Who Makes the Nazis?

Lyrics

(1)

Who makes the nazis?

Who makes the nazis?
I'll tell ya who makes the nazis

All the Os
Wino
Spermo
29 year old
Arse-licking hate [....] old (2)

Who makes the Nazis?
Bad Tele-V (3)

Who makes the Nazis?
Balding smug faggots
Intellectual half-wits
All the Os

Who makes the Nazis?
The Nazis are long horn
Long horn breed
Long horn--Long horn breed
Long horns--Long horn breed (4)

Who makes the Nazis?

Remember when I used to follow you home from school babe?
Before I got picked up for paedophilia (5)

Who makes the Nazis?
Motels like three split-level mirages (6)
Who makes the Nazis?
Buffalo lips on toast, smiling (7)
Who makes the Nazis?
I put a finger on the weird.
This was real Irish, no Joe;
Was then good as gold
And told of the rapists in the Spa Motel. (8)
The real mould. 

Who makes the Nazis?

Benny's cobweb eyes! (9)

Who makes the Nazis?

Bad-bias TV
Arena badges
BBC, George Orwell, Burmese police (10)
Who Makes the Nazis?

Long horn--Long horn breed
Long horns--Long horn breed

Who makes the Nazis?

(Rest rooms)
Black burnt flesh
Hark hark
Crack unit species
Who makes the Nazis?
(All the O's cross country)
Who makes the Nazis?
[Man] super shag-artists

Who makes the Nazis?
Bad-bias Tele-V
You mind tellin me?
Here's a word from Bobby

When you're out of rocks, just give them real soul
Hates not your enemy, love's your enemy
Murder all bush monkeys (11)

Long horn, Long horn breed

Who makes the Nazis?
Who makes the Nazis?
Bad-bias TV
Real mould
Real Irish know, Joe.
Who makes the Nazis?
Intellectual half-wits

Long horn--Long horn breed
Long horn--Long horn breed
Long horn--Long horn breed

Who makes the Nazis? 

(12)

SaveSave

Notes

1. Lyrically, this is a wild one, and seems to demand the question: how much of this is agenda-driven? If the lyrics are mostly trying to make a point, lyrics like "Buffalo lips smiling on toast" become particularly hard to assimilate. But lurking in here somewhere there is probably the idea that phenomena like Naziism are more closely related to the banalities of middle-class culture than is sometimes thought. Or something like that. On the other hand, the point may be that everyone makes the Nazis.  

^

2. Since we only get two legible examples of who the "Os" are here it is difficult to identify what they have in common. The difficulty is compounded by the fact that "Spermo" is not a familiar epithet. "Spermo-" is a combining form for the word "sperm," but it generally only appears in pretty technical contexts. Perhaps a spermo is some kind of sex maniac, in which case those who cannot control their passions make the Nazis (this would also cover winos). Or a repressed sex maniac, who sublimates his sexual urges... who the hell knows. The former seems more likely to me, as it is "who makes the Nazis" rather than "who are the nazis," and to the extent the song is making a coherent conceptual point, it seems to point up this distinction. However, I'm not convinced the song is trying very hard to make a coherent conceptual point.

Wino sperm also appears in the contemporaneous "Session Musician."

^

3. This isn't the usual nickname for television, but that seems to be what is meant here.

^

4. Although not technically longhorns, the most likely allusion here is to Heck cattle. Heck cattle were a result of an experiment by Lutz and Heinz Heck in Germany intended to retroactively breed back the aurochs, the descendant of all domestic cattle. Although the breeding apparently began in the 1920s, Hitler embraced the project. An attempt like this to bring back a wilder and more powerful animal was clearly in line with the Nazis' distorted appropriation of Nietzschean ideas, and represented a symbolic break with what Hitler saw as a small-spirited and domesticated bourgeois European culture. The result was just a new breed of cattle, not an aurochs. Thus, we might possibly see Heck cattle as a symbolic confluence of violent ideas and the banal reality which fosters them, which may be one of the themes of this song, hard as it is to interpret. On the other hand, The Story of the Fall claims this song was "inspired by the experience of touring Americky," so maybe Texas Longhorns are meant.  

^

5. Dan points out that this line may be meant to humorously echo Big Star's "Thirteen," which runs "Won't you let me walk you home from school/Won't you let me meet you at the pool."
After a little searching, Dan has turned up information which makes this connection seem likely. In Dan's words:

"I cited the 'picked up for paedophilia' line above as a jokey reference to the Big Star song 'Thirteen.' It may have been more than that.

I've been pushing this a bit further, bearing in mind the idea that perhaps some of the lyrics to this song refer to The Fall's trip to the United States in May-July 1981. 'Who Makes the Nazis' was debuted in September that year, and appeared on record for the first time the following March, on Hex. The Reformation! site says that lyrically it was more or less intact from its first outing. So it checks out chronologically.

Big Star, of course, featured eccentric guitar-pop genius Alex Chilton. In the late 1970s/early 1980s, Chilton was playing with Tav Falco in the Panther Burns (formed in 1979,) who we know MES met on the 1981 tour of the US, and who were label-mates of The Fall. 

According to Simon Ford's book Hip Priest (p96):

'Whereas on the last trip Smith had hooked up with the LA underground, on this trip he enjoyed the company of the Memphis scene and more specifically the Panther Burns led by Tav Falco and ex-Big Star guitarist Alex Chilton.'

The Fall were in Memphis some time around 20 June 1981.

MES: Looks like a member of the Panther Burns. (Laughs)

JNM: Oh yeah, I've heard of them. Did you play with them?

MES: No, but we met them in Memphis.

So maybe MES met Alex Chilton, with the rest of the Panther Burns. I think he was still playing with them regularly then. But he certainly met people who knew Alex Chilton well. So the echoes of Big Star look deliberate.

I also read an article which says: 

'Chilton records his most coherent solo effort, Like Flies On Sherbert, in 1979, with Dickinson again at the controls. One journalist describes it as "like the Sun sessions produced by Brian Eno." Chilton goes on to work with psychobilly rebels The Cramps, who enhance his bad-boy rep by regaling the music press with tales of him being chased over state lines by angry fathers whose teenage daughters he’d deflowered.
One unreleased track which offers an insight into Chilton’s state of mind at the time is "Riding Through The Reich." A ghastly account of Nazi malice sung to the tune of "Jingle Bells," he performs it live on Austin radio station KUT: "Riding through the Reich/In a big Mercedes Benz/Killing lots of Kikes/Making lots of friends/Rat a tat tat tat/Mow the bastards down/Oh, what fun it is to have the Nazis back in town."'

[Chilton claimed that those lyrics to "Riding through the Reich", referred to above, were found among the papers of Frederick Cowan, a Nazi who shot 10 people in a shooting spree in New Rochelle, New York, on 14 February 1977. Six people died.]

And then I read this from New Statesman, 3 September 2001 - i.e. well before Chilton's death]:

'Chilton, I now realise, is a man who has an unpleasant fixation with the sexuality of young girls. Chilton has always defended his song "Thirteen," which is about being obsessed with a girl of that age, by saying it was written from the perspective of a 13-year-old boy. So why, at a gig in 1993, did he choose to dedicate it to Michael Jackson? Was he also adopting a child's perspective the other week when he sang a song called "Patti Girl," whose subject is "only 12 years old," and another called "Hot Thing," about a girl who's "too young to go steady?" And what was he up to when he recently released a solo album called Loose Shoes and Tight Pussy?'

What, indeed...?

From A Man Called Destruction, biography of Alex Chilton:

'He'd just written a new song, "Hey! Little Child," inspired by the high school girls who flocked to Panther Burns gigs... "A lot of those people were dating underage girls," says Kent Benjamin. "And you see that in so many of Alex's songs, like 'Hey! Little Child'. The [Chilton] house on Harbert was not far from this Catholic girls' school, and Alex's big thing was to go sit on the curb there when all the young girls with their Catholic school uniforms walked by."'

p.237.

On the other hand, nairng points out that "the practice of accompanying a girl home from school is a common idea in rock n roll lyrics, I find. A notable example is Larry Williams's "Slow Down," which was covered by Liverpool band The Beatles: "I used to walk you home, baby, after school, carry your books home, too." I feel that the lyric here may be referencing that cliche and highlighting its obvious creepiness, given many r'n'r stars' predilection for younger sexual partners (e.g. Jerry Lee Lewis abducting & marrying his then 13-year-old cousin) without any necessary reference to Big Star / Alex Chilton. At any rate, I can't see any direct reference to the Big Star lyric; there must be many of similar lines in the works of Fats Domino, for example, and other r'n'r types."

Note also "Good Morning Little School Girl" and "Gloria" make use of this questionable trope...

^

6. Based on the following from Dan, we must conclude it is likely that either MES got this phrase ("split-level mirages," a pun on "split-level garages") from a poet, they both have it from an independent source, or it is a known phrase:

A similar phrase appears in the work of the poet Laurel Ann Bogen, specifically her "I coulda been a contender." It includes the following: "l got it back pug-scrappy/l almost tossed out the frenzy and the cockroaches/For a split-level mirage of dubious companionship." This is collected in a few places: Bogen's anthologies The Night Grows Teeth and Other Observations (1980) and The Burning: New and Selected Poems, 1970-1990 (1991), and also in The Maverick Poets: an Anthology, edited by Steve Kowit (1988). Obviously I don't know if MES read Bogen, maybe he did, maybe he didn't. But like with "Odeon sky," the unusualness of the phrase makes me wonder if the concept of a split mirage or split-level mirage has some kind of real-world salience.

^

7. Dan has found a reference to an actual beef dish called "Buffalo Lips," but it seems to be pretty rare, as I can't find any information on it on the internet.

^

8. SkirikingFucker (blame his/her mother, not me!) says there is a famous hotel near Dublin called the "Spa Hotel." But in researching this possibility, what I have discovered is that there is a genre of hotels called "spa hotels" so it is quite difficult to narrow it down to one. In any case there is one near Dublin called The Lucan Spa Hotel which may be the one s/he's thinking of, and we did just get the "real Irish" line (the proper reading of which is a whole other question). 

^

9. From the Fall online forum (thanks to My Balloon):

this was on Fallnet:

From: "Philip Johnson" 
Subject: Benny's cobweb eyes 

This is an allusion to the UK soap opera 'Crossroads', which isn't on any more. In the late 70s and early 80s, one of the show's best known characters was Benny Hawkins (Paul Henry), a sort of gentle-giant simpleton figure who always wore a woolly hat. He was meant to be pathetic, and was regularly used as a punching-bag for fortune - he was illiterate, his girlfriend got killed off, a Mrs Prewitt made him sleep in a garden shed, and for a while he was blinded. When his eyes were being examined, he said to the doctor 'I can't see nothing, doctor... only cobwebs!' 

nairng pipes up:

"In MR James's story 'The Tractate Middoth' (which sounds very much like a Fall title to me) a ghostly figure in the library thwarts the finding of the eponymous book, and is described by the librarian thusly: 'the eyes were very deep-sunk; and over them, from the eyebrows to the cheek-bone, there were cobwebs--thick.'"

Dan says that "cobweb eye" is a colloquial handle for blurred vision, or, from what I can find on the internet, seeing "floaters." I had never heard of it. So this is one of those times when MES seems (to me, at least) to be at his most surrealist and opaque, and he turns out to be perhaps saying something rather mundane. 

Recently Mark E. Smith was asked if any of his lyrics now make him cringe, and he picked this line...an odd choice, it doesn't seem particularly like a clunker.  

^

10. Orwell of course fought against the Nazi-supported Franco regime in Spain in the 1930s. Orwell was also a member of the Indian Imperial Police in Burma. Despite his role there, he was a critic of British imperialism and drew upon his experiences with the Burmese police in his later writings in a way that can be summed up in his famous quote "when the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom that he destroys."  

^

11. "Bush monkey" is (honestly) a word for somone who works in the logging industry and whose function is to make piles of tanbark. Otherwise, I'm not sure what's going on here. Mr. Marshall says we should hear this as an epithet for black people (sung in character as a racist), and it certainly sounds like it could be one, but I have not been able to find any occurrences of the phrase in this sense.

^ 

12. Courtesy of the Lyrics Parade (as the typographical oddities are in the book, I left it as is):

Note: The following are some notes from MES's diary dated January 26 (1982?) from the Lough book that bear on this song:

A necklace fur coated poodle over
Black burnt flesh\
Hark hark
Crack unit species
Who makes the Nazis?
I'd put a finger on the
weird. This was real Irish
know. Joe was then good
as gold + told of the rapist
in the Spa Motel
The real mould.
Remember when I used to follow you
home from school babe?
Stick some paper under
the door at 8 pm.
Rest room.
Motels like 3 split mirages who makes the Nazis?
Benny's cobweb eyes
Met some eyes in a dirty goods
shop/mutual recognition of
hard man crack/bllur
blur retreat
Who makes the Nazis?

^

SaveSave

SaveSave

Comments (48)

dannyno
  • 1. dannyno | 27/04/2013

"Remember when I used to follow you home from school babe?
Before I got picked up for paedophelia "

Those lines make me think of the lyrics to Thirteen, by Big Star:

"Won't you let me walk you home from school
Won't you let me meet you at the pool "

But that's probably just me.

dannyno
  • 2. dannyno | 03/05/2013

"Black burnt flesh
Hark hark
Crack unit species
Who makes the Nazis?"

From the book "Blockbuster" by Stephen Barlay (1977):

"Bucken turned away. Like it or not, he had a job to do. He wondered if Nazi henchmen were created that way."

"Kowalski must have been dead for some time. The heavy smell of blood mingled with the bitter smoke of black-burned flesh."

Stephen Barlay obituary: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/feb/17/stephen-barlay-obituary

dannyno
  • 3. dannyno | 19/07/2013

"rapists at the spa motel"

Pre-cog?: See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vilina_Vlas (known as a spa motel if you google it).

Mark
  • 4. Mark | 21/05/2014

The "Bush monkeys" line is sung by Steve Hanley, I think.

Mr. Marshall
  • 5. Mr. Marshall | 06/06/2014

The bush monkeys is a reference to blacks..."when you're out of" to "bush monkeys" is meant to be a racist talking.

bzfgt
  • 6. bzfgt | 15/06/2014

Do you have a reference to that usage of "bush monkey"? It certainly sounds like a racist epithet but I don't recall hearing that one and I can't raise an instance of it on the internet.

bzfgt
  • 7. bzfgt | 15/06/2014

The stanza is preceded by "Here's a word from Bobby," and if anyone has an idea who that might refer to in this sense that could be a clue.

bzfgt
  • 8. bzfgt | 15/06/2014

In this "case," I meant.

Who is Bobby? I thought of Bobby Seale for some reason although that would mean the first two lines were his and "murder all bush monkeys" someone else's, if the racist angle is right. Anyway, I have no reason to think it is he, but I have been trying to Google the stanza or individual lines or words thereof with "Bobby," so if anyone can think of any Bobbys it might be it could yield something with some strategic Googling.

dannyno
  • 9. dannyno | 29/06/2014

I cited the "picked up for paedophilia" line above as a jokey reference to the Big Star song "Thirteen". It may have been more than that.

I've been pushing this a bit further, bearing in mind the idea that perhaps some of the lyrics to this song refer to The Fall's trip to the United States in May-July 1981. "Who Makes the Nazis" was debuted in September that year, and appeared on record for the first time the following March, on Hex. The Reformation! site says that lyrically it more or less intact from its first outing. So it checks out chronologically.

Big Star, of course, featured eccentric guitar-pop genius Alex Chilton. In the late 1970s/early 1980s, Chilton was playing with Tav Falco in the Panther Burns (formed 1979) who we know MES met on the 1981 tour of the US, and who were label-mates of The Fall.

According to Simon Ford's book "Hip Priest" (p96):

"Whereas on the last trip Smith had hooked up with the LA underground, on this trip he enjoyed the company of the Memphis scene and more specifically the Panther Burns led by Tav Falco and ex-Big Star guitarist Alex Chilton."

The Fall were in Memphis some time around 20 June 1981.

See: http://www.jneomarvin.com/interviews/the-fall-unpublished-1981

"MES: Looks like a member of the Panther Burns. (Laughs)

JNM: Oh yeah, I've heard of them. Did you play with them?

MES: No, but we met them in Memphis."

So maybe MES met Alex Chilton, with the rest of the Panther Burns. I think he was still playing with them regularly then. But he certainly met people who knew Alex Chilton well. So the echoes of Big Star look deliberate.

I also read this article:
http://www.uncut.co.uk/big-star/big-star-whats-going-ahn-feature

Which says:

"Chilton records his most coherent solo effort, Like Flies On Sherbert, in 1979, with Dickinson again at the controls. One journalist describes it as “like the Sun sessions produced by Brian Eno”. Chilton goes on to work with psychobilly rebels The Cramps, who enhance his bad-boy rep by regaling the music press with tales of him being chased over state lines by angry fathers whose teenage daughters he’d deflowered.
One unreleased track which offers an insight into Chilton’s state of mind at the time is “Riding Through The Reich”. A ghastly account of Nazi malice sung to the tune of “Jingle Bells”, he performs it live on Austin radio station KUT: “Riding through the Reich/In a big Mercedes Benz/Killing lots of Kikes/Making lots of friends/Rat a tat tat tat/Mow the bastards down/Oh, what fun it is to have the Nazis back in town.”"

And then I read this article:
http://www.ilxor.com/ILX/ThreadSelectedControllerServlet?boardid=41&threadid=21220
[New Statesman, 3 September 2001 - i.e. well before Chilton's death]:

"Chilton, I now realise, is a man who has an unpleasant fixation with the sexuality of young girls. Chilton has always defended his song 'Thirteen', which is about being obsessed with a girl of that age, by saying it was written from the perspective of a 13-year-old boy. So why, at a gig in 1993, did he choose to dedicate it to Michael Jackson? Was he also adopting a child's perspective the other week when he sang a song called 'Patti Girl', whose subject is 'only 12 years old', and another called 'Hot Thing', about a girl who's 'too young to go steady'? And what was he up to when he recently released a solo album called Loose Shoes and Tight Pussy?"

What indeed...

Dan

dannyno
  • 10. dannyno | 29/06/2014

Chilton turned 31 in December 1981, so unfortunately there "29 years old" reference can't be directly linked to him (unless MES got it wrong, which is possible).

From "A Man Called Destruction", biography of Alex Chilton:

"He'd just written a new song, 'Hey! Little Child', inspired by the high school girls who flocked to Panther Burns gigs... 'A lot of those people were dating underage girls,' says Kent Benjamin. 'And you see that in so many of Alex's songs, like 'Hey! Little Child'. The [Chilton] house on Harbert was not far from this Catholic girls' school, and Alex's big thing was to go sit on the curb there when all the young girls with their Catholic school uniforms walked by."

p.237.

dannyno
  • 11. dannyno | 29/06/2014

Chilton claimed that those lyrics to "Riding through the Reich", referred to above, were found among the papers of Frederick Cowan, a Nazi who shot 10 people in a shooting spree in New Rochelle, New York, on 14 February 1977. Six people died.

dannyno
  • 12. dannyno | 29/06/2014

I've not seen it stated explicitly, but obviously "buffalo lips" is a beef dish.

eg: http://www.alibaba.com/product-detail/Buffalo-Beef-Lips_148914362.html

dannyno
  • 13. dannyno | 30/06/2014

All of which is a lot riding on basically a single line. But still.

Mark
  • 14. Mark | 01/07/2014

I read somewhere (he says, vaguely) that "Buffalo lips on toast, smiling" = a hamburger.

dannyno
  • 15. dannyno | 01/07/2014

Well, could be. Except that buffalo lips is an actual beef product that exists and you can buy and eat. So, we don't need to think of it as a metaphor.

dannyno
  • 16. dannyno | 22/07/2014

Sounds like "R 'n' R badges", not "Arena badges"

Stephen Parkin
  • 17. Stephen Parkin | 08/10/2014

Not necessarily to defend Alex Chilton, but at least one song called "Loose Shoes" is a riposte to a comment by the NC Republican Earl Butz, who once said: "I'll tell you what the coloreds want. It's three things: first, a tight pussy; second, loose shoes; and third, a warm place to shit." The song is a nice Louis Jordan/Cab Calloway type parody; it's on Youtube

Stephen Parkin
  • 18. Stephen Parkin | 08/10/2014

Sounds like "R 'n' R badges", not "Arena badges"

I'd have thought that's more likely to be RAR badges - "Rock Against Racism," such as Smith is wearing in at least one very early onstage photograph.

dannyno
  • 19. dannyno | 03/11/2014

Could be, but I'm not sure about "more likely". RAR was on the way out in 1981, and MES hadn't worn any such badges for years at that point. On the other hand RAR would fit very nicely a song called "Who Makes the Nazis"!

But having just listened to the line again, it still sounds like "R n R" rather than RAR.

dannyno
  • 20. dannyno | 05/06/2016

"Cobweb eye"

.. is of course a semi-medical term for a form of blurred vision.

Anyway, the episode of Crossroads where Benny was the victim of a hit and run was first aired on 15 June 1981.

bzfgt
  • 21. bzfgt | 29/06/2016

"Of course"? I've never heard that.

dannyno
  • 22. dannyno | 08/08/2016

"Motels like three split-level mirages"

This phrase "split level mirage" or "split mirage". It feels like it's an actual thing, but what it is, I don't know.

However, a similar phrase appears in the work of the poet Laurel Ann Bogen, specifically her "I coulda been a contender". It includes the following:


l got it back
pug-scrappy
l almost tossed out
the frenzy and the cockroaches
for a split-level mirage
of dubious companionship


This is collected in a few places, Bogen's anthologies "The Night Grows Teeth and other observations" (1980) and "The Burning: new and selected poems, 1970-1990" (1991), and also in "The Maverick Poets: an anthology", edited by Steve Kowit (1988).

Obviously I don't know if MES read Bogen, maybe he did, maybe he didn't. But like with "Odeon sky", the unusualness of the phrase makes me wonder if the concept of a split mirage or split-level mirage has some kind of real-world salience.

dannyno
  • 23. dannyno | 08/08/2016

I could kind of understand it as a metaphor, like "split-level" homes: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Split-level_home. I'm feeling that split-level-ness is representative of something or other.

bzfgt
  • 24. bzfgt | 25/08/2016

I couldn't raise a copy of the poem online, so I guessed at the enjambment--let me know if it's wrong.

bzfgt
  • 25. bzfgt | 25/08/2016

23: well, split-level homes would be an obvious symbol of bourgeois banality, and in some respects this could be pegged as a "mirage"--the bourgeois dream of complacent, guiltless living when they're actually "making the nazis," that sort of thing...

dannyno
  • 26. dannyno | 16/10/2016

"paedophelia"

Typo!

JOHN FUN
  • 27. JOHN FUN | 19/10/2016

Split-level garage is a common thing. Garage rhymes with mirage.

bzfgt
  • 28. bzfgt | 21/10/2016

Right, John--sometimes something is not said but it seems so clear I feel like it has, and this is one such case. It didn't occur to me to spell that out but of course that is the pun, so I'll fix it up.

dannyno
  • 29. dannyno | 22/10/2016

"Garage rhymes with mirage"

Well, hang on, only if you pronounce "garage" as "garraj". But i don't pronounce it that way, I pronounce it "garridge". Hard vowels.

So the question is, how would MES pronounce it?

bzfgt
  • 30. bzfgt | 29/10/2016

Yeah, English people do not cotton to European pronunciations, I've noticed this!

(Freudian typo? when I looked at this, I had typed "I notcied this!")

Sarah Bond
  • 31. Sarah Bond | 15/11/2016

Do you think Long Horn Breed might represent Moloch or Ba'al worshipers, there seems to be a lot amongst the elite classes?

dan melchior
  • 32. dan melchior | 17/11/2016

I always took the pedophile line as a reference to the song 'little girl' by them. This seems a much more likely thing for mes to listen to than big star.
'I passed by your classroom
Just had to take a look
And I watched, looked
What you had writ' in your book
'Cause I love ya
And I don't care, what they say
I don't care what, what they say'
Creepy stuff.

bzfgt
  • 33. bzfgt | 24/11/2016

It's possible there's some kind of secondary allusion going on with "Longhorn breed," but as there is no evidence that would be strictly for the comment section...there could be any number of meanings if we start in on that sort of thing. I'm not sure what you mean about Ba`al worship among the elite, but you're not another pseudonym of a different commenter, are you? There's someone who goes in for that sort of thing who posts here from time to time....

SkrikingFucker
  • 34. SkrikingFucker | 25/11/2016

There's a famous hotel just outside of Dublin called the Spa Hotel, maybe MES was told a story about a murder there by the "Irish Joe" ?

bzfgt
  • 35. bzfgt | 21/12/2016

Sometimes, even though I inherited thousands of words from the LP, I am amazed that there is something that sticks around for so long without an investigation, such as the following:

This was real Irish know.
Joe was then good as gold

At a minimum the enjambment is badly chosen here. It is either "This is real Irish, no Joe" or "This is real Irish know, Joe." Neither make a lot of sense to me but "This is real Irish know" makes less so I wonder if "no Joe" can mean anything in this context? Irish coffee, not a mere cup of "Joe""? Who the hell knows. But I'm going with "no Joe" unless there's a case for the other, at least it seems to have the potential to make sense.

SkrikingFucker, is it the Lucan hotel mentioned above in my revised note of which you are thinking? One thing about this gig, I'm always being told about famous thises and well-known thats about which I can find little record, and if it's not that one it can't be all that famous...

dannyno
  • 36. dannyno | 23/12/2016

Buffalo lips:

Image

dannyno
  • 37. dannyno | 23/12/2016

The Lucan Spa Hotel (not a motel, mind) makes a literary appearance in Samuel Beckett's Dream of Fair to Middling Women.

Ian Edmond
  • 38. Ian Edmond | 28/01/2017

"Balding smug faggots"

I wonder if this is a reference to Saul Galpern, of Kamera records, who of course put out Hex. Galpern went on to found Nude Records, who had a lot of success with Suede. The Suede B-side Implement Yeah!, which is about MES, includes the line "That boy Smith called Saul a Scotch homo", which I always suspected was Brett Anderson using an anecdote that Galpern had told him about the old days. I don't know if Galpern is gay, but if so, all this fits together, especially with MES's usual attitude to the people running his record companies. The "balding" may well have been true at the time - certainly is now, if you check this interview from a few years back (which includes a great story of how he almost signed The Fall to Nude, sabotaged by some typical MES behaviour).

I actually hope I'm wrong about this (so anyone with any contradictory ideas please chip in), because the tone makes this almost as problematic as "Where are the obligatory...".

I met Saul Galpern once in the mid 90s. Nude had the office above one that I was visiting, and he invited my wife and I up with someone from the downstairs office to watch the video for Suede's The Wild Ones which had just been finished. It's still (probably) my favourite Suede song, and Saul was lovely and friendly.

SkrikingFucker
  • 39. SkrikingFucker | 01/02/2017

The Lucan Spa Hotel it is. It is very well known in Ireland, you would have passed it coming into Dublin from "de country" before motorways. It would have been a landmark basically.

As well as the Beckett reference mentioned above, I have seen it referenced in passing in a lot of Irish literature. Was reading Langrishe, Go Down by Aidan Higgins the other day where it was mentioned, reminded me to come back here!

bzfgt
  • 40. bzfgt | 11/02/2017

Interesting stuff, Ian! The link doesn't work for me, however...

dannyno
  • 41. dannyno | 23/02/2017

Comment #38. Reference to Saul Galpern?

It's not impossible, given the Suede parody lyric, but I also think you can fit lots of lines to real people by ripping them out of context (although admittedly it is not unknown for MES to shove lines into songs out of context!). But MES was well disposed towards Kamera and in interviews has always expressed regret about having to leave the label. And it also seems a bit incongruous given the rest of the lyrics.

From interview with Kay Carroll in Simon Ford's Hip Priest (p95):


'Mark and I went to Saul's home and hung out with him,' said Carroll. 'I think Versa introduced him to me. We were his first band on the Kamera label and although he appeared to be a bit of a "Jack the Lad" character I remember Mark liked him.'


Hip Priest records a less positive view of Galpern when he was running Nude. The Fall considered signing, but MES was mistrustful because of the failure of Kamera, and also because the only chair in Galpern's office was his own. But of course that's years down the line.

dannyno
  • 42. dannyno | 23/02/2017

Galpern, from that link (2013 interview) above: http://www.godisinthetvzine.co.uk/2013/09/12/interview-saul-galpern-nude-music-group/


You worked with The Fall AND Simply Red. Didn’t you find something odd about this combination?

Not really. Both from Manchester and maybe took very different paths but both socialists to start with but yes very different musically – Hucknall did have bona-fide punk credentials though which people may not be aware of and his know-all of music was phenomenal – he had a genuine passion and amazing knowledge for Jamaican dub and those great Reggae singers which I loved as I too was a fan of a lot of Reggae from the late 70’s period…undeniably he is just a great singer and that début still stands up for me – for the times !

Mark E Smith is The Fall and there is no one quite like them – then and now. I remember around ’94 both Brett & Justine Frischmann (Elastica) telling me that I had to sign him when I was in the middle of Nude’s success – I got him down for a meeting but he told me some story about Mani from the Roses stealing the demos while he was sitting on the train coming down from Manchester. He turned up for the meeting with Gillian from New Order so it was all quite surreal and he only wanted to conduct the meeting in the pub. I’d loved to have put that record out on Nude at the time.

bzfgt
  • 43. bzfgt | 25/02/2017

Ha, I like that chair thing though...it manages to be funny about both men at once.

nairng
  • 44. nairng | 24/04/2017

I may have missed it, but I can't see that anyone has pointed out the MR James reference w/r/t the cobweb eyes? In his story The Tractate Middoth (which sounds very much like a Fall title to me) a ghostly figure in the library prevents the location of the eponymous book, and is described by the librarian thusly: "the eyes were very deep-sunk; and over them, from the eyebrows to the cheek-bone, there were cobwebs - thick." This is not to deny any Crossroads reference, but it seems unlikely that MES would not here be consciously referencing his beloved MR James.

Incidentally, the practice of accompanying a girl home from school is a common idea in rock n roll lyrics, I find. A notable example is Larry Williams's Slow Down, which was covered by Liverpool band The Beatles: "I used to walk you home, baby, after school, carry your books home, too." I feel that the lyric here may be referencing that cliche and highlighting its obvious creepiness, given many r'n'r stars' prediliction for younger sexual partners (eg Jerry Lee Lewis abducting & marrying his then 13-year old cousin) without any necessary reference to Big Star / Alex Chilton. At any rate, I can't see any direct reference to the Big Star lyric; there must be many of similar lines in the works of Fats Domino, for example, and other r'n'r types.

bzfgt
  • 45. bzfgt (link) | 13/05/2017

nairng, what do you mean by "prevents the location?" I changed it to "blocks the location," then thought twice and made it "guards the location." Please correct me if necessary.

bzfgt
  • 46. bzfgt (link) | 13/05/2017

Also "Good Morning, Little Schoolgirl" and "Gloria."

nairng
  • 47. nairng | 16/05/2017

Hey bzfgt, nairng piping up again...
I meant the location of the book - i.e. the finding of it - was prevented...location as in the act of locating sth, not the place where it is located...does that make sense??
It's a good story if you've not read it, btw!

bzfgt
  • 48. bzfgt (link) | 18/05/2017

Ah, I see now. I'll fix it, thank you.

I am pretty sure I have read it, is that the one where the ghost is originally in the book? Or am I thinking of something else? There's one by him where the book itself is the source of the haunting.

Add a comment

You're using an AdBlock like software. Disable it to allow submit.