Sorrow Tears and Blood
Fela Kuti Lyrics


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Eh-ya!
Everybody run run run
Eh-ya!
Everybody scatter scatter
Eh-ya!
Some people lost some bread
Eh-ya!
Someone nearly die
Eh-ya!
Someone just die
Eh-ya!
Police they come, army they come
Eh-ya!
Confusion everywhere

Eh-ya!
Everybody run run run
Eh-ya!
Everybody scatter scatter
Eh-ya!
Some people lost some bread
Eh-ya!
Someone nearly die
Eh-ya!
Someone just die
Eh-ya!
Police they come, army they come
Eh-ya!
Confusion everywhere

Eh-ya!
Seven minutes later
All don cool down, brother
Police don go away
Army don disappear
Them leave sorrow, tears and blood
Them regular trademark
Them leave sorrow, tears and blood
Them regular trademark
Them regular trademark
Them regular trademark

La la la la

My people self they fear too much
We fear for the thing we no see
We fear for the air around us
We fear to fight for freedom
We fear to fight for liberty
We fear to fight for justice
We fear to fight for happiness
We always get reason to fear:
We no wan die
We no wan wound
We no wan quench
We no wan go
I get one child
Mama dey for house
Papa dey for house
I wan build house
I don build house
I no want quench
I want enjoy
I no wan go
Ah!
So policeman go slap your face
You no go talk
Army man go whip your yansh
You go they look like donkey
Rhodesia they do them own
Our leaders they yab for nothing
South Africa they do them own

Them leave sorrow, tears and blood
Them regular trademark
Them regular trademark
Them regular trademark
Them regular trademark
Them regular trademark
Regular trademark
Them regular trademark
That is why

Eh-ya!
Everybody run run run
Eh-ya!
Everybody scatter scatter
Eh-ya!
Some people lost some bread
Eh-ya!
Someone nearly die
Eh-ya!
Someone just die
Eh-ya!
Police they come, army they come
Eh-ya!
Confusion everywhere

Ah, na so
Time go they go
Time no wait for nobody
Like that: choo, choo, choo, ah
But police go they come, army go they come




With confusion
In style like this

Overall Meaning

Fela Kuti's song, Sorrow Tears and Blood, is a socio-political commentary about the state of Nigeria at the time. The lyrics describe chaos and confusion caused by the police and army, resulting in loss of life, loss of property, and fear. Fela Kuti points out that people fear fighting for their freedom, liberty, justice, and happiness because they fear death or injury. The fear is intensified by the violence committed by the authorities like the police, army, and government.


Furthermore, the lyrics suggest that the violence is not limited to Nigeria; it is happening in other African countries. The line, "Rhodesia they do them own, Our leaders they yab for nothing, South Africa they do them own" shows this. Fela Kuti is calling for African unity against oppression and brutality.


The repetition of "Them leave sorrow, tears, and blood" reinforces the idea that this is not a one-time event, but a common occurrence. It has become a regular trademark of the police, army, and government.


One of the interesting facts about the song is that it was released in 1977, a year after 1000 soldiers were sent to the town of Afikpo in Nigeria to suppress riots that had erupted after a referendum. The soldiers reportedly killed over 200 people and destroyed property worth millions of dollars.


Another interesting fact is that the song was banned by the Nigerian government for fear that it would incite violence. Despite the ban, the song became popular, and two years later, Fela Kuti's house was raided by 1000 soldiers who attacked him and his family, burned his house, and threw his mother out of a window, leading to her death.


Line by Line Meaning

Eh-ya!
Starting cry to indicate something bad is happening


Everybody run run run
People are running away in fear


Everybody scatter scatter
People are scattering aimlessly


Some people lost some bread
Some people lost their money or possessions


Someone nearly die
Someone was almost killed


Someone just die
Someone has just been killed


Police they come, army they come
Police and army forces show up


Confusion everywhere
The situation is very chaotic and disorienting


Seven minutes later
After a short time passes


All don cool down, brother
Things have returned to normal, no need to be afraid anymore


Police don go away
Police have left the scene


Army don disappear
Army has left the scene as well


Them leave sorrow, tears and blood
People are left with sadness, grief, and injuries


Them regular trademark
This is a common occurrence


My people self they fear too much
We are very afraid


We fear for the thing we no see
We are afraid of the unknown


We fear for the air around us
We are afraid of our surroundings


We fear to fight for freedom
We're scared to fight for our rights and freedom


We fear to fight for liberty
We're scared to fight for independence


We fear to fight for justice
We're scared to fight for fairness


We fear to fight for happiness
We're scared to fight for our own happiness


We always get reason to fear:
We always find something to be scared of


We no wan die
We don't want to die


We no wan wound
We don't want to be injured


We no wan quench
We don't want to die out


We no wan go
We don't want to leave


I get one child
I have a child


Mama dey for house
My mother is at home


Papa dey for house
My father is at home


I wan build house
I want to build a house


I don build house
I have already built a house


I no want quench
I don't want to die out


I want enjoy
I want to enjoy life


I no wan go
I don't want to leave


Ah!
Exclamation of surprise


So policeman go slap your face
Police officers might slap you in the face


You no go talk
You won't be able to speak up against them


Army man go whip your yansh
Soldiers might whip you in the behind


You go they look like donkey
You will look foolish or beaten down


Rhodesia they do them own
Rhodesia is doing its own thing


Our leaders they yab for nothing
Our leaders criticize each other for no reason


South Africa they do them own
South Africa is doing its own thing as well


Time go they go
Time keeps moving forward


Time no wait for nobody
Time doesn't wait for anyone


In style like this
In this manner




Lyrics ยฉ F.K.O. Music, BMG Rights Management, EMI MUSIC PUBLISHING FRANCE, BMG VM MUSIC FRANCE
Written by: Fela Anikulapo Kuti

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Comments from YouTube:

@greencerei

Burna Boy has studied quite a lot Fela to mimic his voice to a large extent. That s a talented work. Fela never dies. If u agree, hit like.

@justmagaji

๐Ÿ‘

@frederickteye

You're right... I can see that burner boy have picked a lot from him

@schwalsiogabriel7831

Facts only

@davidkidane2052

Fela is his inspiration

@mutumankonge7555

I have thought that Burna Boy to be his biological fathers??????

14 More Replies...

@nicebahula5315

I vote Fela Kuti Day in every African Calender, ๐Ÿ™‹โ€โ™‚๏ธ
This Man need to be celebrated in whole African Continent ๐ŸŒโœ…

@MRSZ5440

I second the motion.

@ogatoni8856

Fr

@lunsas

Of course โค

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