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Ky-Mani Marley - Smile
The Marley surname perpetuates Jamaican royalty, resonates world-wide recognition and represents the pioneer of a cultural, political and social revolution. Reggae icon and legend Bob Marley blessed the world with his timeless, brilliant and message filled sound which continues to inspire and influence audiences today. With such a living past, Bob Marley’s conviction and passion for music unintentionally was passed to the lives of his offspring and has allowed the Marley name to remain relevant amongst the hierarchy of the reggae sound.
Ky-Mani is a fitting name for a charismatic artist whose East African name means “adventurous traveler.” Born on February 26, 1976, Ky-Mani Marley is the son of Bob Marley and table tennis champion Anita Belnavis. Ky-mani is the second youngest of Bob’s eleven children. While bearing the Marley name, Ky-Mani’s childhood told a different story. Born in Falmouth, Trelawney, Jamaica and settling in Miami, Florida at the age of seven, he was raised in the inner-city in a two bedroom home along with eight family members.
Being exposed to an urban lifestyle, Ky-Mani adopted the attitude that all people are equal – no one is above or beneath him. This attitude has become the motto for the way he lives his life today. Humble. Soft spoken. Sincere. Loyal. Honest. Genuine. These are the makings of Ky-Mani Marley.
As a child he had no interest following in the footsteps of his world-famous father and was more inclined to play sports. However, the seed that was planted by Bob’s legacy sprouted in 1997 when Ky-Mani teamed up with hip hop artist Pras of The Fugees for a rendition of Eddy Grant’s “Electric Avenue.” This would be the defining moment in his journey which would lead him to pick up the torch his iconic father lit so many years ago.
Ky-Mani has three studio albums to his credit: The Journey (Shang), in 1999, which received mass critical acclaim and peaked at #7 on the Billboard reggae album charts; 2001’s Many More Roads (Fractal Ent/Reggae Vibes) which was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album; and Radio (Vox), from 2007, which has more of a hip hop feel than his previous albums and reached #1 on the Billboard reggae album charts.