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Bob Marley made priceless contribution to reggae

Published:Sunday | February 1, 2015 | 12:00 AM

As we gear up towards the 70th birthday of reggae legend Bob Marley, members of the entertainment fraternity gave their own thoughts on how he championed reggae's move in taking reggae music to the world at large.

In your eyes, how has Bob Marley contributed in taking reggae music to the international stage?

Romain Virgo, artiste

For me, Bob Marley's biggest contribution was that he made reggae music truly universal, in that he appeals and connects to all age groups, all races, nationalities, creed and class in a deep way. No one before managed that.

Dean Frazer, saxophonist

As far as I am concerned, Bob Marley has overachieved. I have not seen another artiste, musician or entertainer who has displayed such professionalism. Bob Marley believed in what he was doing. He was always rehearsing, always wanting to make his music better. His level of thinking and professionalism was beyond what you would imagine. I personally hope that one of these days I could be like that.

I-Octane, artiste

From my angle, he has contributed from an original perspective.

Originality was key. It became a trend and a brand. He was authentic and different and that became a movement. He didn't dilute it, it stood out. His approach, how he carried himself, everything was different.

Tarrus Riley, artiste

It is not only evident to me, but to the entire world, the amount of work that Bob Marley put in. He toured and recorded extensively. Never at any point did he think locally, he always aimed high.

With the right machinery, he made the best of his chances. He visited places that we can't even pronounce. His message was international. He preached about love, equality and justice for everyone.

Kabaka Pyramid, artiste

There would be no international stage for reggae without Bob Marley and The Wailers. Wha dem man deh do fi the industry of reggae is priceless.

Others around that time were doing the same work, but as the spearhead and the face of reggae music, when we go to places now and we have the red, gold and green, or the Jamaican colours, the first thing that comes to people's mind is Bob Marley. Dem man deh set di ting. His contribution is priceless. We wouldn't be able to do what we are doing now, carrying bands on the road and all dem ting deh, if it wasn't for the work that Bob and The Wailers put in.

Shane Brown, producer

Bob Marley was our first superstar and even though he is not with us, he remains as one of the biggest superstars. His message has impacted both adults and children. His brand will never die. He had that international appeal. His music was soothing to the ears and how he carried himself was appealing to the eyes. He put in the hard work, he wanted something for himself and for the music, and he achieved it.

- Davina Henry