As my family and I embark on a cruise to Jamaica, among other locales, I leave my faithful readers with a week of songs by the late, great Bob Marley.
In late ’92, Sinead O’Connor performed her most controversial act, performing an a capella version of Bob Marley’s ‘War’ on Saturday Night Live, tying the lyrics to sex abuse in the Catholic Church, and finishing by tearing up a picture of the Pope.
That didn’t go over very well.
SNL was caught by surprise, as O’Connor has shown another picture (of a refugee child) during rehearsals. The network fielded hundreds of complaints and O’Connor became a target for politicians, religious figures and celebrities alike.
By no means am I a big reggae fan, but I do like the occasional Bob Marley tune. My view of reggae follows the old line about certain tourist destinations… “It’s nice to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there.” I can’t imagine listening to a whole reggae album, let alone owning more than one.
But, like every white college boy, I owned the Bob Marley Legend compilation and I have to admit every song on it is a gem. I feel kind of bad that I sold it back in the legendary greatest-hits purge of the early 2000s. Perhaps I shouldn’t be such an absolutist.