Rivers Of Babylon

Album: Nightflight To Venus (1978)
Charted: 1 30
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • Songplace
  • Some of the lyrics came from Psalm 137 of The Bible. The original Psalm was written during the Jews exile in Babylon in around 600 BC. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    David - Belfast, Ireland
  • This spent five weeks at #1 in the UK and was the biggest-selling single of 1978 there. It is also the biggest ever selling record by a black act in the UK. This song broke the record for most weeks at #1 in Germany - 17 weeks.
  • At the end of 2007 Boney M. were the only act to have two singles in the UK all-time Top 10 best sellers list. At that date, this song was the fifth top selling single of all time in the UK and Boney M's medley of "Mary's Boy Child/Oh My Lord" was the tenth. (UK's top selling single of all time is Elton John's "Candle In The Wind").
  • The song was written and originally recorded by Brent Dowe and Trevor McNaughton of the Jamaican roots reggae act The Melodians in 1970 and became an anthem of the Rastafarian movement. Their version appeared in the soundtrack to the 1972 movie The Harder They Come.
  • Haitian born Wyclef Jean performed this song along with his sister Melky on the charity telethon, Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief, which was held on January 22, 2010.
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Comments: 6

  • Eisso from Groningen, NetherlandsWhy put the Boney M version on your website and not the original reggae version? Boney M are little more than a cover band, making money out of other people's creativity.
  • Cyberpope from Richmond, CanadaAnybody else notice it's the same tune as for Berlin's "How Dry I Am"?
  • Mel from Riverbank, CaThis song was covered by Sublime on album 40 Oz. To Freedom
  • Howard from St. Louis Park, MnThis was one of the few songs along with the Byrds Turn Turn Turn that was based on a biblical passage.
  • Olaf from Occidental, CaThis song was written by Brent Dowe and Trevor McNaughton of the Jamaican group The Melodians. They recorded it in 1969.
    It has been covered by Linda Ronstadt and others.
  • Axel Titus from Lake Forest, CaBoney M's only Top 40 hit in the US.
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