Black Boys On Mopeds

by Shea Rose

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about

On her 1990 debut album I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got, Sinéad O’Connor sang about police brutality in the UK on the song “Black Boys On Mopeds.” 

Although the lyrics do not mention Colin Roach, a 21-year-old black British man who died on January 12, 1983 from a gunshot wound inside the entrance of Stoke Newington police station in the London Borough of Hackney, the entire album is essentially dedicated to his family. 

Amid allegations of a police cover-up, Roach's death spurred protests and demands for an independent public inquiry.  Prior to Roach's death, Hackney Black People's Association had been calling for a public inquiry into policing in the area, alleging that there existed a culture of police brutality, wrongful detention of black people, racial harassment, and racially motivated "stopping and searching". 

Such an inquiry did not take place, although police did conduct an inquest into the incident. The verdict of the inquest was that he had committed suicide. 

Resource: 
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Colin_Roach

lyrics

Margareth Thatcher on TV
Shocked by the deaths that took place in Beijing
It seems strange that she should be offended
The same orders are given by her

I've said this before now
You said I was childish and you'll say it now
Remember what I told you
If they hated me they will hate you

England's not the mythical land of Madame George and roses
It's the home of police who kill black boys on mopeds
And I love my boy and that's why I'm leaving
I don't want him to be aware that there's
Any such thing as grieving

Young mother down at Smithfield
Five a.m., looking for food for her kids
In her arms she holds three cold babies
And the first word that they learned was please

These are dangerous days
To say what you feel is to dig your own grave
Remember what I told you
If you were of the world they would love you

England's not the mythical land of Madame George and roses
It's the home of police who kill blacks boys on mopeds
And I love my boy and that's why I'm leaving
I don't want him to be aware that there's
Any such thing as grieving

credits

released July 12, 2016
Artist: Shea Rose
Producer and Arranger: Simone Scazzocchio
Mix and Mastered by Will Holland (Chillhouse Recording Studios)
Album Artwork by Jeff Manning
Original lyrics and melody by Sinead O'Connor

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Shea Rose Boston, Massachusetts

Shea Rose is a recording artist and singer-songwriter celebrated for her music, iconic fashion and commitment to music as vehicle for social change.

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