Sunday 11 December 2016

The Worst Comedy Spoof Song Ever

You know what the world needs? Another substantial post on Neoliberalism, that's what. And this evening, you find me scribbling away without an end in sight. A good job I had this in reserve.

I've taken it upon myself to listen to all the Now compilations in chronological order. I've just polished off number 17, and yes, they're pretty awful: a few decent tunes and a lot of filler. But none of that filler is as bad as this.

Paul Hardcastle's Nineteen is one of the greatest dance tunes ever, not least because it showed once and for all that tuneage set to repetitive beats can do politics, and do politics well. It's a three-and-a-half minute polemic against the waste of the Vietnam War and also doubles up as a memorial. An important song, a canonical song.

Then the summer of 1985 happened. The England cricket team got a whipping at the hands of the West Indies and brought home the anti-glory of national shame. To commemorate the shambles, a young Rory Bremner thought it'd be a hoot to take the piss with a novelty record (what was it about the 80s and novelty records?). However, unconscionably - for someone with lefty/liberal creds - Bremner decided to use Nineteen as its base, having not long spent five weeks at the top of the charts. That's when things got even worse.

Getting wind of the concept, Paul Hardcastle himself offered his services and produced the monstrosity below. That's right, he crapped all over his finest work for a cheap laugh about a shit cricket team. Even his record company told him not to do it precisely because it rubbished his previous achievement, but he carried on regardless. And for what? Perhaps the worst comedy song ever released.

It's a wonder such shockingly poor judgement didn't wreck either of their careers.


Metatone said...

Suspect he felt that the spoof would never be significant in the USA and that his political stance on Vietnam was more important there and that some extra royalties might help pay the mortgage?

Igor Belanov said...

Summer of 1984 actually.

Have you got a particularly painful boil or something? I'm trying to find reasons to explain your sense of humour by-pass.

Phil said...

England tour of the West Indies, 1985.

And no, I don't find spoofs of anti-war/commemorative songs particularly funny.

Igor Belanov said...

They weren't taking the mickey out of the original song, but the England cricket team. Maybe Hardcastle has a sense of humour and more of a moral claim to his own music and how it is used?

David Gower batting average 1984 home series vs West Indies: 19
David Gower batting average 1985-86 series in the West Indies: 37

I think the stats tell the story.