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Timeline of a legend

Published:Friday | February 6, 2015 | 12:00 AM

1945: The Boy From Nine Miles

Robert Nesta Marley is born in Rhoden Hall, Nine Miles, St Ann, Jamaica, to Cedella Malcolm and Captain Norval Sinclair Marley.

1956-1958: Trench Town

Cedella Malcolm decides to move her family from the idyllic country farming village of Nine Miles to seek their fortune in the city of Kingston.

In Kingston, she makes a home with Thaddeus 'Toddy' Livingston and his son, Neville (Bunny Wailer), who Bob befriends. They end up settling in a government tenement yard housing project in Trench Town, a ghetto of indescribable poverty.

1962: The Wailing Wailers

17-year-old Bob Marley records the ska song, Judge Not for producer Leslie Kong at Coxson Musik City and receives £20. His name is misspelled on the label as 'Bob Morley', but Judge Not is a local hit. Later, he records One Cup of Coffee, Terror, and others, which also earn very little money for him.

Bob meets Peter McIntosh (Tosh), who has a similar passion for music. Together with Bunny Wailer, the three begin writing songs. They settle on the group name The Wailing Wailers.

Bob meets his future wife, Alfarita Anderson, at Coxson Dodd's studio rehearsals.

Bob also meets influential mentor and musical genius, Joe Higgs, who holds free music clinics for motivated youth at his home in West Kingston. Higgs takes the young Wailers under his wing, coaching them on guitar playing, songwriting and singing.

Bob Marley injures his eye with steel shards while working as a welder at his day job. He quits and does not return.

Bob's mother decides to emigrate from Kingston to the United States of America, making a new start with her sister's family in Wilmington, Delaware.

1964: Early Chart-Topping

The Wailing Wailers top the Jamaican singles charts for the first time, selling more than 80,000 copies of the ska song, Simmer Down. The Wailers perform to a packed house at the popular, historic Ward Theatre in Kingston, Jamaica.

1966: Family First

Twenty-one-year-old Robert Nesta Marley and 19-year-old Alfarita 'Rita' Constantia Anderson are married in Trench Town, Jamaica.

Bob Marley goes to Delaware to work and save money for his new family and for his hopeful music business.

His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia visits Jamaica invigorating the Rastafarian Movement. Bob dreams that a man in a coat and hat places a ring on his hand. Later, he tells his mother that, according to his dream, His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I has claimed him as his son. Bob realises that he is a child of Rastafari.

Bob, while living and working in Delaware, is called upon by the draft board for Vietnam. Instead of signing up, by the end of 1966, Bob leaves the United States and returns to Jamaica to continue his musical aspirations.

1967: Children of Rastafari

Bob fully immerses himself in the faith of Rastafari with the guidance of Mortimo 'Kumi' Planno, an elder and leader in the Rastafarian movement.

Cedella, Bob's and Rita's first child, is born. Bob and Rita return to his place of birth in St Ann, Jamaica, with their newborn daughter, where he settles down for a while before finally returning to Kingston.

1968: Rising Son

David, Bob's and Rita's first son, is born at their home in Trench Town. Bob helps to deliver his son.

1969: Production From 'Scratch'

Bob begins working with innovative producer Lee 'Scratch' Perry and, through him, meets the brothers Aston and Carly Barrett, who will later join Bob and the Wailers to play bass and drums.

1970: The Birth of Tuff Gong

Bob Marley founds the Tuff Gong record label. The Wailers' Soul Rebels album, produced by Lee 'Scratch' Perry, is released to success throughout the Caribbean.

1972: Bob Goes Global

Bob Marley meets Chris Blackwell, founder of Island Records, in London, after a period of time working with singer-songwriter Johnny Nash. Blackwell offers the Wailers their first major recording contract and worldwide exposure.

Bob and the group spend the next several months recording intensively in Jamaica and deliver the album Catch A Fire to Blackwell.

Bob's and Rita's third child, Stephen, is born in Wilmington, Delaware, USA.

Bob welcomes two more sons, Rohan and Robert.

1974: Upheaval and Evolution

Natty Dread is released.

Peter Tosh and Bunny Livingston part from The Wailers group. The I-Three join The Wailers as backup vocalists.

Eric Clapton's version of I Shot The Sheriff hits number one on the Billboard charts, helping to put reggae on the musical map.

1975: Roots, Rock, Reggae

Bob's toe is injured while he plays football in Trench Town.

The band plays its first gig as Bob Marley and the Wailers at the Lyceum Ballroom in London. This show is recorded and released later that year on the album called Live!

Bob Marley performs in Jamaica with the Jackson 5.

Bob's son, Julian, is born.

Bob performs in Kingston, Jamaica, with Stevie Wonder. All proceeds going to the Salvation Army School for the Blind. This will be remembered as the last show that brought the three original Wailers together on stage.

Natty Dread becomes Bob Marley's first album to show up on the US Billboard charts and ranks in at number 92.

No Woman, No Cry goes to number 22 on the UK Billboard Singles Chart.

1976: Assassination Attempt

Rastaman Vibration is released and becomes Bob's highest-charting Billboard album at Number 8 in the US and Number 15 in the UK. Bob agrees to hold a free concert in Kingston called Smile Jamaica. The show is created to heal political factions, lift the people's morale, and provide a sense of solidarity and peace in Jamaica.

On the night of December 3, an attempted assassination is made on Bob's life during rehearsals for the Smile Jamaica concert at 56 Hope Road in Kingston, Jamaica. A bullet grazes Bob's chest, ending up in his left arm. Bob's wife, Rita, is shot in the head, and his manager, Don Taylor, suffers gunshot wounds to his body. The assailants are never officially identified.

Despite the threat on their lives two days earlier, Bob and Rita Marley perform onstage in the Smile Jamaica concert, displaying visible wounds and bandages from the assassination attempt.

Bob then goes on a self-imposed exile, first stopping in Nassau, Bahamas, before heading to London, England. The exile lasts 18 months.

Bob Marley and the Wailers are named Band of the Year by Rolling Stone Magazine. Bob appears on the cover and is featured in a historic series of photos taken by Annie Leibovitz.

Bob's son, Kymani, is born.

1977: Revolution and Recovery

While in England, Bob writes and records songs for his albums Exodus and Kaya. Bob sends for rival Jamaican political activists, Claudie Massop, Tony Welch and 'Tek Life' for a meeting in London to discuss the peace efforts in Jamaica, which include the staging of the 'One Love' peace concert to end political division.

Exodus is released.

Bob Marley and the Wailers tour Europe to great reviews and international acclaim.

Bob's right toe becomes injured a second time while playing football in Paris with a group of French journalists. Bob goes to Miami to recover and get a second opinion on his injured toe.

1978: Activism Recognised

The One Love Peace Concert is held at The National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica. During Jamming, Marley joins the hands of political rivals Michael Manley and Edward Seaga in an unforgettable and historic moment. The United Nations awards Bob Marley the Third World Peace Medal in New York City.

Kaya is released, containing the popular hit singles Is This Love and Satisfy My Soul. Babylon by Bus is released.

Bob's son, Damian, is born.

Bob makes a pilgrimage to Ethiopia.

1979: Covering The Globe

Bob builds himself a professional recording studio, Tuff Gong Studios, and a record manufacturing plant, becoming the first artist in Jamaica to not only own his own studio, but also manufacture his own records. Bob and Rita help their children form The Melody Makers (Sharon, Cedella, Ziggy and Stephen). He writes and plays guitar on their first single released in Jamaica, Children Playing in the Streets.

Survival is released which includes the songs Africa Unite and Zimbabwe. Bob Marley and the Wailers play at Harvard Stadium in Boston, Massachusetts, for the Amandla festival in support of southern Africa's freedom fighters.

Bob Marley and the Wailers perform once at Jamaica's famous Reggae Sunsplash in Montego Bay.

Bob Marley and the Wailers begin a gruelling seven-week world tour in support of the album Survival.

1980: A Higher Place

Bob Marley and the Wailers perform to a record-breaking 100,000 fans in Milan; there were more in attendance than the Pope had the week before.

Zimbabwe gains its independence from England. Bob is invited to headline the Independence Day celebrations in Harare, Zimbabwe. He spends his own money to bring lights and stage equipment, as Zimbabwe hasn't hosted a live concert in more than 20 years.

Uprising is released, and includes the worldwide hit Could You Be Loved.

Bob collapses while jogging in Central Park and a brain tumour is diagnosed. Still, he continues to the next show venue. He chooses to be baptised in the Ethiopian Orthodox tradition and is given the name Berhane Selassie, which means 'Light of the Trinity'.

Bob Marley and the Wailers play their last concert in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, at the Stanley Theater, with a phenomenal and unforgettable performance by Bob that includes two encores.

The Uprising tour is cancelled. Bob flies to Miami, and then later to Germany, to begin a course of cancer treatments.

1981: Jah Live

Friends and family go to Germany to celebrate Bob's 36th birthday. He is awarded Jamaica's third highest honour, the Order of Merit.

Bob returns from Germany on a chartered plane and is admitted to Miami Cedars Sinai Hospital. Surrounded by family, his physical form passes from this Earth.

Robert Nesta Marley's state funeral is held at Jamaica's National Arena in Kingston and concluded in Nine Miles.

1984: Legendary

Legend, Bob Marley's greatest hits album is released. Presently, Legend remains a long-term resident of many Billboard chart listings.

1990: Birthday Bash

February 6, Bob's birthday, is recognised by the Jamaican government.

Source: bobmarley.com