Despite his death 42 years ago, reggae legend Bob Marley remains the most iconic figure to have called Jamaica home. Prior to his death in 1981, Marley and his band, the Wailers, performed across Europe for their 1977 Exodus Tour.
Travelling alongside the renowned musician was American photographer Kate Simon, whom Marley invited to join him on tour. Simon has shared rare photographs and stories of her time with the artiste in her recently re-released book Rebel Music: Bob Marley & Roots Reggae.
Simon’s most poignant photograph captured Marley seemingly asleep while seated on a sofa. However, Simon recalled that it was a moment of contemplation, and the Is This Love singer was awake.
What makes the black-and-white image so poignant is that it captured Marley in a moment of reflection with his toe bandaged after being injured in Paris. It was after this injury that Marley discovered that he had melanoma, which would claim his life four years later.
Marley received the injury to his toe during a football match. The artiste loved football and, according to Simon, was an enthusiastic athlete who would use his free time to play with Gilly and Neville, his cook and art director. Simon captured one such moment while in Germany after a soundcheck.
Simon described Marley as a jovial person. His friendly and magnetic personality is evident in photographs taken in moments like the one below, taken while he assured Simon that he would be okay with her photographing him while on tour.
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