Six minutes with Ziggy Marley
The eldest son of Bob Marley has a long and varied discography. Beginning in the ’80s, he spent nearly two decades recording with his brothers and sisters as Ziggy Marley and the Melodymakers. Since 2003, he’s dropped five solo albums including a Grammy Award winning children’s album “Family Time” in 2009. “It was kind of natural for me to do something in the kids space musically,” Marley said over the phone this week. For the father of six who once made an utterly charming appearance on Sesame Street, the children’s album was always in the back of his mind.
His most recent full-length “Fly Rasta” isn’t specifically for children, but earlier this fall he dropped a companion EP “Light House,” a charity project to benefit Heart of L.A. an organization that works with underprivileged youth. Both releases are full of sunny positivity and messages of unity that are familiar ground for the artist, an unfaltering champion of spiritual uplift.
Marley plays the Belmont on Sunday. His shows tend to be emotional, high energy events that mix upbeat originals with his father’s classics, carrying the legacy of the elder Marley forward for the next generation. “It’s a continuation because we are using elements that are a part of his music and a part of reggae music way, way back,” Marley said.
Among songs of love and harmony the new album touches on politics with the track “So Many Rising.” Marley describes the song as a “comment on the rising of poverty and the seemingly unending spirit of less fortunate people.” It also serves as a call to arms. “The march of the people will help them take a stance,” he said.