Sunday 26 May 2019

Bob Marley tapes discovered in damp basement up for auction

Bob Marley And The Wailers stayed in the hotel in the mid-1970s.

A Bob Marley recording (David Ryder Prangley)
A Bob Marley recording (David Ryder Prangley)

By Sherna Noah, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

A cache of Bob Marley recordings discovered during the clearance of a hotel basement are going under the hammer.

The live recordings, including hits such as No Woman No Cry, Is This Love and Exodus, sat in the damp room for more than 40 years.

Bob Marley And The Wailers stayed in the hotel in the mid-1970s.

Recorded at The Lyceum and Rainbow in London and the Pavillon Baltard in Paris in the 1970s, they were discovered – severely water damaged – in 2017 in cardboard box files.

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Bob Marley (PA)

The reel-to-reel analogue tapes, previously dubbed “the lost masters”,  had “gunk oozing from almost every inch” when they were found at the hotel in Little Venice, London.

Sound technician Martin Nichols said the tapes “were covered in mould and had clearly suffered massive water damage”.

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The tapes were found in cardboard box files (David Ryder Prangley)

“This was without a doubt – one of the most difficult projects I’ve ever tackled – but it was also a labour of love,” he said.

The tapes were rescued by Marley fan Joe Gatt, who received a call from a friend saying he had found what appeared to be some old recordings.

Auctioneer Paul Fairweather said: “These iconic recordings are from a point in time when Bob Marley was really at his peak and with him having such a huge fan base, we expect there will be worldwide interest.”

The tapes will go under the hammer at Omega Auctions in Liverpool on May 21 and are expected to fetch £50,000 per lot.

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