In this dense but well-written work, veteran journalist Goldman
examines the cultural, political and violent roots of Bob Marley's
classic record Exodus.
Goldman is undeniably as intrepid and insightful as music journalists
come and this effort clearly required every ounce of her talent. In setting the
stage for what would become Marley's masterpiece, she reached beyond the Exodus
sessions themselves into the early history of Marley and the Wailers, into the
hornet's nest of Jamaican politics and the island's international history and
African history, as well as the mystical, often contradictory, tenets of
It is all necessary background for what made Marley both the searing
performer he was and the iconic figure he would become?a fame that would nearly
kill him. Just days before a planned free concert in 1976, Marley, his wife,
Rita, and Don Taylor were wounded by gunmen, forcing Marley to flee to
London, where Exodus was recorded.
This is no pop music hagiography but a brimming, tightly
constructed examination not just of Marley's life and music but of
human nature itself and the struggle for freedom. The more casual fans
of Marley may not follow; those who do will see deeper into the man
and his music thanever before.