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Marleys swop reggae for road trip

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iol tonight 02 nov 11 Ziggy Marley In SA pic

When you are the son of a legend such as Bob Marley, whose music still lives more than three decades after his death, it is hard to make something out of your life without being compared to your father.

This has been the story of all of Marley’s sons, but most of them chose to make music anyway. While they may not have surpassed the father’s musical accomplishments, the Marley brothers have ensured that the family name is still held in high regard through their professional and personal lives.

Stephen, Damian, Ky-Mani, Ziggy, Rohan and Robert Marley have all had their go at music. Though kids these days may probably know Damian (aka Junior Gong) as the hot thing, big brother Ziggy has been making music for decades and even won a Grammy.

So, having seemingly accomplished all that can be done in the music industry, it is only appropriate that Marley’s first-born son leaves the reggae behind for a bit to venture into television.

Coming to your screen tonight will be his first production, Marley Africa Road Trip, a travel documentary that follows him, Rohan and Robert.

With the show premiering on Discovery, Ziggy took time out to speak to Tonight about it.

“All three of us are fans of motorcycles and riding a motorcycle… the experience is very mental. It’s very conscious. You have to be aware and we like that, you know. We did the trip on bikes just to be open to the elements and to the people,” he explained.

The brothers travel the South African countryside on their bikes. It is the ultimate survivor’s dream as they attempt to live under the stars and ride from dusk till dawn while exploring the land.

“It’s a much more open way to travel,” he said, referring to their preferred mode of transportation.

“You get a much more real experience being on a motorcycle travelling through a country than you would in a car, or any other way, or by any other means.

“We stopped when we felt like it and we got involved with the communities wherever we stopped. It was just a way to have a more open and not-so-insulated view of the land.

“I think being on a motorcycle gave us that opportunity and the freedom to explore places and people we probably wouldn’t if we were just driving in a car.”

Whenever an outsider makes a first visit to the country it is always interesting to hear their views on the place before the visit. Ziggy had an interesting take on the subject.

“It was my first time to South Africa and I was kind of, I wouldn’t say surprised, but I felt very good about what I saw because before we made the trip I remember there was some sceptical news about how you need to get a vest for knife attacks and things like that because South Africa is so dangerous. So I think this film will show Africa in a light that I think a lot of people who have never been here before don’t really know of, and I think that’s good for Africa,” he said.

Ziggy could have shot this production with anyone else, but he chose to do so with Rohan and Robert, for specific reasons.

“We work well together but we are kind of different, you know what I mean?” he asked, but I didn’t know what he meant so he carried on.

“I am really into the adventure stuff and my brother Rohan is not so much into it. He doesn’t like camping and things like that.

“Robbie is… he’s like the most quiet one of us all, so it was interesting.

“The trip showed different sides of us I think, because look, I like roughing it, but Rohan ended up driving in a Rolls-Royce at one point. I thought we were supposed to be on bikes, roughing it, but he would rather be in a Rolls-Royce. So I gave him some attitude about that, you know, but I mean, we have differences, but we get on together well,” he said, defining the typical sibling rivalries.

If you could digest Kim Kardashian and her sisters, then you would enjoy this as the brothers give a bit of themselves, away from the stage or studio.

lMarley Africa Road Trip airs today at 9.05pm on Discovery World (channel 250).

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