..no doubt!

  2. Good job guys.

    I wanted to offer a little info about Bob Marley’s “weird” conversion to Christianity late in life. Dave correctly identified Rastafarianism as a rejection of the Christian belief system imposed on Jamaicans of African descent by their European oppressors. You are probably also aware that Rastafarians worship Haile Selassie, the former ruler of Ethiopia, as God incarnate (hence the “We know and we understand/Mighty God is a living man,” line in Get Up, Stand Up). Selassie was a political hero to people of African descent worldwide because Ethiopia was the only part of Africa that managed to avoid European colonization until the 1930’s, when Mussolini took over Italy and attacked them. Selassie went to the League of Nations, the pre-WWII precursor to the U.N. and made a legendary speech begging the world to help defend his country, to no avail (though, as Chris mentioned, the transcript of the speech inspired Marley’s lyrics to War).

    So anyway, Jamaicans kind of took Selassie’s rep as an African hero and ran with it, turning him into their own messianic alternative to Jesus, the living God Ras Tafaria. When Selassie found out about this later in life, he visited Jamaica to state in no uncertain terms that he was just a man, which was convincing to few Rastafarians. But he formed a personal relationship with Marley, who would spend time over the last years of his life in Ethiopia, learning more about its culture and religion.

    Ethiopia has its own unique Christian church, called the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, which is descended from what is called Coptic Christianity, which is a branch of Christianity that developed independently of European influence in North Africa prior to the canonization of the gospels and the formation of Christianity and the bible as we now know them. So essentially what happened is that Marley met Selassie and said, “You’re God. You’re the messiah of black people.” And Selassie said, “No, I’m just a guy. But I believe in the real Jesus, who is also black, and I am part of a church that Africans have been running themselves since before there was a Pope or Patriarch or an England or a United States.” And Bob Marley was like, “Whoa, I gotta check this out.” So he went to Ethiopia a number of times, became a massive donor to its government and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, and was eventually baptized shortly before his death.

    Hope that was interesting and/or informative. The podcast was fun to listen to.

    1. Matt that’s awesome. I knew about Coptic Christianity, but I didn’t know that’s what Bob converted to. It’s still a bit weird to me but at least I understand it better. As a historical figure, is it possible Jesus was black? Wouldn’t he have most likely looked like any other person of Middle Eastern descent?

      Also, I heard an interview with, I think Rita Marley where she said Selassie had a “Stigmata.” I don’t know, it often gets difficult to distinguish fact from legend when religion is involved. Peoples ability to analyze the world rationally can get skewed by their faith.

      Thanks for the history lesson!

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