Ziggy Marley on the inspiration for his new album: ‘I am frustrated with humanity at the moment’

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More than the critical acclaim and packed shows, a sure sign of a good Ziggy Marley album is the seal of approval from the artist himself.

And on that score, his new record, the feisty Rebellion Rises, is one of his best. As Marley explains in an exclusive interview with The National hours before a sold-out show in Amsterdam – he rarely gives a nod to his own work. “This latest one is the only album that I enjoy listening to,” the 49-year-old Marley tells us.

“The others, not so much, as I pick up certain things here and there that may annoy me, but this new one is the one that I can just pick up and listen to all by myself.” Interestingly, one of the reasons for Marley’s positivity about Rebellion Rises is how irate it sounds.

Indeed, after nearly three decades of sunny reggae melodies married to ­introspective lyrics, this time Marley looks outward at the havoc wreaking the world today, and he is not happy with what he sees.

“This is me getting a lot of things off my chest for this record,” he says. “In the past, I made up my mind that I don’t want to sing about the world and instead focus on the personal and spiritual. But to be honest, I am frustrated with humanity at the moment. I am frustrated at how the powers have taken advantage of us and the lack of resistance to what I consider is the destruction of our humanity.”

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