Joseph “Jo Mersa” Marley, the grandson of reggae legend Bob Marley and son of Grammy Award-winning musician Stephen Marley and a well-regarded reggae artist in his own right, has died at the age of 31, US media reported.
A representative of Jamaican-born Marley confirmed his death to Rolling Stone, but did not give a cause. WZPP Radio in Miami, where the artist spent much of his life, reported that he was found in a vehicle after suffering an asthma attack on Tuesday.
Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness said in a tweet that he was “deeply saddened” by news of the death, and offered his condolences to Marley’s parents, Stephen and Kerry.
“My heartfelt sympathies to Joseph’s friends and associates and to the Reggae music fraternity and fans everywhere,” he added, calling Marley’s passing “a huge loss to the music as we look to the next generation.”
Marley released his debut album “Comfortable” in 2016, following it up with “Eternal” in 2021.
In a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone, Marley described growing up surrounded by musicians, including his father and his uncle Ziggy.
“It was a very magical thing, seeing those people come around to the house and how the whole work process would happen,” he said at the time. “I would come home and try to do homework, but I’d end up getting distracted and go peek in the studio.”
He also said that despite his musical pedigree, he had wanted to chart his own path.
“I am one of the new generation of Marleys, but I am still experimenting at the same time,” he told the outlet. “My plan is to do something new with my roots.”
WZPP reported that Marley is survived by a wife and daughter.