Sunday, December 20, 2009

Rage Against Mister Sheen

This Christmas Number 1 business? Rage Against The Machine versus Simon Cowell's latest spawn for the Christmas Number 1.

What with me being Brooklyn-based I can't say I've been following the spectacle too closely but I do have a liking for the mashed up parody video below, and I have been lapping up the bitter split storm in a strongbow can within the British Anarchist Blogging Community (BABC for short).

On one side of the barricades, those lining up with RATM and their shouty call to armed insurrectionism and, on the other side of the keyboard, those whippersnapper anarchos making a case for supporting any council estate urchin with a cover version and a dream . . . even if they've got X-Factor branded on their forehead.

Come seven clock tonight (Greenwich Mean Time) it'll be all over bar the blogging and we'll know who has gained entry to that illustrious pantheon that includes Benny Hill, Little Jimmy Osmond, St Winifred School Choir, Mr Blobby and Bob the Builder.

Is too early to start a Facebook group calling on the Human League to release a Christmas single in 2010? According to this page - be warned, it makes for grim reading - they were the last popsters to have a brilliant song reach the top spot at Christmas.

In truth, the only one since The Beatles.


mikeovswinton said...

Your list of the 'pantheon' omits the only one worth talking about. 1986 - Mr Excitement. Jack Leroy Wilson, Esq of Detroit. RIP and KTF.

mikeovswinton said...

Poor Old Johnny Ray will, of course, always have a place in the hearts of Famous Dixons' fans. He did, after all, break a million hearts in mono and make our mothers cry.

And fair play, I actually saw the Scaffold live in Bolton many, many years ago, and they were very funny. If memory serves they didn't sing all that much, though.

Darren said...

Yeah, but it was a re-release so it doesn't really count. (Cover versions also fall down on that score as well.)

I don't know the Johnny Ray track, and I did try to cover my arse by only trashing number 1s since the Beatles.

Maybe in retrospect I was a bit harsh. It would take a heart of stone not to concede that Slade's Merry Xmas Everybody is a bona fide classic, and I do also have soft spots for Girls Aloud and . . . . um, that's it.

Darren said...

Wait up. This chart is claiming that The Housemartins had the Christmas Number 1 in 1986.

What really happened? Has wiki been lying to me?

mikeovswinton said...

My memory is of it being Jackie Wilson. OK, it was a re-release, but it WAS Mr W.

The Johnny Ray thing was a ref to the first line of Come on Eileen, which nearly got released as "Poor Old Johnny Ray". In the band it was apparently know as "Jimmy, Stan and me". Jimmy = James Brown, Stan = Van Morrison, me = Kevin Rowland. Too-Rye-Aye was to have had the title Hey, where you goin with that suitcase. But I guess there's too much of this stuff in my head.

Don't suppose you guys Stateside ever got to see the Mark Strong vehicle "The Long Firm" from the book by Jake Arnott? Johnny Ray had a walk on part in that, swanning around London with an over the hill Judy Garland. The Mark Strong character, clearly based on Reg Kray, worshipped Judy, Judy, Judy. Which led to interesting scenes when she tries to perform very, very drunk. Brilliant drama.

Darren said...

Yeah, I know the Johnny Ray reference. It has to be one of the greatest opening lines in pop music. I just don't know Johnny Ray's music.

I haven't seen The Long Firm - though I vaguely remember the book when it came out - but I've been a fan of Strong since his stellar performance in Our Friends In The North. I might look out for it. There's a possibility it'll be on Netflix or a truncated version might be shown on BBC America at some point.