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Bob Marley and the Wailers' Blue Plaque Ceremony in London

Bob Marley and the Wailers' Blue Plaque Ceremony in London

Bob Marley and the Wailers' Blue Plaque Ceremony in London

By on - Photos by Felix Foueillis - 1 comment

After 40 years the singer's former home is commemorated for posterity.

The modest semi-detached London house where Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer lived in 1972 has been honoured with a commemorative blue plaque to denote its former occupants.

United Reggae witnessed the unveiling ceremony on Saturday 8th September at 15 the Circle, Neasden, NW2, which also housed Wailers Carlton and Aston Barrett. The event was attended by friends, relatives, and fellow artists, as well as the media and public.

The singer Delroy Washington, who spearheaded the project, spoke about meeting Marley for the first time, explaining that "the simplicity of Bob Marley was the attraction".

Bob Marley Blue Plaque - London

The producer Bunny Lee shared his personal recollections saying he and the superstar "had some fun memories, some good and some bad" adding "You didn't get on Bob's wrong side - he didn't take foolishness".

Other musical guests included Locksley Gichie of the Cimarons, who backed Marley at his first shows in Britain, the singers Little Roy, Brenda Lawson and Dave Barker, and original Steel Pulse member and Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra founder Michael Riley. Also in attendance were Earl Sixteen, Dimples Hinds of the Marvels and Leroy "Lepke" Anderson, brother of Bob's wife, Rita.

Local politicians included Brent Council leader, Muhammed Butt, Councillor Lincoln Beswick, Former Brent South MP Dawn Butler and the Mayor of Brent, Michael Adeyeye who described Marley as "an international icon of dimension".

Bob Marley Blue Plaque - LondonAcademic and activist Professor Gus John performed a libation ritual at the property with a coconut shell of overproof rum. He called for the Wailers' story to be taught in schools, saying "reggae is resistance music - resistance to a culture of oppression" noting that history was made by "the struggle of ordinary working class Jamaicans in this humble house - not in some castle in the country".

In a surprise ending to the event, Bob's son Julian Marley arrived just as the speeches were drawing to a close and posed for photos in front of the house with Washington and his fans.

This is the third in a series of markers to celebrate reggae artists' contribution to the capital's cultural history. In 2006 a similar plaque was erected for Bob at Ridgemount Gardens, WC1 and in April 2012 Dennis Brown was honoured in NW10. Both projects were co-ordinated by the Nubian Jak Community Trust. Marley's new plaque was affixed by the Federation Of Reggae Music, of which Washington is leader.

Plans were announced to honour the former homes of Desmond Dekker, Jimmy Cliff, Junior English and Ken Boothe.

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Posted by Brenda Lawson on 09.21.2012
I am ever so proud of you and all the work you have accomplished over the years Delroy Washington.
Keep up the good works. You are our Inspiration.
Role - Model You Have been so magical warm.
Kind thoughtful & highly blessed. Many Thanks!

Best Wishes.

Brenda Lawson

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