Thursday, 2 August 2012

War is declared and the battle come down

So, you’re a public broadcaster that is working overtime to be hip, to be relevant.  The Olympics are on.  In London, a pretty hip place.  What theme song do you use to introduce your Olympic news updates?

London Calling, by the Clash.  A downer of a song.  An angry song.  An apocalyptic song.  A paranoid song.  By a punk band.  Come on, CBC.  Really?

Don’t get me wrong; it’s a great song by a terrific band.  I love it.

But are we so shallow, so inured to manipulation, so dumbed down that we aren’t supposed to look past the title?

Nuclear error?  Zombies of death?  London is drowning?  Help!

Assuming he collects some royalty payments, I suppose Mick Jones (alas, Joe Strummer is no longer with us) can laugh his way to the bank.  But as an artist, I gotta believe he’s just a little offended that someone would treat his masterpiece in such a superficial way.

I know, I know.   It goes on all the time.  Product commercials, political campaigns, whatever.

But is it hip?  Is it cool?  No.  It’s stupid.

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