sociopolitics

THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN!

The Magnificent Seven, by The Clash

(a.k.a. “the only band that matters”)

This song is from the album Sandinista!, the title referring to the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, with its catalogue number, ‘FSLN1’, referring to the abbreviation of the party’s Spanish name, Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional.

One of my Cal professors once said they made this album as lengthy as they did— it contains 36 songs, effectively containing 3 albums in 1— because they wanted it to be an album for the working class (i.e. an album for those that probably didn’t have a lot of money to use on leisurely expenses such as music), and they aimed to piss off their record label (which they indeed accomplished, selling what could have been 3 separate albums for the mere price of 1—What record company wouldn’t be miffed?!) According to Rolling Stone magazine, “The triple-LP package was a deliberately anti-commercial gesture. It sold for less than most double albums, and Columbia took the loss profits out of the group’s royalties and tour support funds.”

This album was:

– Recorded in Jamaica, London, and New York.

– Released in 1980.

– Voted album of the year by the Village Voice.

– And contained the first ever UK rap record, The Magnificent Seven.

The Magnificent Seven was inspired by the growing hip-hop scene in the U.S. and Joe Strummer actually wrote the words on the spot. One of my most favorite lyrics (probably of all time) besides “Italian mobster shoots a lobster,” is “Vacuum cleaner sucks up budgie!,” which apparently came from an actual news headline in England around the time this was recorded. Read more about these *MAGNIFICENT* lyrics here.

 

THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN:

Don’t you ever stop
Long enough to start
Take your car out of that gear

Don’t you ever stop
Long enough to start
Get your car out of that gear

Ring! Ring! It’s 7:00 A.M.!
Move y’self to go again
Cold water in the face
Brings you back to this awful place
Knuckle merchants and you bankers, too

Must get up an’ learn those rules
Weather man and the crazy chief
One says sun and one says sleet
A.M., the F.M. the P.M. too
Churning out that boogaloo
Gets you up and gets you out
But how long can you keep it up?
Gimme Honda, Gimme Sony
So cheap and real phony
Hong Kong dollars and Indian cents
English pounds and Eskimo pence

You lot! What?
Don’t stop! Give it all you got!
You lot! What?
Don’t stop! Yeah!

Working for a rise, better my station
Take my baby to sophistication
She’s seen the ads, she thinks it’s nice
Better work hard – I seen the price
Never mind that it’s time for the bus
We got to work – an’ you’re one of us
Clocks go slow in a place of work
Minutes drag and the hours jerk

“When can I tell ’em wot I do?
In a second, maaan…oright Chuck!”

Wave bub-bub-bub-bye to the boss
It’s our profit, it’s his loss
But anyway lunch bells ring
Take one hour and do your thanng!
Cheeesboiger!

What do we have for entertainment?
Cops kickin’ Gypsies on the pavement
Now the news – snap to attention!
The lunar landing of the dentist convention
Italian mobster shoots a lobster
Seafood restaurant gets out of hand
A car in the fridge
Or a fridge in the car?
Like cowboys do – in T.V. land

You lot! What? Don’t stop. Huh?

So get back to work an’ sweat some more
The sun will sink an’ we’ll get out the door
It’s no good for man to work in cages
Hits the town, he drinks his wages
You’re frettin’, you’re sweatin’
But did you notice you ain’t gettin’?
Don’t you ever stop long enough to start?
To take your car outta that gear
Don’t you ever stop long enough to start?
To get your car outta that gear
Karlo Marx and Fredrich Engels
Came to the checkout at the 7-11
Marx was skint – but he had sense
Engels lent him the necessary pence

What have we got? Yeh-o, magnificence!!

Luther King and Mahatma Gandhi
Went to the park to check on the game
But they was murdered by the other team
Who went on to win 50-nil
You can be true, you can be false
You be given the same reward
Socrates and Milhous Nixon
Both went the same way – through the kitchen
Plato the Greek or Rin Tin Tin
Who’s more famous to the billion millions?
News Flash: Vacuum Cleaner Sucks Up Budgie
Oooohh…bub-bye

Magnificence!!

FUCKING LONG, INNIT?

 

Sources:

theclash.com

wikipedia

rollingstone.com

La Femme Fetal

One of the most amazing politically conscious pieces of music ever…

La Femme Fetal by Digable Planets

Lyrics:

It was 8:49 on a beautiful 9th day of July
There was not a cloud to speak of
So the orange sun hung lonely in the sky
I lay prone in my catboat home
Thinking of fine nappy Jackie and his jazz cat’s horn
Sliding in a tape of bird on verve when suddenly rang my phone

“Hey butterfly”, the voice said
Slip on some duds comb out your fro and slide on down to my pad
The vibe here is very pleasant and I truly request your presence
A problem of great magnitude has arose and as we speak it grows
Damn, what could it be I thought
A juice I bought and rolled on down to her spot
Seeing bros I know slapping fives I arrived and pressed G-5
And there was Nikki lookin’ some kind of sad
With tears fallin’ from her eyes she sat me down
And dug my frown and began to run it down

“You remember my boyfriend Sid that fly kid who I love
Well our love was often a verb and spontaneity has brought a third
But do to our youth an economic state, we wish to terminate
About this we don’t feel great, but baby that’s how it is
But the feds have dissed me, they ignored and dismissed me
The pro-lifers harass me outside the clinic
And call me a murderer, now that’s hate
So needless to say we’re in a mental state of debate”

“Hey beautiful bird”, I said digging her somber mood
The fascists are some heavy dudes
They don’t really give a damn about life
They just don’t want a woman to control her body
Or have the right to choose but baby that ain’t nothin’
They just want a male finger on the button

Because if you say, “War”, they will send them to die by the score
Aborting mission should be your volition
But if Souter and Thomas have their way
You’ll be standing in line unable to get welfare
While they’ll be out hunting and fishing
It has always been around, it will always have the niche
But they’ll make it a privilege not a right accessible only to the rich

Hey pro-lifers need to dig themselves ’cause life doesn’t stop after birth
And for a child born to the unprepared it might even just get worse
The situation would surely change if they were to find themselves in it
Supporters of the h-bomb and fire bombing clinics
What type of shit is that? Orwellian in fact
If Roe V Wade was overturned would not the desire remain intact
Leaving young girls to risk their healths
Doctors to botch and watch as they kill themselves

Now I don’t want to sound macabre
But hey, isn’t it my job to lay it on the masses
And get them off their asses to fight against these fascists
So whatever you decide make that move with pride
Sid will be there and so will I
An insect ’til I die

Rhythms and sounds, spinning around
Confrontations across the nation
Your block, my block, dreadlocks what a shock
Land of the free but not me
Not me, not me, not me, not me
Not me, not me, not me, not me

 

 

 

 

 

Katt Williams’ International Adoption

This morning I heard on the radio that Katt Williams is finalizing his adoption of a six-year old Russian boy named Vladimir. This will be Mr. Williams’ 8th adoption. He already has 8 children, 7 of whom are adopted, 1 of whom is a biological son.

I, personally, don’t really know much about Katt Williams except for the fact that he had a very recent, and very public, ostensibly drug-induced meltdown here in Oakland, and that he has a laundry list of other legal troubles as well, including custody issues.

While I think it can be indicative of a very big heart to want to adopt so many children (I’m one of those “always give ’em the benefit of the doubt” people), international adoptions are a whole other ballgame, often fraught with an entirely unique set of social, cultural, and political issues. But opinions aside, I can’t even wrap my head around how this is legally feasible. I don’t care if the man is Tom Hanks, or Saul Perlmutter, the fact is, with a record like Williams’ this story just defies logic. And really, if this issue interests you at all, I highly suggest you read the article in that last hyperlink.