On January 29, 2016, as part of Martin Luther King JR Celebration, the BPC show—So Much Things to Say: The Berklee Bob Marley ensemble directed by Matt Jenson featured Vivien Goldman, who was the first journalist to introduce mass white audiences to the Rasta sounds of Bob Marley.
The concert opened with Matt Jenson’s song Must Be Free, followed by One Drop, Trenchtown Rock, Natty Dread, Rat Race, Positive Vibration, So Much Things to Say, The Heathen, No Woman No Cry, Exodus, Get Up Stand Up.
Vivien Goldman is a writer, broadcaster and post-punk musician. She has been dubbed The Punk Professor by the BBC, as she teaches on Punk, Reggae and Bob Marley at NYU’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, Tisch School of the Arts. New York University’s Fales Library recently acquired her archive as the Vivien Goldman Punk and Reggae Collection. Shortly after leaving University in her native Britain, Goldman worked at Island Records as Jamaican musician Bob Marley’s PR for seven crucial months during which he recorded the live “No Women, No cry” that boosted his career to another level. On leaving island, Goldman became a music journalist and continued working with Marley as his chief chronicler outside Jamaica. You can check out more information on her website: www.viviengoldman.com
After the concert, Ms. Goldman came to the lobby for her book signing. In her book: the book of exodus, she not only shows us the making and meaning of Bob Marley and the Wailers’ Album of the century, but “takes us through the history of Jamaican music, Marley’s own personal journey from he Trench Town ghetto to his status as global superstar, as well as Marley’s deep spiritual practice of Rastafari and the roots of this religion. Goldman also traces the biblical themes of the Exodus story, and its practical relevance to us today, through various other art forms, leading up to and culminating with Exodus.”
The director of the Bob Marley ensemble, Matt Jenson, is an associate professor of piano at Berklee where, in addition to the Marley class, he teaches private instruction and labs on Latin piano and Hammond organ playing. He complete a masters degree in jazz piano from the New England Conservatory of Music (1992) and began his career performing with Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters, Johnny Adams, Mighty Sam McClain, Cyril Lance, Johnny Neel and fellow faculty guitarist Julien Kasper and Thaddeus Hogarth.
Matt created the “Music and Life of Bob Marley” class as an organic extension of his life-long passion for consciousness raising, truth telling and healing through music. Not only do the band picked students in the class/ensemble learn to play Marly’s music, but they learn about his life and message that continue to be a catalyst for revolutionary change, something the world is in desperate need of as we apply with climate change, economic inequality and racism across the globe.