Peter Gabriel ‎– Biko

Charisma ‎– CB 370
Vinyl, 7", Single, 33 ⅓ RPM

Tracklist Hide Credits

A Biko
Written-By – Gabriel*
B1 Shosholoza
Arranged By – Gray*, Egnos*, Gabriel*Written-By – Traditional
B2 Jetzt Kommt Die Flut
Written-By – Gabriel*



This is a 7" pressing, although it has the same catalogue number as the 12".
B2 is a German version of "Here Comes The Flood".

A & B2: Peter Gabriel Ltd./Hit & Run Music Pub Ltd
B1: Diplomat Music
℗ 1980 Charisma Records Ltd
Original sound recording made by Charisma Records Ltd
Marketed and distributed by Phonogram Ltd.
Track durations not listed on the release.

From the back cover:

Bantu Stephen Biko was a young South African leader who died in 1977 as a result of injuries received during interrogations by the South African Security Police. For further information, I would suggest the book 'Biko' by Donald Woods on Penguin.

Why the song:
I believe Steve Biko was very important. He could have been a very positive force in Africa and a leader young people all over the world could have identified with.

When I heard of Steve Biko's detention on the radio, I was sure that publicity would protect him. World attention had been attracted to the large number of prison suicides: slipping in showers, jumping from windows and hanging . . . I was shocked one breakfast to hear of his death and wrote some thoughts down in my diary which were to be the start of the lyrics two years later.

Why put it out differently:
Some people have questioned the motive for putting this out as a 12" and a single when two other singles have been taken off the album.

Firstly I wanted the song to be available to anyone who did not want to spend the money for an album, secondly I would like to hear it on the radio and thirdly, since recording it in another language I have approached the mix differently and wanted to have an alternate version available in English. The vocal track has been re-recorded and the track re-mixed.

What 'Shosholoza' means:
Shosholoza (Go in Peace) was one of the tracks off the soundtrack lp 'Dingaka' that inspired the direction for the music of the song 'Biko'. The original is an unaccompanied chant to which I have added an arrangement and a new rhythmic section of the song.

Thanks to Mercury Records Inc. for permission to use "Shosholoza".

The proceeds of this song go to the Steve Biko Black Consciousness Movement. Thanks to Charisma Records for their contribution.

Re-recorded and re-mixed at Crescent Studios, Bath.