King of Reggae, Robert Nesta “Bob” Marley and The Wailers released No Woman, No Cry in 1974 through the studio album Natty Dread, but his 1975 album, ‘Live!’, the greatest hits compilation Legend made the song more popular.
“No woman no cry, I remember when we use to sit, in the government yard in Trenchtown, And then Georgie would make the fire lights, as it was, log would burnin' through the nights. Then we would cook cornmeal porridge, of which I'll share with you. My fear is my only courage, so I've got to push on thru, oh, while I'm gone ...” These lyrics are quite inspiring. If one is passing through a challenging moment, it would teach you to keep pushing forward because challenges would only last for a moment.
Originally, the song is "No, Woman, Nuh cry." According to Thom - Plymouth, United Kingdom, Nuh is Jamacian word for "don't," so what Marley meant by the lyric is No, Woman, Don't cry... It is believed that Marley dedicated this song to his wife, Rita Marley, who was solidly behind him in both time of hardship and affluence, especially, when they were living in a slum. So he was assuring her that things would alright.
Rita played the role of a back-up singer for Marley in this song including two other women namely: Judy Mowatt and Marcia Griffiths.
Born February, 1945, this Jamaican singer, songwriter and musician, though dead still lives on through the legacy he left behind, which are his songs. His sojourn in music world for 18 years (1963 – 1981) brought both spiritual and mental emancipation from slavery to his fans. His Rastafari movement and ideology will never fade as his faithful all over the world are still adhering to his beliefs. He died of cancer in 1981 at the age of 36. It is believed that he might have written No Woman, No Cry, but songwriter credits were given to Vincent Ford, a friend of Marley who ran a soup kitchen in Trenchtown, the ghetto of Kingston, Jamaica where Marley grew up and the royalty checks received by Ford ensured the survival and continual running of his soup kitchen.
It is shocking to know that some men misinterpreted this song to mean “Without women, men won’t cry, meaning women are the cause of men’s tears. Marley used this song to encourage men to appreciate their wives.
The Prophet, (as some of his fans called him), loved playing guitar, so he used instruments like piano, guitar and band moderately, that is why his voice was audible and people can easily understand and sing along whenever this song is being played.
But it is a bit surprising that he sang: “...Oh, little sister, don't she'd no tears, No woman, no cry.” Someone may think he was referring to his sister, not Rita his wife. His other songs include Redemption Song, One Love One Heart, Is This Love and Three Little Birds.