Graphic designer, Neville Garrick, whose creativity was responsible for some of Bob Marley’s most famous album covers, died November 14 in Los Angeles at age 73. Garrick’s family revealed in a statement that cancer was the cause of death.
In October, he was awarded the Order of Distinction, Jamaica’s sixth-highest honor, but was unable to travel to Jamaica for the ceremony because of illness.
The Kingston-born Garrick’s first Marley album cover was ‘Rastaman Vibration’, the 1976 set that was the Rastafarian singer’s commercial breakthrough. Done on burlap, it shows a pensive Marley in a military jacket. In August, ‘Rastaman Vibration’ was named at number 22 on Billboard Magazine’s Best Album Covers of All Time.
Garrick also designed jackets for Marley albums such as ‘Exodus’, ‘Kaya’, ‘Survival’ and ‘Confrontation’. His distinctive touches can be seen on albums by Bunny Wailer (‘Blackheart Man’), Peter Tosh (‘No Nuclear War’), Burning Spear (‘Man in The Hills’) and ‘Earth Crisis’ by Steel Pulse.
A graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles, Garrick met Marley in 1974 while he was the art director for the Daily News newspaper in Kingston. They were introduced by Alan Cole, Marley’s manager and a schoolmate of Garrick’s.
Marley died in May 1981, shortly after which Garrick was appointed to head the newly formed Bob Marley Foundation. He was a consultant for the movie, ‘Bob Marley: One Love’, scheduled for release in February.