Thursday, 9 January 2014
My Top Ten Gangster Songs
Let's go sleeping with the fishes... cement shoes optional.
10. Bruce Springsteen - Murder Incorporated
Always good to start the new year with a bit of Bruce... new album out Monday, boss-fans! (Can't wait.)
9. Fatboy Slim - Gangster Trippin'
Of course, I don't like dance music. Yet I always had a soft spot for Norman, as far back as his Housemartin days. This is one of his best - particularly the bit where he dips the tune in his bath and lets it slowly float to the surface.
8. Talking Heads - Gangster Of Love
In which David Byrne calls out Al Capone. I know who I find scarier.
See also this other famous Gangster of Love / Space Cowboy who speaks of the "pompatous" of love. (He made that word up.)
7. Alabama 3 - Woke Up This Morning
The theme tune to The Sopranos, of course. Although I never watched The Sopranos and I was into the A3 beforehand anyway. Really. I planted that flag. Shoot me if I'm lying.
6. Ice-T - O.G. Original Gangster
You could probably fill a horse's head with gangster rap songs. This is the only one I had space for... perhaps 'cos Ice namedrops Marvel Comics halfway through.
5. Kid Creole & The Coconuts - Stool Pigeon
Remember, if you want to squeal to the FBI, they can make a deal... make it worth your while. (And they like a guy who will stab a friend.) Ha-cha-cha-chaaa!
As Stephen Malkmus says in his excellent new song: "We grew up listening to the music from the best decade ever..."
4. The Specials - Gangsters
Terry Hall dreads to think what the future will bring... when we're living in gangster time.
3. Catatonia - I Am The Mob
Ah, Cerys, much as I enjoy your folky solo offerings and eclectic 6Music radio show, I'll always pine for the glory days of Catatonia. No one could sing "When duty calls, I'm gonna bust some balls," in quite the same way.
2. Morrissey - First of the Gang To Die
You probably expected this to be Number One, knowing your host, the Top Tenmeister General. It's certainly one of Mozzer's finest moments of the 21st Century: a touching love song to his Mexican gang chums / fanbase. And it's not his only gangster record either - I could easily have gone for Ganglord or the majestic Last of the Famous International Playboys, his slightly dubious ode to Reggie and Ronnie Kray. Ah, but, but, but...
1. Paper Lace - The Night Chicago Died
Go on, admit it, you really didn't expect this, did you? Not at Number One, surely? But they don't make 'em like this any more... some might say "for good reason". Me: I say, EMBRACE THE CHEESE!
Brother, what a night it really was
Brother, what a fight it really was
Sorry, Coolio fans, Paradise wasn't half a nice as any of these! But who's your Godfather...?