Rodney was born in Saint Ann's Bay, Saint Ann, Jamaica, as were reggae singer Bob Marley and political activist Marcus Garvey who both had a great influence on Rodney's life: Garvey in his philosophy, which Burning Spear greatly took to, and Marley in directly helping Burning Spear get started in the music industry (by some accounts) by introducing him to Clement Dodd. Rodney met Marley at the latter's farm in 1969, and having told him that he wanted to get into the music business, Marley advised him to start at Dodd's Studio One label. Reggae singer Larry Marshall claimed that it was he, while visiting St. Ann's Bay with Jackie Mittoo, who was approached by Rodney, and gave him this advice, and arranged the introduction
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