One Love/People Get Ready by Bob Marley and the Wailers.
What could be better for our Home Confinement Music Festival today than the song that was named song of the millennium by the World Health Organization (WHO), picked as the best of Jamaican music in the last 50 years, and has been an irresistible international favorite?
One Love/People Get Ready is a reggae song by Bob Marley & The Wailers from their 1977 album Exodus. It was first recorded in a ska style—an earlier Jamaican music genre—by Marley’s original group, named simply The Wailers in 1965 and was released as a single and was included on their first singles compilation The Wailing Wailers later that year. It was rerecorded as part of the 1970 medley All In One, which contained reggae reworkings of their early ska songs. This was released as a single and is also included on the compilation African Herbsman. The version on Exodus was not released as a single until April 9 1984, promoting a forthcoming greatest hits album Legend. That single became one of his Marley’s biggest hits and something of a theme song.
Bob Marley & the Wailers.
The song included a sample and interpretation of the Impressions’ song People Get Ready written by Curtis Mayfield. The original recording of the song did not credit Mayfield song and was simply titled One Love because copyright law was not enforced for Jamaican recordings at this time. When the famous version was recorded for Island Records in 1977 it was titled One Love/People Get Ready and gave co-authorship credits to both Marley and Mayfield.
Curtis Mayfield was given co-writing credits for the sampling of his song People Get Ready.
When Marley died of cancer at age 36 in Miami while on a world tour in 1981 he was hailed as a national hero in Jamaica and given a full state funeral. Services included a performance by the Wailers, Marley family members, and other reggae stars.
A posthumous music video was directed by Don Letts in 1984 to accompany the Bob Marley & The Wailers compilation album, Legend. It stared young British-Jamaican boy, Jesse Lawrence, in his home in London’s World’s End Estate and on King’s Road dancing at the head of a large crowd of punks, locals, and tourists as well as archival footage of Marley. It also featured several cameo appearances including Paul McCartney, two members of Bananarama, Neville Staple of The Specials, members of the reggae groups Aswad and Musical Youth, and Suggs and Chas Smash of Madness. A single of the song was released alongside the video and gave Marley a posthumous UK hit when it reached #5 in May 1984.