Jamaican American reggae singer Jo Mersa Marley, the grandson of the legendary Bob Marley, was found dead in his vehichle. He was 31 years old.
According to a tweet by journalist Abka Fitz-Henley on Tuesday, Dec 27, 2022, Jo Mersa was found unresponsive in his vehicle in South Florida, though no exact location was given. He apparently succumbed to complications associated with asthma, radio station WZPP reported.
Jo’Mersa leaves behind a wife and daughter.
Joseph “Jo Mersa” Marley is the product of a musical family dynasty. His grandfather, the venerated Bob Marley, was a pioneer in the reggae movement and known for songs including “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright,” “Get Up, Stand Up,” “Is This Love,” “I Shot the Sheriff,” “No Woman, No Cry” and many, many more.
Bob Marley also died very young, succumbing to the effects of melanoma at only 36. He left behind 11 children with seven different women.
Jo Mersa’s father and uncle are also famous reggae singers Stephen and Ziggy Marley, respectively, and he had a sister named Mystic Marley.
According to the Jamaica Observer, Jo’Mersa was reared in Jamaica before moving to South Floria during high school. He then studied engineering at Miami Dade College before releasing an album, Comfortable, in 2014 that included the title track.
Jo Mersa also told the Jamaica Observer that it was a challenge to live up to his father’s legacy.
“My father has created a legacy by putting out songs with meaning,” he said. “It’s something I have to live up to.”
He did seem to contradict himself, however, in another interview that same year about adding to the family musical empire.
“There’s things that you have to overcome and things you just have to do and that’s how it is. We have to go through life you know? There’s no pressure for me,” he told the entertainment site The Pier. “I give thanks for being a Marley. I’m very appreciative and thankful that I am born where I am born and put where God has decided. I’m very thankful about it and proud.”