Names of musical stars have had their legendary and legacy perpetuated by their off-springs courting the question, ‘is being a musician hereditary?’
The other discovery is that this seems to be very common with reggae artists than it is with the other genres.
Starting with the King of Reggae himself, Robert Nesta Marley shortened to Bob Marley started singing with three youthful friends in the name of Peter Herbert Macintosh, shortened to Peter Tosh and Bunny Livingstone Wailer. He sang alongside his wife Rita Anderson Marley and after his death in 1981 his wife has accomplished so much that in 1996 the Jamaican government awarded her the Order of Distinction for her outstanding works and accomplishments.
Bob’s children have done what no musical family has achieved in the world. Sharon Marley born on November 23, 1964, the big sister of the family also became the eldest of the Melody Makers. Karen Marley, second daughter of Bob Marley, although not directly into music besides being a property developer also works as an assistant designer for Catch a Fire Clothing and Tuff Gong Clothing, firms owned by her siblings that provide for the musicians nonetheless. Rohan Marley, a son of Bob Marley, runs the Tuff Gong Clothing Company.
By the way, Bob Marley, whose nickname was “the Gong”, founded Tuff Gong International in 1965. He gave it its colorful name because he claimed that one had to be “Tuff” to survive in music in Jamaica.”
Stephen Marley is one of Rita’s two sons regarded as one of the most talented of Bob’s children.
Of course he started as a member of the celebrated Marley sibling group ‘The Melody Makers’ since the age of seven. But he is the Grammy winning producer, singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. He is regarded as ‘the driving creative force behind the music of his siblings. Stephen’s production, performance and writing credits has already earned him two Grammys, giving him a total of five, more than any other reggae artist in history.
Hunkered down in the studio he has served as the secret weapon behind both of younger brother Damian Junior Gong Marley’s past two Grammy winners as well as behind the Ghetto Youths International and Tuff Gong imprints.
Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley is the most experimental Marley and with his Brother Stephen’s influence he has showcased a unique gift for blending hard-hitting reality rhymes and an uncommonly eclectic musicality with a classic reggae sensibility at its core and run through with streams of hip-hop, r&b and dancehall.
Ziggy Marley the leading Marley in the wake of his 2006 album Love Is My Religion earned his fourth Grammy Award. He founded U.R.G.E. (Unlimited Resources Giving Enlightenment), a non-profit organization that benefits a wide range of charitable children’s causes in Jamaica and other developing nations.
Stephanie Marley one of the most educated of the Marley girls successfully completing her A ‘Levels in Social Studies and Psychology in London before her studies in Psychology, at The University of Western Ontario, Canada. She is now the Managing Director of the Bob Marley Foundation, Bob Marley Museum, Tuff Gong International, Tuff Gong Recording, URGE and the Rita Marley Foundation.
Ky-mani Marley with an East African name meaning Adventurous Traveler started with soccer before getting musical while Julian Marley thought music is life, life is music and both are blessings from above. He owns Uprising Band.
The other one Cedella Marley has had a life always rooted in music and was a Melody Maker. She is now the C.E.O. of Tuff Gong International.
Peter Tosh’s son Andrew has also taken over from the fallen legendary father.
Then there is Morgan Heritage a reggae band formed by five children of reggae artist Denroy Morgan that include Una Morgan, Roy “Gramps” Morgan, Peter Morgan, Nakhamyah “Lukes” Morgan and Memo “Mr. Mojo” Morgan.
Then there is Joseph ‘Culture’ Hill who suddenly became ill while on tour in Europe and passed away in Berlin Germany on August 19, 2006. His son Kenyatta who at that time was his audio engineer sang lead vocals as a tribute to his father completing the tour in the process.
Back home in Malawi we have legendary Patrick Simakweli whose son Sam Simakweli is the band leader of Lucious Banda’s Zembani Band.
Robert Fumulani’s sons Msamude the late, Anjiru, and Chizondi and Robert’s young brother Arnold Fumulani’s sons Gift the late and Moda are carrying on the legacy.
Now, is being a musician something that descends by inheritance?