Today’s song has been chosen to commemorate the awarding of the Order of the Companions of OR Tambo to Jerry Dammers for writing the song Nelson Mandela (also known as Free Nelson Mandela) and for his involvement with Artists Against Apartheid on Sunday.
The Special AKA was a British band that developed out of The Specials. At this time, in addition to Dammers, the band featured Stan Campbell on lead vocals, Molly and Polly Jackson on backing vocals, and Claudia Fontaine and Caron Wheeler singing the chorus.
The Order of the Companions of OR Tambo is an honour awarded by the President of South Africa to foreign citizens who have promoted South African interests through co-operation, solidarity and support. It will be awarded to Jerry Dammers on Sunday 27 April, 2014 for writing the song Nelson Mandela and for his involvement with Artists Against Apartheid.
Nelson Mandela was originally released as a single in 1984 and was a protest against the imprisonment of Nelson Mandela by the South African government for fighting against apartheid. It immediately became a hit in the UK and across Europe. It was banned in South Africa but became an anthem of the anti-apartheid movement. Nelson Mandela was one of the most successful protest songs ever written.
You can buy Nelson Mandela on iTunes.