Get Up, Stand Up

Get Up, Stand Up

Infobox Single
Name = Get Up, Stand Up

Artist = Bob Marley
from Album = Burnin'
A-side =
B-side =
Released = 1973
Format = 12"
Recorded = Harry J. Studios, Kingston, Jamaica, April 1973
Genre = Reggae
Length = 3:16
Label = Tuff Gong Records/Island Records
Writer = Bob Marley,Peter Tosh
Producer = Chris Blackwell and The Wailers
Certification =
Chart position =
Last single = |
This single = Get Up, Stand Up
Next single = "Hallelujah Time"

"Get Up, Stand Up" is a reggae song written by Bob Marley and Peter Tosh.

The song originally appeared on The Wailers 1973 album "Burnin'". It was recorded and played live in numerous versions by The Wailers and Bob Marley & The Wailers, along with solo versions by Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer. It was later included on the compilations "Legend" and "Rebel Music", among others.

Premise and usage in concerts

Although some assume that the song is a simple call to people all over the world and Rastafarians in particular to stop allowing themselves to be abused and mistreated, the song actually harkens to a fundamental Rastafarian belief: that the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie I (Ras Tafari) was, in fact, God incarnate. This should be distinguished from a "second coming" of the Son of God. Rather, the Rastafarians believe that Haile Selassie was God on the earth, not the Son, not a prophet.

Thus, the lyrics of the song specifically point to a key difference between the Rastafarian faith and that of mainstream Christianity: where mainstream Christianity preaches that to achieve eternal salvation one must accept Jesus Christ as the Son of God who died for one's sins and as one's personal lord and savior, Peter Tosh's lyrics that "Almighty God is a living man" point to the belief that worship of Selassie as God on Earth is the true way to praise God. The lyrics prior to this directly address corruption in early Christian sects, Catholicism in particular, with the reference to "isms" and "schisms," where, for example, Middle Ages political/religious struggles caused factions to recognize different popes at the same time. Further, the reference to "Die and go to heaven in Jesus' name" rejects religious zealotry and violence in the name of "God" or "Jesus" and, rather, calls people (Rastafarians in particular) to recognize and praise Selassie as God (Heaven) on the Earth. Other lyrics also indicate the belief that mainstream Christianity is incomplete in this regard: "Half the story has never been told," etc.

The song's strong and concise lyrical content has also clearly made it one of Marley's (and Tosh's, in his solo career) more political songs.

The song was frequently performed at Marley's concerts, often as the last song. "Get Up, Stand Up" was also the last song Marley ever performed on stage, on September 23, 1980 at the Stanley Theatre in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Many believeFact|date=June 2007 the lyrical stanza provided in the original version by Peter Tosh proved to be influential as one of the first raps incorporated before Hip Hop's official appearance in musical culture:Fact|date=June 2007

:We're sick and tired of your ism and schism game:Die and go to heaven in Jesus' name, Lord:We know and we understand:Almighty God is a living man:You can fool some people sometimes:But you can't fool all the people all the time:So now we see the light:We gonna stand up for our right


*The song was parodied on an episode of the television series Futurama, entitled The Route of All Evil. In the episode, the character Hermes alters the lyrics of the song by singing "Stamp it, file it, send it over night."
*The song is found on Toots & the Maytals' LP Pass the Pipe. Although sung with completely different lyrics and melody, the songwriting credit is given to the Wailers.
*The song was remixed with Welcome to Jamrock by Marley's son Damian for his album of the same name and later included on the Grand Theft Auto IV soundtrack.


*cite web|url=|title=Slippin' Into Darkness|work=Songfacts.|accessdate=2007-03-21
*cite web|url=|title=Get Up, Stand Up lyrics by Bob Marley|accessdate=2008-05-05

External links

* [ Recording history of "Get Up, Stand Up"] at "The 60's Jamaican Music Reference".

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