A soulful grin overwhelms Ziggy Marley's face, his eyes, just like his dad's eyes, attentive, and willingly present for the conversation that has been struck around a circular table for two just behind the concert stage at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center. As a journalistic gratitude is professionally offered for a few minutes to speak with a legend, his eyes immediately let it be known that this is not really about a moment of his time being stripped from his life, or his touring schedule, or his sacred, free, not on stage, Ziggy time.
"It's all good brother," Ziggy offers with a big smile and a handshake.
Three of the Marley kids have introduced critically acclaimed albums this year, Stephen Marley, with Mind Control, Ki-Mani Marley with Many More Roads, and Ziggy with Love Is My Religion. Some may wonder if it may be planned, or a coincidence, or if there is any sort of sibling type musical rivalry within this legendary clan of Marley kids.
"Coincidence?" Ziggy sits back and ponders. "It's not a coincidence. Oh no!" He confidently locks his hands behind his head. "I have the best music! You know, we all compete. Everyone have, you know, their own unique, uh, flavor, like, and style. Everyone have their own identity. Identity that they put into their own kind of music."
Within a few moments of sitting down with Ziggy it is apparent that an obviously philosophical, and humanistic element is present within all of his dialogue. It seems to have him at peace with himself and comfortable instilling the same within his touring environment, his music, and his life.
With his busy schedule of touring, recording, and traveling between all of the obligations that go along with being the oldest son of a reggae legend, even Ziggy makes a point of finding time for family to get together.
"We don't need a reunion because we are always united." He explains. "We get together anytime. You know, there's no special time to get together." It would seem that being Bob Marley's oldest son, being a reggae legend in his own right, having a new hit album, sitting under the setting sun in Maui while on a hugely successful world tour, that it would be Ziggy Marley to be pretty sweet, and potentially garner an air of self importance.
"Well, you know, it's not being Ziggy Marley, it's being a good human you know?"
As he stares ahead thinking either about what he has just offered, or what is soon to be revealed, a "Ziggyism" (uncoined; long silent seconds preceding any and all responses), has laid itself down on the table spread eagle.
"A name is a name you know?" He reveals after another long pause.
An entourage of his band members have accumulated and are eavesdropping a few tables to his left. Ziggy appears amused by their intreest in this conversation.
His new album, Love Is My Religion, has heralded worldwide acclaim. Yet the acclaim is not what is important in this odyssey of his current musical motivation. Love. Love is what it seems Ziggy thinks humanity needs in order to be truly human in its clearest sense.
"It's (love) the oldest religion that was produced by mankind. It was the foundation of all things. It was the foundation of the concept of God."
Through his music Ziggy has a platform with which he can spread the gospel of love.
"Music affects everything.Vibration. Remember, music is vibration. Everything living is affected by vibration." Another long silence ensues before he relieves the tension with his next thought. "But corrupted and pushed aside by man, who is imperfect and never had the full capacity to understand the fullness of the Almighty. And so them found something called religion. And them found something called sects, and, not sex, S.E.C.T.S., and denomination. And divide the people. But love is all that's truth. The First Truth."
On the topic of love a segue to his childhood and the reggae legend, Peter Tosh, is brought up, specifically what kind of person Peter was when Ziggy was a young kid member of the now famous Melody Makers, and what he remembers most during that period of time that produced the essential foundation for reggae music on a global level.
"Peter was a revolutionary, military, militant. Love him. Love him." Ziggy pronounces as the most pleasant and inner joy like smile envelops his now animated conversational presence. "Peter was you know, Peter was lovely. When we was kids Peter used to just ride around on his unicycle."
Ziggy has now stood up, a large backpack clinging to his Tuff Gong jacket, and has his arms above his head and is thrusting his knees in the air as though he is Peter Tosh riding a unicycle down a bumpy gravel road in Kingston, Jamaica.
"When every time he would come to the house, you know, he'd be riding a unicycle, you know."
Ziggy's entourage has garnered a few more individuals and at this point the giggles exceed the questions, and Ziggy seems to be enjoying the participation.
As the allotted time has begun to expire, the mention that his web site gives him an address in Beverly Hills, draws a chuckle from the peanut gallery and an out loud laugh from Ziggy.
"World wide." He jovially retorts. "World wide. World wide."
And so it is. Ziggy and his Gospel of Love are currently World Wide.