TOP TEN: Election Special

A pre-election playlist, in no particular order. Click on highlighted words to hear the tracks.

1• I Don’t Recall

Attributed to F.U.N. (possibly an acronym for Fuck You National?), this witty lyric and wistful performance pays tribute to the Prime Minister’s disturbing propensity for brain fades.

2• He’s In The Jailhouse Now

Usually credited to Jimmie Rodgers, this 1927 recording by black blues and ragtime guitarist Blind Blake predates that of the country legend by a good year. The opening verse, with its tale of electoral fraud, serves as a timeless warning. Let’s dedicate it this year to John Banks.

3• Planet Key

Local blues man Darren Watson penned this profile of the current PM, Jeremy Jones created the hilarious graphics and the Electoral Commission tried to keep it off the airwaves. Watch it here

4• Conservative Christian Right Wing Republican Straight White American Males

Todd Snider is one of the great American dissenters, and while it is the U.S. system that is the focus of his satire here, the sentiments are universal. Here are two versions of his protest anthem. The first is concise, even if he fluffs the words (click here). The second (here) includes a long and hilarious preamble, if you have ten minutes to spare.

5• Listen To Us

Auckland hip-hoppers Home Brew were applying their scrutiny to National policies long before the current campaign. This cut, with Tom Scott and Tourettes sharing the rapping and a cleverly collaged video, dates from around the time of the last election. Still topical.

6• John Key Sucks

An eleven-year-old rapper tells it like it is, with the help of a rabbit glove puppet.

7• I’m An Economic Wizard

The Economic Wizards were local politico-rockers of the early 80s, borrowing the nickname of then-PM Rob Muldoon. This was their theme song. Apparently they are considering reforming as The Smiling Assassins. And you can find a few of their other songs on YouTube too. Here’s another favourite.

8• John Key: A Love Song

Attributed to Dead Vicious, which might be a band or the posthumous Sid. From the album Nightmare On Molesworth St. Listen here.

9• How Can A Poor Man Stand Such Times And Live? 

Ry Cooder adapted this song from the hillbilly fiddle player and social commentator Blind Alfred Reed, and adds and adapts verses as required. A political song for all seasons.

10• Elected

Alice Cooper’s Nixon-era broadside ripped off a riff from Hendrix and created a prototype for the Sex Pistols. Still rocks. Listen.

Bonus track (click here): 

“And while you’re out there smashing the state, don’t forget to keep a smile on your lips and a song in your heart” – Fat Freddy

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