The Truth Is, Bob Marley Never Said That, Either

Categories: Whatever

bobmarley050411.jpg
Bob Marley: The coldest winter he ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.
In the last couple of days, we saw exactly how pretty words can be put in the mouths of even the most famous dead people. Unless you've been hiding out in the Tora Bora cave complex the past few days, you've heard all about how Martin Luther King never said, "I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy."

And neither did Mark Twain ever say that he "read some obituaries with great pleasure." In fact, here's what he did once say:

"I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it."

And Clarence Darrow, the great early 20th century attorney, once said this: "I have never killed any one, but I have read some obituary notices with great satisfaction."

All of that erroneous quoting reminded us of something that has been bothering us for the past year or so; namely, whether or not Bob Marley really said this:

"Truth is, everybody is going to hurt you; you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for."

It is all over the Net -- over a million citations, all credited to Marley. We've come across at least a hundred people who use it as their favorite quote on their Facebook page. And we are almost certain that Marley never said or sang anything of the sort. Over 4.4 million people have "liked" the quotation's fan page, for crying out loud.

We searched Google Groups and were unable to come across any use of that quote before 2001, two decades after Marley's death. You'd think a quote as popular as that one has proven, one allegedly uttered by one of the most famous entertainers in world history, would have turned up sooner.

We checked out the pretty exhaustive list of Marley's quotes on his top-listed fan site, and there's no mention of it there. Again, you'd think the rabid Marley fans who run that site would have slapped it on there.

It is not sourced to any song.

Other people can't find it sourced to any interviews or other public utterances either.

And while it does kinda sound like something he might put in a love song, it doesn't really sound like something he would have experienced in life.

This was a man who had eleven or twelve kids with eight or nine women, all while remaining married to his first wife (who also sexually explored). (Sources vary on the actual number of kids and women.) Maybe by "suffering for" he meant "impregnating," but that is not a Jamaican slang usage we have come across.

So we are kinda throwing down the gauntlet here to the whole entire Internet:

Can anyone cite a primary source that proves Bob Marley actually uttered those now-ubiquitous words?

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9 comments
sylviakris
sylviakris

this #Quote sends out the wrong kind of message out to our younger generation. like who would want to actually "suffer" for love? No Thank you! #Next #evoL 

hasinikoka
hasinikoka

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veritaspleasethnx
veritaspleasethnx

Yeah ,the quote that reads You may not be her first, her last, or her only. She loved before she may love again. But if she loves you now, what else matters? She's not perfect - you aren't either, and the two of you may never be perfect together but if she can make you laugh, cause you to think twice, and admit to being human and making mistakes, hold onto her and give her the most you can. She may not be thinking about you every second of the day, but she will give you a part of her that she knows you can break - her heart. So don't hurt her, don't change her, don't analyze and don't expect more than she can give. Smile when she makes you happy, let her know when she makes you mad, and miss her when she's not there. - Bob Marley is almost certainly not Bob Marley because that's simply not how a man who grew up Rastafarian would speak (or even write) if he were making a point that took that long. He sounds like this: Interviewer: "Can you tell the people what it means being a Rastafarian?"Bob: "I would say to the people, Be still, and know that His Imperial Majesty, Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia is the Almighty. Now, the Bible seh so, Babylon newspaper seh so, and I and I the children seh so. Yunno? So I don't see how much more reveal our people want. Wha' dem want? a white God, well God come black. True true." Even if what he said in the interview were written in standard English, (Jamaican Standard even), so that words like "seh" read "say", and "dem" read "them", it would not sound anything like the Vanilla Standard English of the bogus first quote.

Hoohawdub
Hoohawdub

This one is equally CRAP.

“You may not be her first, her last, or her only. She loved before she may love again. But if she loves you now, what else matters? She's not perfect - you aren't either, and the two of you may never be perfect together but if she can make you laugh, cause you to think twice, and admit to being human and making mistakes, hold onto her and give her the most you can. She may not be thinking about you every second of the day, but she will give you a part of her that she knows you can break - her heart. So don't hurt her, don't change her, don't analyze and don't expect more than she can give. Smile when she makes you happy, let her know when she makes you mad, and miss her when she's not there.” ― Bob Marley  

Timoversion
Timoversion

This one, also attributed to Marley, seems like it could have come from one of his 60's ska pop songs, but I remain suspicious.  Any thoughts?

""You may not be her first, her last, or her only. She loved before she may love again. But if she loves you now, what else matters? She's not perfect - you aren't either, and the two of you may never be perfect together but if she can make you laugh, cause you to think twice, and admit to being human and making mistakes, hold onto her and give her the most you can. She may not be thinking about you every second of the day, but she will give you a part of her that she knows you can break - her heart. So don't hurt her, don't change her, don't analyze and don't expect more than she can give. Smile when she makes you happy, let her know when she makes you mad, and miss her when she's not there."  Bob Marley"

Brandt Hardin
Brandt Hardin

BobMarley has influenced the entire world with his music, which will live on to berediscovered by more and more generations to come. His work has affected my life and my art somuch. I paid tribute to him with asurreal and psychedelic portrait inspired by his words. You can see it on my artist’s blog at http://dregstudiosart.blogspot...

Katy
Katy

This all reminds me of something President Abraham Lincoln once said: "The trouble with quotes on the Internet is that 80% of them are just plain made up."

That guy was really wise...

Robert Boyd
Robert Boyd

Next you'll be telling me that Eleanor Roosevelt didn't really say, "Not only is Robert Boyd a great humanitarian, but he is the finest lover I have ever experienced." Won't you leave at least some of our illusions unshattered?

John Nova Lomax
John Nova Lomax

That's probably more LiveJournal BS that has made the leap to Facebook and suddenly become the Wisdom of Bob.

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