The past several Fridays I’ve tried to find politically themed Clash songs that fit whatever the major news story was that particular week – Egypt, Libya, the labor protests in Wisconsin – and it turns out that’s pretty easy to do, given that the Clash were probably the most politically astute band I know of. But this week I decided to eschew politics and go straight for ass-kicking. You’ll pardon the expression.
And I’ll tell you ’bout Pete, didn’t want no fame
Gave all his money away
Well there’s something wrong, “It’s not good for you son!”
So they certified him insane …
As far as this particular video goes, I love the fact that the audio track sounds like it comes from the LP or the single. I think you can actually hear the needle drop at the beginning – and that’s exactly how I remember listening to it, with the headphones on, back in our grungy apartment on Illinois Street in Champaign when I was an undergraduate. Hisses and pops and all. Damn, I love this song. By the way, there’s great live version of “Jail Guitar Doors” from 1978 here (I positively love the blank screen – it’s like doing the Replacement’s “Bastards of Young” video one better), but it doesn’t have the vinyl feel of the LP or single version.
However, until looking into it for this piece, I didn’t realize that “Jail Guitar Doors” is actually a modified version of the 101’ers “Lonely Mother’s Son.” The 101’ers were, of course, Joe Strummer’s original band in the mid-1970s before forming the Clash with Mick Jones. So, there you go. You learn something new every day.
Now: Turn. It. Up.
© 2011 David P. von Ebers. All rights reserved.