Rita Marley

Alpharita Constantia Marley OD (née Anderson; born 25 July 1946) is a Cuban-born Jamaican singer and the widow of Bob Marley. She was a member of the vocal group the I Threes, together with Marcia Griffiths and Judy Mowatt, who gained recognition because the backing vocalists for Bob Marley and the Wailers.


Formative years and marriage to Bob Marley

Rita was born in Santiago de Cuba, to Leroy Anderson and Cynthia “Beda” Jarrett. She grew up within the higher stage of Beachwood Avenue, positioned in Kingston, Jamaica. In her e book No Girl No Cry: My Life with Bob Marley, she describes how she was raised by her Aunt Viola on Greenwich Park Street.

Within the mid-Nineteen Sixties, Rita met Bob Marley after assembly Peter Tosh. After it was realized that she was a singer, she was requested to audition for the Soulettes. The group included Rita, her cousin Constantine “Dream” Walker, and Marlene “Treasured” Gifford[citation needed]. Bob Marley, then a member of the Wailers vocal trio together with Bunny Livingston and Peter Tosh, grew to become the group’s mentor and supervisor and thru working collectively, he and Rita fell in love.

Soulettes launched recordings embrace rocksteady tunes equivalent to “Time for Every thing”, “Flip Flip Flip” (launched in 1966, this was a canopy of The Byrds’ hit music primarily based on a Bible quote, which was initially written by people singer Pete Seeger) and “A Deh Pon Dem”. “Pals and Lovers”, “One Extra Probability” and “That Ain’t Proper” (that includes concord vocals by the Wailers), in addition to a duet by Rita and Bunny Livingston, “Bless You” had been issued years in a while the Lovers and Pals album.

After these recordings for the Studio One label coached by Bob, Rita married Bob Marley round February 1966, simply earlier than her husband moved to Wilmington, Delaware (USA) for just a few months to make a residing working on the Dupont Lodge there. Bob was changed by Constantine “Imaginative and prescient” Walker, who recorded just a few songs as a member of The Wailers throughout this era.

The Wailers

Upon Bob’s return on the finish of the summer time of 1966, Bunny Livingston, Peter Tosh and Bob created their unbiased label Wail ‘n’ Soul’m, which launched a number of Bob Marley and the Wailers, in addition to Peter Tosh and the Wailers 45RPM single information together with, Bend Down Low, Hypocrites and Tosh’s Dem Haffi Get a Beatin’ in 1966-1968.

As Bunny was jailed in 1968 for hashish possession, Rita joined the Wailers, changing Bunny for just a few months. It’s at the moment that The Wailers met U.S. singer Johnny Nash, who produced a collection of Wailers rocksteady recordings. In April 1968 Nash’s supervisor Danny Sims signed Peter Tosh, Bob, and Rita Marley to unique publishing, administration, and manufacturing contracts in alternate for just a few {dollars} and a possibility to report in Kingston for the New York-based JAD label owned by Johnny Nash, musician Arthur Jenkins and Danny Sims.

Musicians on this 1968 Wailers session function Peter Tosh and the Marleys.
Rita sang vocals on a dozen high quality rocksteady and soul tracks, most of which weren’t issued on the time. New recordings of Bend Down Low and Mellow Temper obtained issued as a single in the usA. below the title “Bob, Rita and Peter”.

The unique 1968 periods together with all the authentic musicians — and with out the horns — finally surfaced on the Freedom Time album issued in 2003 by JAD’s companion in France (55 Information) after producer Bruno Blum lastly blended them in Paris from the unique four-track tapes. One music, “Play Play Play”, options Rita Marley on lead vocals with harmonies sung by Peter and Bob. One other Rita Marley sung tune, “Lonely Woman”, and a pop duet with Bob, “Milk Shake and Potato Chips”, had been lastly launched in 2003 on the Insurgent JAD/55 lengthy field set.

The I Three

Following the delivery of Bob and Rita’s second baby, David, in 1968, Bob returned to Delaware in 1969 to work on the evening shift in a Chrysler manufacturing facility. Bunny had returned to the Wailers on the finish of 1968 and Rita didn’t report with Bob till 1974, when her husband shaped the I Three (typically wrongly spelt I Threes) concord vocal group that includes Marcia Griffiths and Judy Mowatt to exchange Peter and Bunny, who had left the band in 1973.

Along with the I Three, Bob Marley & the Wailers recorded the album Natty Dread in 1974, rising to worldwide stardom with the hit observe “No Girl No Cry”. It was adopted by the 1976 hit album Rastaman Vibration that includes the favored observe “Roots, Rock, Reggae”. On 3 December 1976 two days earlier than “Smile Jamaica”, a big free live performance organized by Bob Marley with the help of Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley, Rita, Bob, and supervisor Don Taylor had been wounded in an assault on the Marley house by gunmen affiliated with Manley’s enemies. Rita survived a shot to the top and Taylor sustained severe accidents from being shot within the leg. Bob had a bullet skid his chest and wound his arm, however however performed this main present in Kingston.[citation needed]

Bob Marley, the Wailers, and the I Three, together with Rita, moved to London in late 1976. By then Bob was residing with Cindy Breakspeare, a Jamaican mannequin who had simply been topped Miss World 1976. They might quickly have a son, Damian. Regardless of this, Rita stayed to sing along with her husband.

Later life

After Marley’s demise, she recorded just a few albums below her title with some success within the UK.[1] A 1982 cowl model of the Love Joys’s music “One Draw” was a profitable single in Europe.

In 1986, Rita determined to transform their former residence in Kingston into the Bob Marley Museum. She is the Founder and Chairperson of the Robert Marley Basis, Bob Marley Belief, and the Bob Marley Group of Firms. She adopted 35 youngsters in Ethiopia and has assisted over 200 youngsters in Konkonuru Methodist Faculty in Ghana.[2]

In 2000, Marley created the Rita Marley Basis, a non-governmental, not-for-profit, non-partisan group that works to alleviate poverty and starvation in growing international locations. It particularly targets aged and youth.[3][4] It has given out plenty of scholarships to music college students in Ghana. It hosts the annual Africa Unite concert events which strives to unfold international consciousness about points that have an effect on Africa and to develop lasting options.[5]

In 1996, Rita Marley was awarded the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican authorities, and in 2010 obtained the Marcus Garvey Lifetime Award.[6] On 3 August 2013, she was made an honorary citizen of Ghana by the Ghanaian authorities.[5] In November 2015 Marley was awarded an honorary Physician of Letters diploma by the College of the West Indies.[6]

In 2004, Whereas selling her memoir No Girl No Cry: My Life with Bob Marley, Rita claimed Bob Marley raped her in 1973. She advised the Every day Mirror that she had refused to have intercourse along with her husband due to his infidelity, however to no avail. “Bob would not take no for a solution. He stated to me, ‘No, you are my spouse and also you’re presupposed to.’ So he pressured himself on me, and I name that rape.”[7] She later stipulated that she had been misquoted by the sensationalist information outlet.

In September 2016, Rita Marley suffered a “severe” stroke whereas on a go to to Miami to attend a particular occasion[8] and has saved a low public profile since. Nonetheless, she made her first public look at an award ceremony on March 9, 2019 in Kingston to simply accept the Iconic Award (For a Duo/Group), alongside along with her fellow I Three members Griffiths and Mowatt, given by the Jamaica Reggae Trade Affiliation.[9]

Plan to rebury her husband

Rita Marley deliberate to have the physique of her late husband exhumed and buried in Ethiopia, his “religious resting place” in 2005. She needed it to be a month-long celebration of what would have been his sixtieth birthday. The world by which she needed to bury him was a Rastafari neighborhood that was given land by the nation’s final emperor, Haile Selassie.

She claimed to have the backing of the Ethiopian authorities and stated “We’re engaged on bringing his stays to Ethiopia. It’s a part of Bob’s personal mission. Ethiopia is his religious resting place. With the sixtieth anniversary this yr, the impression is there and the time is correct.”[10]


Rita has six youngsters, three from different relationships and three with Bob. Bob adopted Rita’s two youngsters as his personal and so they have the Marley title. Bob has 11 youngsters in complete: the 2 of Rita’s that he adopted, three born to Rita, and the remaining six with separate ladies. Rita’s youngsters are, so as of delivery:

  1. Sharon Marley, born 23 November 1964 (daughter of Rita from a earlier relationship however then adopted by Marley after his marriage with Rita)
  2. Cedella Marley born 23 August 1967
  3. “Ziggy Marley” (David Nesta Marley), born 17 October 1968
  4. Stephen Marley, born 20 April 1972
  5. Stephanie Marley, born 17 August 1974 (from a relationship with Ital, based on Bob’s mom, Cedella Booker)[citation needed]
  6. Serita Stewart, born 11 August 1985 (from a relationship with one man named Cheesy, based on her biography.)


  • 1966: Pied Piper, Rio
  • 1967: “Pied Piper” (single, on Membership Ska ’67), Mango
  • 1980: Rita Marley – Trident
  • 1981: Who Feels It Is aware of It, Shanachie Information
  • 1982: “Harambe (Working Collectively for Freedom)”, Shanachie Information
  • 1986: “Starting”, I-Three, EMI / TUFF GONG
  • 1988: We Should Carry On, Shanachie Information
  • 1990: Fantastic thing about God’s, Shanachie Information
  • 1990: Good Ladies Tradition, Shanachie Information
  • 1990: One Draw, Shanachie Information
  • 2003: Sings Bob Marley…and Pals, Shanachie Information
  • 2004: Play Play, Common Music
  • 2005: Sunshine After Rain
  • 2006: Gifted Fourteen Carnation


  • 1966: The Soulettes – Time for Every thing (Jamaica All Stars compilation album), Studio One
  • 1968: The Wailers – Pay Play Play and Rhapsody (launched on the Freedom Time album in 2003), JAD
  • 1983: John Denver – It is About Time, RCA
  • 1996: Khaled – “Ouelli El Darek” (with the I Three), Sahra, Wrasse Information


  • 1995: Rita Marley / Ignacio Scola / Gregorio Paniagua: Spectacles for tribuffalos, Tabata Musica y Letra
  • 2006: Fergie / Rita Marley & The I-3’s: “Mary Jane Footwear” – The Dutchess


Rita Marley, Hettie Jones (2004). No Girl, No Cry: My Life with Bob Marley, Hyperion

ISBN 0-7868-6867-8

  • Rita Marley – official web site
  • Rita Marley discography at Discogs Edit this at Wikidata
  • Rita Marley at IMDb
  • Rita Marley biography at Starpulse.com
  • Rita Marley biography at VH1

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