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The Unseen Bob Marley

Rare images of the legend

The Unseen Bob Marley

The idea of behind-the-scenes photos of famous faces is that you catch them off-guard and relaxed, away from the public eye.

However, that’s practically impossible to do for Bob Marley, one of the most relaxed men in history. Unfeasibly calm seemed to be his default setting.

But a new book of pictures taken by Kim Gottlieb-Walker in 1975 and 1976 — the ‘golden age’ of reggae — actually reveals a less chilled side to Marley.

The photojournalist’s images include a tense-looking Tuff Gong (Marley’s nickname) as he prepares to tape his first US TV performance, and appearing tired and agitated as he deals with the press at the Sunset Marquis hotel in Hollywood.

It isn’t all professional pensiveness, though. The book also shows Marley indulging in one of his great loves: football (see today's ShortList). We also get to see Marley combining professional duties with pleasure. He’s seen sampling a huge mound of herbs for a photoshoot. ‘Kid in a candy store’ doesn’t begin to express the delight on Marley’s face.

Bob Marley And The Golden Age Of Reggae is out on 26 October, priced £24.99 (Titan Books)