As we get going into reggae month, one of the biggest celebrations will be the 70th anniversary of the birth of the king of reggae, Bob Marley. While we celebrate the king, we should be careful not to forget, disrespect, disregard and discard the accomplishments of the prince of Reggae, Dennis Brown.
When we start reggae month, we pay so much attention attention to February 6th, that whether by accident or on purpose we pay little attention to February 1st, the birthday of Dennis Emmanuel Brown. Both men were great and used reggae to help spread the message of resistance, revolution, uprising, equal right and justice to the entire world. Both me deserve to be honored and celebrated.
Marley, who died in May 1981 at age 36 would be 70 on February 6. Dennis Brown died in June 1999. He would have celebrated his 58th birthday on February 1st.
Dennis Brown and Bob Marley recorded for producer Clement ‘Coxson’ Dodd’s Studio One early in their careers. As a member of The Wailers, Marley’s hits at Studio One included Simmer Down and It Hurts to be Alone. No Man is an Island and If I Follow my Heart are among Brown’s hits for Dodd.
Marley and Brown performed on two shows during their long careers: the April 1978 One Love Peace Concert at the National Stadium, and at Reggae Sunsplash at Jarrett Park, Montego Bay the following year.
In 1973, Marley began recording Natty Dread, his first solo album for Island Records. It contained the classic songs No Woman, No Cry, So Jah Seh and Them Belly Full. That year, 17-year-old Dennis Brown teamed with producer Winston ‘Niney’ Holness and the Soul Syndicate Band for the hit songs Cassandra, Westbound Train and No More Shall I Roam.
Listen and Enjoy the King and the Prince: