September 1, 2013

"The initial inspiration for the song 'London Calling' wasn't British politics."

"It was our fear of drowning."
In 1979 we saw a headline on the front of the London Evening Standard warning that the North Sea might rise and push up the Thames, flooding the city. We flipped. To us, the headline was just another example of how everything was coming undone.
The ice age is coming, the sun's of an end/Meltdown expected, the wheat is growing thin/Engines stop running but I have no fear/Cos London is drownin' and I live by the river.../London calling to the zombies of death/Quit holding out and draw another breath...

14 comments:

EDH said...

We also added Joe making seagull cries that were influenced by Otis Redding's "Dock of the Bay."

I'm always surprised when reminded Tippi Hedren played drums for The Clash.

St. George said...

Besides "London Calling" and "Train in Vain," none of their music has stood the test of time.

Great album cover, but even that ripped off Elvis' debut album's jacket art.

Phony Beatlemania indeed.

CWJ said...

"The ice age is coming"

Yeah, that was climate science in the '70s.

Now the warmists will have to suppress The Clash as well as the medieval warm period. Damn those Vikings growing crops in Greenland!

RazorSharpSundries said...

I never felt so much alive . . .

jr565 said...

Well Obama was elected, so I guess he saw to it that the water levels never rose higher He stopped an ice age!!! Er.... Wait, are we back to the ice age again, I thought we had to worry about warmth not cold.

Note that the climate alarmists were being really alarming even then. If we don't do SOMETHING London is going to be flooded!
What that SOMETHING is is what the lefty environmentalists say are modest proposals that only bankrupt entire nations if enacted (not that anyone will actually be able to follow through on them).

jr565 said...

Around the same time (or maybe a few years earlier) that the Clash put out this album, Culture put out the album Two Sevens Clash
The Rastafarians had this notion that on July 7th, 1977 was going to be this apocalyptic date, because of the numerology of the numbers 77 and because of the prophecies of Marcus Garvey.
"What a live in bombaie, when the two sevens clash"
And of course, 1977 came and went and nothing too apocalyptic happened. Culture, I think put out an album in 1978.

Sometimes the environmental movement strikes me like that. It's the Apocalypse! And yet the world keeps turning. If we dont get right with the environment we will be punished!

(by the way, despite getting it wrong on 1977, Culture still put out one of the best reggae records ever. Highly recommended)

somefeller said...

Another iconic Clash song, "Guns on the Roof" was supposedly initially inspired by shooting pigeons with a pellet gun from a rooftop, despite the later political content and interpretations. These things take on a life of their own.

somefeller said...

Besides "London Calling" and "Train in Vain," none of their music has stood the test of time.

Different people, different tastes. But I suspect there are a lot of musicians and music fans who would disagree. I could also mention the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but that wouldn't be very punk rock.

jr565 said...

As far as the Clash goes, theirfirst album was where it was at. London Calling had a lot of chaff on it.
By the time of Combat Rock they were shit. (Except for Rock The Casbah and Should I stay or Go, both decent songs)

Julie C said...

Love the Clash. I saw them in concert in LA when I was in college. A real rock and roll/punk band, rather than the over-produced slick stage shows you see now.

tim maguire said...

They did some good stuff, but they were always a little contrived, a little corporate for my tastes.

Guns of Brixton? Tommy Guns? Really? Doubt it.

Broomhandle said...

"The only band that matters." In 1980 that was very nearly true. Though I was always a big Jam fan

MCD said...

No disrespect to The Clash, but London Calling was coined much earlier, as the name of a Noel Coward review.

MCD said...

No disrespect to The Clash, but London Calling was coined much earlier, as the name of a Noel Coward review.