Mary J. Blige recently did an Apple Music-sponsored interview with Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. You may have seen a clip floating around online. One that features Mary singing to Hillary. Well, what she was singing was Bruce Springsteen’s “American Skin (41 Shots).” Springsteen originally wrote this song back in 1999, following the tragic murder of 23-year-old immigrant Amadou Diallo.
On February 4, 1999, was shot and killed by four police officers in New York City. A total of 41 shots were fired and 19 of those hit Diallo, who was also unarmed. It’s clear that the song is still incredibly relevant to this today. So much so that Mary J. Blige recorded her own version of the song, and released the studio version this week. The song gets a poignant and beautiful verse from Kendrick Lamar. And this isn’t the first time Amadou Diallo has been referenced in song.
Ziggy Marley, 88-Keys, Lauryn Hill, The Spooks, Wyclef Jean and others have written/sung songs about his death, or mentioned his death in their songs. So be sure to listen to the song and let us know how you feel about it.
You can also check out the Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band original version of the song, performed live, down below.