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Rita Marley

Best known as Bob Marley's wife, Rita Marley was also a solo artist in her own right both before and after her marriage, and served as the caretaker of her husband's legacy following his premature death in 1981. Born Alpharita Anderson in Cuba, she grew up largely in the Trenchtown section of Kingston, and first sang with a female ska trio called the Soulettes. The Soulettes began recording for Clement "Coxsone" Dodd's Studio One label in 1964, and Dodd asked his emerging young star Bob Marley to mentor them; Marley and Anderson fell in love and married in 1966. Rita recorded with two different Soulettes lineups in the mid-'60s, cut a few hit solo singles of her own (including "Pied Piper"), and backed the Wailers on some of their '60s recordings. When Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer left the Wailers in 1974, Rita helped organize the I-Threes, a female vocal trio consisting of herself, Marcia Griffiths, and Judy Mowatt. The I-Threes backed Bob Marley in the studio and on tour for the remainder of his career, up until his death from melanoma in 1981. During that time, both Marleys narrowly escaped an assassination attempt in 1976, in which one bullet grazed Rita's head and another hit Bob's arm.

In 1981, as Bob succumbed to cancer, Rita recorded the solo album Who Feels It Knows It. A spiritual, life-affirming statement, the album featured a lighthearted hit single in "One Draw," a blatantly pro-marijuana lesson in proper smoking technique. Banned by the BBC, "One Draw" became the first reggae single to top Billboard's disco singles chart, which was used to track dance-club play at the time. Another single, "Play Play," had a measure of success in the U.K. However, Marley found it difficult to pursue a full-time recording career; she spent much of the '80s handling the assorted legal and business interests associated with her husband's name and estate, and also mentored her children's musical venture, Ziggy Marley & the Melody Makers. She finally returned to solo recording with 1988's Harambe (Working Together for Freedom), and followed it in 1991 with We Must Carry On, which garnered a Grammy nomination. Both albums continued her knack for danceable, rootsy reggae with spiritual messages and a definite sense of fun. Marley finally returned with a new album, Rita Marley Sings Bob Marley...and Friends, in 2003. ~ Steve Huey, Rovi
full bio

Comments

Kiss ur left hand say yo crushes name say a school day close yo hand say yo name open yo hand and look at it post this on at least 15 more songs and yo crush will ask u out on the date or day u said
One love
Rita you're a true Angel :) love Reggae!!! One Love everyone!!! <3
Rita, I meet Bob n I'm not to sure if it was Peter or bunny back in 73 or 74 on acoma pueblo, and dat was da start of reggae for me, jah jah bless
rftc2006
Excellent!!! !
A true woman ...standby ur man and the rest will follow...Que e n desever her crown ...god bless ur legacy
bpassionb5
Rita Marley Very Talented in her own rights
Queen Rita Marley is LOVE. She is a true gift to the world. I thank Queen Rita for her many sacrafices. Queen Rita is the epitome of BEUAUTY. She is a great roll mpodel for roots women in song and lifestyle.
REAL REGGAE I LIKE IT! ALWAS THE BEST:
I think I had my first epiphany the first moment I heard Reggae for the first time......Th a n k x to all raggae artists especially Bob Marley!
420
TRUE REGGAE.
Loved the I-Three performances with Bob Marley. Rita has been instrumental to Bob Marley carrier and life. Missed attending any of Bob's concerts, but the family is dear to me. Their contribution to the reggae music is unparalled. One love, Peace and Blessings.

beth.bratt
much respect to a wonderful artist and her family, who are also very talented
We miss you Bob!
Much Respect to Mother Rita Marley, I love her and the entire Marlely Family.
Jah Bless
Who would try and kill such peaceful talented people?...Th i s is one of the reasons I beleive in hell.
She has nice voice
I LOVE HER

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