Niaah, Jalani A.; Stanley Niaah, Sonjah N.
Author Affiliation, Ana.
Bob Marley, Rastafari and the Jamaican Tourist Product
Daye, Marcella; Chambers, Donna; Roberts, Sherma (Eds.)
New Perspectives in Caribbean Tourism,
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40 - 64
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After 1981, with the passing of Bob Marley, it is believed that there was a decline in the overtly cultural music emanating from Jamaica. In particular the emergence of ‘Dancehall music’ is thought to have opened up a debate about Jamaican music, becoming adulterated and embroiled in issues surrounding slackness, in contrast to its former explicitly revolutionary-political fame. But though culture-centered music seems to have suffered with his death, the purchase of Marley has been one of turning the ears of the world towards Jamaica and with this has come not only the imitation of his sound and music but also his aesthetics, identity and faith, allowing multitudes of his fans to seek out his environs to associate with the locales and inspirations that spawned him. Music tourism, especially that surrounding the phenomenon of reggae and its Rastafari mediums, has increasingly taken pride of place in Jamaica largely due to Marley. With the aid of data gathered through surveys at the Bob Marley museum in Kingston Jamaica, this chapter assesses the impact that Bob Marley and the Rastafari movement in general has had on the Jamaican tourist product over the last twenty-five years. It examines in particular, the way in which the island could be viewed as a Mecca for the globalizing Rastafari/Reggae ‘pilgrims’ who come.....