This song was first recorded by Bob Marley in the late '60s and re-recorded for his 1978 Kaya album. In 1999 a dance re-mix by Danish house music producer Funkstar De Luxe of his original 1960s recording reached #3 in the UK charts, Bob Marley's highest British chart placing. It also reached #1 on the US dance chart.
In the liner notes of Africa Unite: The Singles Collection, Island Records boss Chris Blackwell wrote: "The original version of 'Sun Is Shining' was produced by Lee Perry. I loved his production, which was very sparse. But the version we re-recorded for Kaya has a great atmosphere, too. We tried to reflect the essence of the song, which is saying the sun is shining but don't forget that people are suffering too."