Bob Marley - Legend: The Best of Bob Marley & The Wailers (Vinyl)

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Legend is a compilation album by Bob Marley and the Wailers. It was released in May 1984 by Island Records. It is a greatest hits collection of singles in its original vinyl format and is the best-selling reggae album of all-time, with over 12 million sold in the US, over 3.3 million in the UK (where it is the seventeenth best-selling album and an estimated 25 million copies sold globally. In 2003, the album was ranked number 46 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time", maintaining the ranking in a 2012 revised list, but dropping to number 48 in the 2020 revised list.

Despite its generally positive reception, Legend has been criticized for being a deliberately inoffensive selection of Marley's less political music, shorn of any radicalism that might damage sales. In 2014 in the Phoenix New Times, David Accomazzo wrote "Dave Robinson, who constructed the tracklist for Legend, [said that] the tracklist for Legend deliberately was designed to appeal to white audiences. Island Records had viewed Marley as a political revolutionary, and Robinson saw this perspective as damaging to Marley's bottom line. So he constructed a greatest-hits album that showed just one face of the Marley prism, the side he deemed most sellable to the suburbs. [...] If you're looking for mass-market appeal to secular-progressive America, you don't include songs that invoke collective guilt over the slave trade, nor do you address the inconvenient truth that the bucolic Jamaican lifestyle of reggae, sandy beaches, and marijuana embraced by millions of college freshmen, exists only because of the brutal slave trade. [...] the songs on Legend offer just a brief glimpse into his music. The definitive album of the most important reggae singer of all time is a hodgepodge collection of love songs, feel-good sentiment, and mere hints of the fiery activist whose politics drew bullets in the '70s." Vivien Goldman wrote in 2015, "when he does get played on the radio now, it's the mellow songs, not the angry songs, that get heard – the ones that have been compiled on albums such as Legend."

The classic Marley album, the one that any fair-weather reggae fan owns, Legend contains 14 of his greatest songs, running the gamut from "I Shot the Sheriff" to the meditative "Redemption Song" and the irrepressible "Three Little Birds." Some may argue that the compilation shortchanges his groundbreaking early ska work or his status as a political commentator, but this isn't meant to be definitive, it's meant to be an introduction, sampling the very best of his work. And it does that remarkably well, offering all of his genre-defying greats and an illustration of his excellence, warmth, and humanity. In a way, it is perfect since it gives a doubter or casual fan anything they could want. Let's face it, the beauty and simplicity of Marley's music was as important as his message, and that's captured particularly well here.


Any roots/rock/reggae groove worth his roach clip owns the seminal albums CATCH A FIRE and UPRISING, but LEGEND seems to be the one compilation that virtually EVERYONE owns. After all, BOB MARLEY's universal message of love, hope, and understanding transcended race, gender, and musical taste. Most folks were first exposed to Jamaica's biggest star in the early seventies via JOHNNY NASH's hit cover of STIR IT UP and ERIC CLAPTON's chart-topping take on I SHOT THE SHERIFF; both lacked MARLEY's emotion-charged vocals, but captured his fiery spirit. Stark acoustic protest REDEMPTION SONG...slinky dance-floor fave COULD YOU BE LOVED (spotlighting BOB's female backing trio THE I THREES)...provocative singalong anthem GET UP STAND UP...these are as important and well loved as any ZEP or STONES staple from the same era. The mighty WAILERS, featuring future stars PETER TOSH and BUNNY LIVINGSTON figure prominently in the mix, but it's the master humanitarian himself that gets every message across with ear-grabbing grace and hypnotic beauty.


By: Dave Chavert.

A1 Is This Love 3:52
A2 No Woman No Cry
Co-producer – Steve Smith (3)
A3 Could You Be Loved 3:35
A4 Three Little Birds 2:58
A5 Buffalo Soldier
Co-producer – Errol Brown (2)
A6 Get Up Stand Up 3:14
A7 Stir It Up 3:38
B1 One Love / People Get Ready 2:53
B2 I Shot The Sheriff 3:46
B3 Waiting In Vain 4:06
B4 Redemption Song 3:46
B5 Satisfy My Soul 3:49
B6 Exodus 4:16
B7 Jamming 3:17

Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Island Records Ltd.
Copyright © – Island Records Ltd.
Pressed By – MPO
Acoustic Guitar – Bob Marley
Backing Vocals – Earl "Wire" Lindo, Judy Mowatt, Junior Marvin, Marcia Griffiths, Rita Marley, Tyrone Downie
Bass – Aston "Family Man" Barrett
Bongos – Bunny Wailer
Co-producer – Bob Marley & The Wailers, Chris Blackwell (tracks: A2, A3, A6, A7, B2, B4)
Congas – Bunny Wailer
Drums – Carlton Barrett
Guitar – Peter Tosh
Keyboards – Earl "Wire" Lindo, Tyrone Downie
Lacquer Cut By – LvC*
Lead Guitar – Al Anderson, Donald Kinsey, Earl "Chinna" Smith, Junior Marvin
Lead Vocals – Bob Marley
Organ – Bernard "Touter" Harvey, Peter Tosh
Percussion – Alvin "Seeco" Patterson, Aston "Family Man" Barrett, Bob Marley, Carlton Barrett, Earl "Chinna" Smith, Earl "Wire" Lindo, Joe Higgs, Tyrone Downie
Piano – Bernard "Touter" Harvey, Peter Tosh
Rhythm Guitar – Bob Marley, Earl "Chinna" Smith
Vocals – Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh
BACK TO BLACK - Island 50th (1959-2009) download coupon
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