14. Artists United Against Apartheid – “Sun City”

This is one of the first albums I ever purchased. It came out way back in 1985 – an era when pop stars regularly congregated to belt out a tune in unison that would help save the starving.

aaa-suncity1AUAA were organised by Little Stevie (of Sopranos fame) and aimed to end apartheid in South Africa. Unlike the more saccharine Bandaid mobs, this lot were somewhat more credible rappers and rockers (see a list here). And the other difference is that apartheid did end, and hunger hasn’t, so we have a clear winner!

The album is a lot of fun. Two versions of the Sun City track appear. I guess when you have that many big names involved, you need two goes to squeeze in their output. There is another collaborative effort called Let Me See Your ID which I always preferred, mainly because it features some excellent Gil Scott Heron spoken word, plus The Fat Boys who are “going to stop apartheid in their own way”. The remainder of the album is jazzy sound-collages exposing the horrors and struggle, plus a track from Bono (of course) which is more of a horrible struggle 🙂

So, as is becoming a weekly treat, here’s a clip (with loads of cool commentary interspersed):

File under: Righteous rapping

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