Written By: Jewels Alexandria
(5 Minute Read)
How many Bob Marley quotes do you notice on a regular? How many stories have you heard about Bob Marley and his compassion for people and his good energy? I once met a man named Kevin. He personally met Bob Marley, by accident. Not once but twice, two days in a row, in a hotel in Cleveland, Ohio. It was by chance he was with a friend who knew a friend, who knew Bob Marley. Upon meeting, he shook his hand and handed him is own “spliff,” to smoke himself. He described his presence as “electrifying” and carried himself with much respect which gave him a sense wellbeing. He invited the two up to his room where he was throwing a party and once there, exchanged conversation and invited him to a show he was performing the next evening. That was 1975. That year, Bob Marley and the Wailers were playing at the wonderful Agora Theater. It was the first year they played in Cleveland, Ohio. (Scene Magazine, 1975). Forty eight years later, Kevin tells this story for however the umpteenth time, but tells with such description it was like I was there with him. I could imagine the color of the walls, the smell of marijuana and could even hear the chatter of those around them. Thinking of the conversation gives me chills. To meet a legend like Bob Marley is something that some only dreamed of.
Bob Marley is one of those artist you don’t need to know all his music to know of his legacy. It’s splattered across every T-shirt, poster and written all over graffiti walls. From his pictures to his quotes, he is an artist the world will speak of clear into generations to come. To celebrate his legacy and the upcoming bio pic of his life, One Love; in the theaters February 14th, The Juke Joint would like to shine light on his character and two personal encounters from everyday people who have met him.
One reoccurring theme that is noted about Bob Marley is his powerful eye contact. “I felt that he was communicating directly with me when we were talking…” says Steve Carter, a DJ/musician who first met Bob Marley at The Music Hall in 1978, Houston, Texas. Not only did Carter meet Bob Marley but he also rocked out with the band before the show.
A year later while living in Baltimore, he met Marley again in DC at his hotel. Bob Marley recalled meeting him before, " “Ahhh, I remember”," said Bob Marley, when Steve asked if he remembered him from Houston. Bob Marley was a man of much integrity. Not only did his music preach of unity and love, he was the exact persona of his music. He made differences in peoples lives in the most sincerest and simplest ways and that truly goes on with most people. “…He acknowledged other people and it made me feel connected.” Marley also signed his autograph for Mr. Carter, (displayed here), for him to relive the times he met Marley, twice. Carter continues to play reggae sets today, stating, "...played Marley songs in every show. His presence is STILL here and powerful."
They say you don't want to meet your idols. For there is a possibility they turn out to be the exact opposite of who you imagined in your mind. But this is not the case for most people who have met Bob Marley. And the world has plenty of people who are just like this. It just Bob Marley happened to be famous.
February 5, 2024