Bob Marley to this day remains the icon of reggae, Jamaica, and the music of freedom and love. But his legacy is more than his music and the culture it brought with it. According to About Entertainment, Bob Marley had at least eleven children.
Bob Marley married Alfarita Anderson who went by the name of Rita in Kingston, Jamaica, on February 10, 1966. According to Bob Marley’s official website, Marley adopted two of Rita’s children from previous relationships and together they had three more children together. Below is a list of the known Marley children and their mothers.
- Sharon, born November 23, 1964 (adopted daughter of Rita from a previous relationship)
- Cedella, born August 23, 1967 (Rita, mother)
- David “Ziggy,” born October 17, 1968 (Rita, mother)
- Stephen, born April 20, 1972 (Rita, mother)
- Robert “Robbie,” born May 16, 1972 (Pat Williams, mother)
- Rohan, born May 19, 1972 (Janet Hunt, mother)
- Karen, born 1973 (Janet Bowen, mother)
- Stephanie, born August 17, 1974 (rumour has it that Stephanie was Rita’s daughter from an affair but acknowledged as Bob’s daughter)
- Julian, born June 4, 1975 (Lucy Pounder, mother)
- Ky-Mani, born February 26, 1976 (Anita Belnavis, mother)
- Damian, born July 21, 1978 (Cindy Breakspeare, mother)
For those interested, Bob Marley’s official website (in our day and age, being dead is no excuse not to have a website) features a great collection of at least a part of the legendary performer’s large family.
Several of Marley’s children went into entertainment. But which of Bob Marley’s kids are the most famous?
Damian “Junior Gong” Marley
Bob Marley’s youngest son, Damian “Junior Gong” Marley, is well-known to reggae fans around the world. Just as talented as his father, and an exceptional musician in his own right, Damian won three Grammy awards: the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album for his album Halfway Tree, and two Grammys for “Welcome to Jamrock” in 2006. The Hollywood Reporter wrote that Bob Marley’s youngest son holds the Grammys in very high regard.
“I think it was great. As a child of reggae music, we always like to see when reggae is put upon a pedestal and of course the Grammys is one of the highest pedestals in the world, so we are glad to be a part of that.”
Stephen “Raggamuffin” Marley
But if you think that’s impressive, wait until you hear about Bob Marley’s other son, Stephen “Raggamuffin” Marley. Born April 20, 1972, he and his band, “Ziggy Marley & The Melody Makers,” have won a total of six Grammys as of 2015, with “Stephen Marley’s Revelation Pt. 1 – The Root of Life” winning the 2012 Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album. In his Sway in the Morning interview, Stephen Marley commented on the meanings behind the lyrics of one of his recent releases, “Keeper of the Flame.”
“We are the keeper of own flames. I am the keeper of my flame. You are responsible for your own fire. It’s going to shine your life for you.”
According to the Bob Marley official website, Bob and Rita helped their children form The Melody Makers, which consisted of Sharon, Cedella, David “Ziggy,” and Stephen. Truly, what could be more reggae than four of Bob Marley’s children making music in one place at the same time?
[Photo: Scott Gries, Kevin Winter, Evening Standard / Getty Images]