Prompted by reading a dedication on Shawn Stussy’s blog – who incidentally posted a dedication to Charlotte Gainsbourg, the day after me…………coincidence I don’t think so :). Anyway Shawn was praising the positive influence Bob Marley had, had on his life, and I was reminded of the article in ‘Stuff White People Like’ quote:
“Since so many people are into Bob Marley, it is only natural for advanced white people to profess to only marginally liking Bob Marley (note: it is impossible for a white person to outright dislike him). Instead, these white people will claim to preferring more obscure artists like Burning Spear or Peter Tosh.
But be warned that a white person saying they like “reggae” what they really mean is “reggae from 1965-1983.”
Under no circumstances should you ever bring a white person to a dancehall reggae concert, it will frighten them.
Note: if you are talking to a white person who is really into Bob Marley, has dreadlocks, and professes to be a Rastafarian, you should end the conversation immediately. These people are of no value unless you need directions to a WTO protest or have questions about how bad a human can smell.”
It made me feel slightly sad, and ashamed that I was guilty of dismissing Bob Marleys contribution to humanity as a footnote in history synonymous with guilty pleasures, such as McDonald’s Big Mac’s. True I would often shudder at the site of a Bob Marley poster on the wall of some art student at college, and during my short stint of having my hair in dreads I rarely took kindly to the comparison to the big man. (nor did I take to being referred to as ‘brother’)
The simple truth is that Bob is a classic example of ‘victim of your own success’, the fact that he is so universally recognised and eulogised as the patron saint of ‘One Love’, means the more post modern cynics amongst us feel the need to distance ourselves from his ‘glory’.(yes I said glory)
He definitely deserves his spot on the Hall of fame, who else could rock double denim and get away with it !
Shawn if your reading, this ones for you.
Another guilty confession, when I was a teenager I used to tell people I was at the children’s party, which forms some of the original footage used in this pop promo for One Love……….and the more gullible ones (mostly americans) believed me, at some point I think I almost believed it myself……. Sorry