The Many Children of Bob Marley

Reggae legend Bob Marley had 11 acknowledged children with seven different mothers before dying in 1981 at age 36. He had three children with his wife Rita Marley, and he adopted her two children from previous relationships. Like other famous musicians, Marley is rumored to have fathered more than the 11 children officially acknowledged by the late singer's estate, leaving such claims largely unsubstantiated.

Like any large family, Bob Marley's children have gone on to a wide variety of pursuits in their adult lives. Some, like Marley's first son Ziggy, have followed in their father's footsteps. Others have stayed out of the spotlight or chosen other ways to honor their father's legacy. 

of 11

Sharon (Born Nov. 23, 1964)

Rita Marley With Her Children In Central Park, New York City.


Michel Delsol / Getty Images

Sharon (now Sharon Marley Prendergast) was Rita's daughter from a previous marriage. She was a long-time member of The Melody Makers, founded in 1979 by her siblings Ziggy, Stephen, and Cedella. Although she left the Melody Makers, Marley continues to perform her own work. She is also a community organizer and activist, as well as the curator of the Bob Marley Museum in Kingston, Jamaica.

of 11

Cedella (Born Aug. 23, 1967)

Cedella Marley -- Celebrities Visit SiriusXM Studios, August 31, 2015. Astrid Stawiarz / Getty Images

Cedella Marley was the first-born daughter of Bob and Rita Marley. After leaving The Melody Makers, Cedella Marley pursued a second career in fashion. She designed the uniforms for the 2012 Jamaican Olympic team and has also designed for Puma and Barneys New York.

of 11

David aka Ziggy (Born Oct. 17, 1968)

Ziggy Marley -- Ben & Jerry's Hosts One Love Session. Jerritt Clark / Getty Images

Born David Nesta in 1968, Bob Marley's eldest son has earned musical acclaim of his own, first with The Melody Makers and later as a solo artist. He's won five Grammy Awards in his career, written the theme song for the PBS kids' show "Arthur," and even released a comic book, "Marijuanaman." Marley has said he gave himself the nickname of Ziggy after the David Bowie album "Ziggy Stardust," though biographers credit Marley's dad with giving him the nickname.

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Stephen (Born April 20, 1972)

Stephen Marley -- Kaya Fest. WireImage / Getty Images

Stephen is the second son of Bob and Rita Marley. He is an eight-time Grammy-winning musician and record producer who has worked with his siblings (both with The Melody Makers and on some of their solo projects) as well as artists such as The Fugees, Michael Franti, and Nelly.

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Robert (Born May 16, 1972)

'Marley' Los Angeles Premiere, April 17, 2012
Ziggy Marley, Robert "Robbie" Marley, Snoop Dogg, Rohan Marley.

 Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Robert was born to Bob Marley and Pat Williams. Having chosen to lead a private life, there is little public information about him.

of 11

Rohan (May 19, 1972)

Rohan Marley -- CES 2016 At The House Of Marley. Getty Images for House of Marley / Getty Images

Born in 1972 to Bob Marley and Janet Hunt, Rohan Marley is a musician, a former collegiate and professional football player (for the University of Miami and later the Canadian Football League's Ottawa Rough Riders), and an entrepreneur who co-founded the Tuff Gong clothing line and the Marley Coffee business. He has five children with singer and actress Lauryn Hill.

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Karen (Born 1973)

Born to Bob Marley and Janet Bowen, Karen has kept her life out of the public eye.

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Stephanie (Aug. 17, 1974)

Stephanie is Rita's daughter by a prior relationship; her father is unknown. She pursued the business side of the family's music business and directs the Marley Resort and Spa, a former family vacation home in Nassau, the Bahamas, that has been converted into a luxury vacation resort.

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Julian (Born June 4, 1975)

Julian Marley -- 2016 Riot Fest Denver. WireImage / Getty Images

The son of Lucy Pounder, Julian has also followed in his father's musical steps. He has performed with siblings Ziggy, Stephen, and Damian, and he is a Grammy Award-nominated musician in his own right. Like his father, Julian Marley is a devout Rastafarian.

of 11

Ky-Mani (Born Feb. 26, 1976)

Ky-Mani Marley performs during Reggae On The Mountain 2015 on July 26, 2015 in Topanga, California. Christopher Polk/Getty Images

Born in 1976 to table tennis champion Anita Belnavis, Ky-Mani is a popular reggae and dancehall musician and a film actor who starred in the Jamaican films "One Love" and "Shotta." He has worked with rap musicians Shaggy and Young Buck, among others.

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Damian aka Junior Gong (Born July 21, 1978)

Damian "Junior Gong" Marley -- 2017 ONE Music Fest. FilmMagic / Getty Images

Bob's youngest son was born to Cindy Breakspeare, a former Miss World, and a respected jazz musician. Damian, nicknamed "Junior Gong," is a reggae musician who has won three Grammy Awards. He's worked with an impressive array of artists, including Nas, Mick Jagger, and Skrillex.

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