Weeping, The South African Anti-Apartheid Protest Song

Welcome to my "Weeping" page...

Weeping: Dan Heymann, songwriter Picture: gillstrawberry.co.za

I'm Dan Heymann, and I wrote the words and music of "Weeping" during the mid-1980's
when I was an unwilling soldier, drafted into the army of South Africa's white-supremacist regime.

I now live in New York City. To contact me via e-mail, please click

To see Josh Groban's 2008 performance of "Weeping" on CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman", click here

To see the original video of "Weeping" (recorded by Bright Blue, video directed by Nic Hofmeyr, and that's me on keyboards!), click here

Click here to view the lyrics of "Weeping"
Click here to read about the development of "Weeping"
Click here to see the story of Bright Blue
Click here to view some details about Ladysmith Black Mambazo
Click here to read something about Josh Groban's career through 2006
Click here to read a little about Vusi Mahlasela's story through 2006
Click here to view a very compressed history of the anti Apartheid movement in South Africa
Click here for Muffled Music

Click here to read my story through 2006

Click here to see the Sitemap

The first recording of "Weeping" to be played on the radio
(the 1987 version by South African band Bright Blue)
included a refrain from the anthem of the African National Congress.

Today that tune (Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika) is South Africa's National Anthem,
but at the time, it was under a "ban" by the Apartheid government.

In the event, the radio DJ's had a field-day with "Weeping", and it spent two weeks at Number One.

To read the lyrics of "Weeping", please click here

Over the years, the following artists have released recordings of "Weeping":

1987: Bright Blue (on the flip-side of our "forty-five" Yesterday Night)
Weeping: Cover-art from 1st version

1993: Various personnel (recorded for Ipi Tombi movie soundtrack)
Weeping: Cover-art from 2nd version

1996: Qkumba Zoo (on their CD Wake Up & Dream)
Weeping: Cover-art from 3rd version

1996: Soweto String Quartet, with guest vocalist Vusi Mahlasela (on their CD Renaissance)
Weeping: Cover-art from 4th version

Around 1997: Coenie de Villiers (with lyrics in Afrikaans, on his CD Solo)
Weeping: Cover-art from 5th version

2000: Kearsney College Choir (on their CD Road to the Olympics)
Weeping: Cover-art from 6th version

Around 2002: James Stewart (on his CD Eklektik)
Weeping: Cover-art from 7th version

2004: Jinny Sagorin (on her CD It's For You)
Weeping: Cover-art from 8th version

2004: Soweto Gospel Choir (on their CD Blessed)
Weeping: Cover-art from 9th version

2006: Josh Groban (on his CD Awake)
Weeping: Cover-art from 10th version

2008: Josh Groban, a second time (on his DVD-CD package Awake Live)
Weeping: Cover-art from 11th version

2009: Josh Groban, a third time (on his DVD An Evening in New York City)
Weeping: Cover-art from 12th version

2009: Louise Carver (on her CD 'The Home Tour' Live)
Weeping: Cover-art from 13th version

2010: St Alban's College (on their CD Chapel Choir)
Weeping: Cover-art from 14th version

Weeping , written by Dan Heymann (sometimes mis-spelled as Dan Heyman ), is a famous protest song that emerged from the South African anti Apartheid movement during the mid-1980's, and this song of freedom has been recorded by many artists, including noted South African band Bright Blue and, more recently, Josh Groban , in a collaboration with Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Vusi Mahlasela , who has previously released a solo recording of this song of protest . The anti Apartheid lyrics Weeping contains are among the most-recorded freedom song lyrics of any protest song to have come out of South Africa. The Weeping song (rights to which are partially controlled by Muffled Music ) led to a February, 2006, encounter between singer Josh Groban and songwriter Dan Heymann (occasionally mis-spelled as Heyman ) at New York City's Sony Studios, a legendary institution which has given many a song freedom to soar. It was a thrill for Dan to hear his anti Apartheid song being recorded by such a high-caliber team. Having been a musician in contact with various anti-Apartheid movements during the Freedom-Struggle in South Africa, when examining the Weeping lyrics , Dan was thrilled to feel the connection of his lyric to protest song tradition. When the time came to add backing vocals, nobody needed to teach Vusi Mahlasela lyrics to the Weeping song , having already performed it live so many times, and this new rendition of Dan's familiar rhyming- lyric protest song should give the song freedom to reach many new listeners. Many protest songs were inspired by the anti Apartheid movement and Dan is proud that his freedom song has been so well-received, particularly when there are already so many wonderful anti-Apartheid protest song lyrics in existence.