DAMIAN 'Junior Gong' Marley has given an explanation for the indifferent Bob Marley tribute at the February 10 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. The segment, which featured American pop artiste Bruno Mars, rock icon Sting, pop singer Rihanna along with Ziggy and Damian Marley, drew mixed reaction.
Some felt it was great for Jamaica, reggae and the Marley brand to be featured so highly at music's biggest showpiece. Others thought it was not much of a Marley tribute since Bruno Mars and Sting performed their own songs.
"We were approached by Bruno Mars who asked us to be part of his performance. Once the Grammy people heard about it they then decided to call it a Bob Marley tribute at the last minute... we really didn't have a problem as it really put us out there and we were honoured to be on the Grammy stage," Marley told the Sunday Observer.
His comments come as he prepares to promote Set up Shop, the album on the Ghetto Youths International label owned by he and his brothers Julian and Stephen. It is available digitally on iTunes.
Interestingly, the 14-track compilation features tracks by two third generation Marleys. Stephen's eldest son Jo Mersa appears on two tracks Bad So and Comfortable; while Ziggy's eldest son, Daniel Bambaata Marley contributes Treat You Right.
"What wi really trying to do is use this album as a platform to expose the artistes on the label. As you will realise some of the songs have already been released, but by including them with newer tracks from other artistes who are also in the camp, people can go on getting familiar," Marley explained.
Two of his popular songs, Set Up Shop and Affairs of the Heart, have been included to drive the album.
Wayne Marshall, Christopher Ellis (son of Alton Ellis), Black-Am-I and Julian Marley also have songs on Set Up Shop.