Buju Banton was recently interviewed by ESSENCE, where he spoke about the legendary Bob Marley.
Buju made history in 2019 when he filled Jamaica’s National Stadium to capacity at his homecoming “Long Walk to Freedom” concert. The only other artiste who had achieved such a feat was Bob Marley after he filled a 35,000 seat stadium at his One Love Peace concert. Buju was asked if he thought that his impact would have the same level would be on par with Bob Marley, he stated, “No. Not at all.”
The Legacy artiste recalls an encounter with Marley when he was a youngster. He said that he had sold cigarettes to Bob Marley.
During the interview Banton spoke about his upbringing.
“I remember when I was about 6 or 7 years old, my mom used to sell at a roundabout in Barbican Square, where she had her stall where she sell yam, banana, orange, all kinda stuff. And I used to be on the roundabout too. I used to sell oranges in the bags on the roundabout….. she took me off the roundabout and have me beside her stall.” Buju said.
“And one particular day this blue car pulled up and there was nothing but some dreads in the car. And one of them who was on the driver side look out and said, “Madda, give me a pack a Craven-A [a popular Jamaican brand of cigarettes].” And she say, “ Hurry up quick an’ carry it go gi him [and carry it to him], a [it’s]Bob Marley.” And I ran across de road an’ put de Craven-A inna him han’. And by de time I should give him the Craven-A and turn around, we couldn’t see the car anymore. People from all over Jamaica just down pon de car, an was jus standing up and look at de dread….That was my encounter with the Gong (a reference to Bob Marley), yuh know” he added.
As stated by to the magazine, The Spectator, Bob Marley, “smoked the herb, cooked with the herb, drank the herb as a tea, grew the herb, passed the herb to his friends, and praised the herb in song.”
Last week, Banton released Blessed More Blessed, which is a 4 track compilation of remixes from his Upside Down 2020 track Blessed. The Marley family released episode six of Bob Marley’s Legacy, a 12 part YouTube documentary series which started in February as part of Marley’s 75th birthday celebrations.