The video for "Mandinka" was shown heavily after debuting 24 January 1988 on 120 Minutes on MTV. The single was a mainstream pop hit in the UK, peaking at #17 in the singles chart, as well as her native Ireland.
Sinéad also sang the song live at the 1989 Grammy Awards.
In an interview in The Tech, 12 April 1988, O'Connor said: "Mandinkas are an African tribe. They're mentioned in a book called Roots by Alex Haley, which is what the song is about. In order to understand it you must read the book."