Monday 25 May 2009

Here is a protest ...

Or to be more precise, Laurel Aitken's protest. One of the joys in putting together the eventh issue of Your Heart Out, the spikily titled The Archaeology of An Abandoned Soul Single, was being able to include the lyrics of Laurel's Run Powell Run. This wonderful song by the skinhead's saint is on his 1969-ish Scandal In A Brixton Market set, which you need to track down by hook or by crook.

This song, Run Powell Run, is a fantastic response to the inflamma-tory rhetoric of the maverick right wing politician Enoch Powell, who was stirring up racial unrest. Now, 40 years on, in the UK there are European elections looming, and with public disgust whipped up into a frenzy against mainstream politicians there is a real risk the right wing BNP will benefit from 'protest' votes. So it's very timely to be referring to Laurel's protest, and it's surely time to sing out or speak out!

It's certainly a good time to share this clip, probably from Horace Ove's 1971 Reggae film (and please if anyone has a copy I would dearly love to see it!), of Millie Small singing her wonderful Enoch Power 'protest' with the performance prefaced by some of Powell's dangerous rhetoric. And Millie is awesome in this. The perfect response to racists.

1 comment:

  1. i'm singing i'm singing. but i've got a very bad feeling