Better, Worse or Different?
Well….perhaps. Like anything from decades -their symbol is the rose after all…. But was it really that much better than our 21st Century counterpart? Let’s examine, compare and contrast…..
Starting with the leaders. Neil Kinnock. Oh yes. He wanted to modernise Labour, make it more electable, get rid of any factions that would put off Mr and Mrs Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells, and more on a par with… The SDP Alliance? The Tories? Hmm. Never thinking for one minute that HE could be the common denominator in the unelectable equation, he continued to change the Labour Party into something resembling the Tories, only not quite as bad as them, paving the way for the resounding victories of Tony Blair and resounding defeats that followed…
In the world of 2016, we have our wild card candidate who was elected Labour Leader with the largest mandate since the aforementioned A.C.L Blair, for vastly different reasons of Ah, Red Wedge. Labour’s attempt to secure the “yoof” vote. Coal, Not Dole. Rock against Racism etc. Those were the days….
past, we tend to view it through rose coloured specs, appropriately enough for a Labour initiative Right?
course. Since his rise to the leadership in Sept 2015, Mr. Corbyn has achieved a considerable amount of u-turning from the Tories, has shocked many, myself included, by doing things no previous Labour Leaders have ever done, or have not done for at least half a century, and his standing continues to rise in the face of unprecedented contempt from both the mainstream media and his opponents in Westminster. In response, he remains composed, dignified, with extraordinary, almost superhuman fortitude. In the Labour Leader stakes, in my humble opinion, we are miles better off…
Sadly, not so much in the entertainment stakes. Red Wedge had Paul Weller, Billy Bragg, The Communards, The Redskins…. I think you see the point…. Although JC4PM has more of a variety of entertainers (the poet Michael Rosen, and the second best person with THAT first name, Jeremy Hardy) it sadly lacks the big names (apart from the obvious Mr Bragg) needed to put the proverbial bums on seats, or sadly, to excite anyone at the thought of attending. In contrast, to this day I can watch a Red Wedge gig on You Tube and sing along with Don’t Look Any Further…. JC 4 PM will lack any memorability sadly, beyond the night itself.
So, what to do? Many young people in particular got politically involved last year owing to a shock victory for a traditional Labour candidate which saw a bit of hope peeking through the greyness of Tory austerity. This is highly encouraging but has not as yet translated into an outpouring of musical expression. There is the odd attempt- Thee Faction, a sort of 21st Century Redskins, Robb Johnson, Joe Solo and Grace Petrie to name a few. But until these artists sell in the quantities of a Bragg or Weller, it is likely that we will not see those glory days of pop and politics revived, for the foreseeable future
Click here for a secure way to sign up, you will be supporting independent news. Click the button below.
Disagree with this article? why not write in and you can have your say? email us