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Wednesday, April 08 2015 21:46

Preview - New Children's Album, CELEBRATING BOB MARLEY, Set for April 28 Release...

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There is absolutely no way that I can post a news item relating to Bob Marley on this website without making something very clear: I do not like the music of Bob Marley. This is something that I've mentioned in passing, and truthfully, I get pitched Marley-related topics (and reggae in general) pretty frequently, and usually don't post them. Along with Marley, I tend to also not like most of the artists he's inspired, and it's solely because his particular brand of reggae just has that "nails on a chalkboard" vibe for me... though I'd actually much rather hear genuine nails on a chalkboard. In fact, Bob Marley would be on my "Top Five Most Disliked Artists of All-Time" list, should I ever publish one. That said (and perhaps it might even diminish the good in the rest of this article), there is a new, kid-centric take on the music of Bob Marley that is coming out on April 28, and should that be your bag - you just might want to check it out with your little ones. I appreciate that Marley's music holds a very positive message for many, but listening to it is just audio torture for me. Details below...

Official Announcement: Celebrating Bob Marley

Bob MarleyAs a part of the year-long Bob Marley 70th birthday celebration in 2015, Ziggy Marley’s Tuff Gong Worldwide has partnered with 1World Chorus to reimagine some of the Marley’s most timeless songs. Celebrating Bob Marley will be available on April 28, digitally via iTunes, Amazon and Tuff Gong Worldwide.

This ten-track collection was performed entirely by Aaron Nigel Smith’s 1World Chorus - a collaboration of children 7 to 18 years of age, from Kenya, Colombia, the United States and Jamaica. Judah Marley, 10 year old granddaughter of the late reggae icon, also makes a guest vocal appearance on “Bend Down Low.” Under Smith’s direction, these budding musicians performed everything from the first drumbeat to the last vocal take, tracking the album over 18 months in studios around the world. During the production process, the children strengthened their own musicianship and learned basic recording techniques.

Bob Marley loved sharing music with children: teaching his own kids, guiding them to form Ziggy Marley & Melody Makers, and penning their first song “Children Playing in the Streets.” Marley's affinity for children also shines through in the timeless “Is This Love” video from 1978 (filmed in London and featuring supermodel Naomi Campbell as a 7 year old). Celebrate Bob Marley reinforces how deeply Marley's musical imprint and message of “One Love” continues to reach, resonating with kids of all ages.

In addition to providing free music workshops to schools participating in this special project, a portion of sales will benefit these music programs. Further, 1World Chorus has partnered with some of the nation's leading companies to provide ongoing support to the project. Remo Drums, Martin Guitars and Guitar Center have all donated musical instructions to the schools, with Keen Footwear donating socks and shoes to the students. Celebrating Bob Marley  will be available for sale at all Aaron Nigel Smith concerts this spring and summer, including his Rox in Sox literacy and music festival in Las Vegas on April 11th. 

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade as Publisher of The Rock Father Magazine, he joined Adventure Publishing Group as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider—a destination for all things pop culture. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 25 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, WGN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, BusinessWire, Babble, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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