[Updated Friday at 4:30 p.m. with comments from a former Houston reggae promoter who asked to remain anonymous, because "I still have hopes of continuing in the Houston reggae industry." His comments are underneath the original story.[
Photo by Adrian Boot/Fifty-Six Hope Road Music, Ltd./UMG To date Bob Marley has sold an estimated 75 million albums -- an overwhelming amount of them after his death in May 1981.
Today would have been the late Bob Marley's 70th birthday. A simple Facebook search yields dozens, if not hundreds, of celebrations in the reggae icon's honor across the globe, places like Austin; Brooklyn; London; Baltimore; Knoxville, Tenn.; Key West,Fla.; and even the Ukraine.
But Houston...not so much. Not only is no quasi-official birthday party scheduled, there's not even a reggae band playing in town tonight that we could find. However, fans looking for somewhere to gather and soak in Marley's one-love rastaman vibration can head to Club Riddims on West Bellfort, where CEO Fadda Owen says a DJ will be spinning Bob's tunes all night; "of course we will." Its shopping-center neighbor, the Cool Runnings Caribbean cafe, is also a likely candidate; downtown's newly opened Nightingale Room is also playing all Marley tonight. But even the leader of one of Houston's top reggae groups -- and there aren't that many to start with -- says they have an open date this evening.
"We can't find anybody," says Idiginis singer/guitarist Aauzraam Levi, meaning a gig. "If we knew of anything that was happening, of course we'd love to be a part of anything."