500 Greatest Songs of All Time

66

Bob Marley and the Wailers, 'Redemption Song'

Writer: Marley
Producer: Chris Blackwell
Released: June '80, Island
Did not chart

Marley had already recorded a version of this freedom hymn with his band when Island Records' chief Blackwell suggested he try it as an acoustic-style folk tune. Inspired by the writings of Marcus Garvey, Marley's lyrics offer up music as an antidote to slavery, both mental and physical. "I would love to do more like that," Marley said a few months before his death, from cancer, at age 36 in 1981. As the final track on his final album, "Redemption Song" stands as his epitaph.

Appears on: Uprising (Island) 

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