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43 Years Ago Today: Bob Marley Dies Aged 36

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43 years ago today, on May 11th, 1981, legendary reggae singer and native Jamaican Bob Marley tragically passed away after a battle with skin cancer. He was just 36 years old, but Marley had become an icon already.

His album ‘Exodus,’ sold over 5 million copies worldwide. The album was released in June of 1977, just 4 years prior to the death of the legendary singer. ‘Exodus’ catapulted Marley into being one of the most famous singers in the world.

Posthumously, Marley has been decorated as one of the most accomplished singers of all time. He was granted a GRAMMY® Lifetime Achievement Award in 2001, as well as being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.

Marley was also posthumously welcomed into the ASCAP Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2010. He even has a star on the Hollywood walk of fame, which was unveiled also in 2001, 20 years after his death.

Marley’s contributions to music are simply incredible. He and the Wailers possessed a near-universally appreciated sound that broke down barriers when it was released, just as it does now.

The singer’s potent lyrics, mixed with the relentless jam of ‘The Wailers’ create a reggae sound that has truly never been replicated, before or since.

The singer tragically passed away at 36 years old at the Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida on May 11th, 1981.

43 years later, in 2024, a biopic film about Marley was released entitled ‘One Love.’ The film was nearly universally panned by critics, and universally adored by fans of the late great musician.

Even decades after his death, the potency of Bob Marley’s message of peace, and most importantly hope, continue to echo through many parts of the world.

For any artist, appreciation of your art to that broad of a spectrum of people, with the staying power of nearly five decades is simply all you dream about.

Marley’s impact has not slowed, in fact, may even be more influential today than when he died. Rest in peace, Bob Marley!

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