Friday, 14 October 2016

My Top Ten Supermarket Songs (Volume 1)

This week, I thought we'd pop down the supermarket. This is Volume 1 because it's about specific supermarket chains. More generic supermarket songs will follow...

Sadly, I couldn't find any songs about Morrisons, Waitrose or Ocado...

10. FINE FAIR: Toy Dolls - Nowt Can Compare To Sunderland Fine Fair

After Jason Donovan, I have no more shame...

9. TRADER JOE'S: Tristan Prettyman - The Rebound

Tristan Prettyman cruises her local Trader Joe's supermarket looking for guys who are on the rebound. Watch out with that banana.

8. ALDI: Fat White Family - Breaking Into Aldi

In with a bullet, this brand new track from the FWF, with a little help from my second favourite Lennon child...

Heard this on 6music the other day and thought it sounded great.

I understand Marmite is still available in Aldi. No need to break in.

7. SAFEWAY: Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Safeway Cart

Neil Young has written so many songs, there will come a time when he runs out of subject matter. Here's one about a shopping trolley... from the same album on which he wrote a song about a Piece of Crap. Great album though.

6. ASDA: Suede - Asda Town

B-side of The Wild Ones, one of my favourite Suede singles; this actually sounds like the stuff Brett would release when he went solo a few years later. I saw him play live during that tour and it was a very special, slightly rakish, king of night.
And like the birds we'll fly tomorrow
And like the birds we'll fly
From your Asda Town
Never coming down
'Cos they're take, taking it away
I'd like to see Asda use this in their Christmas TV ad this year. Sod Take That.

See also Millionaire by The Puppini Sisters, which is rather nice too.

5. WAL-MART: PJ Harvey - The Hope Street Demolition Project

Brought to you by the owners of Asda...

Possibly stretching the idea of a concept album beyond its natural elasticity, but when Polly Jane kicks out on her latest album, she's as good as ever.
They're gonna put a Wal-Mart hereeeeee...
See also sunrise in a Wal-Mart Parking Lot by Clem Snide... it can be so beautiful.

4. STOP 'N' SHOP: Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers - Roadrunner

Yes, it is a real supermarket chain. Jonathan didn't make it up.

3. SAINSBURY'S: Saint Etienne - Teenage Winter / Amanda Palmer - Leeds United

This one was a tie.

Teenage Winter is possibly my favourite Saint Etienne track. Sarah Cracknell could read a shopping list and make it sound amazing. Plus, Bob Stanley really does love old records... as much as we do. This song is about the death of pop music as a physical object for teenagers to cherish. Once you get that, it's one of the most heartbreaking songs you'll ever hear...
Mums with pushchairs outside Sainsbury's
Tears in their eyes
They'll never buy a Gibb Brothers record again
Their old 45s gathering dust
The birthday cards they couldn't face throwing away
Teenage winter coming down
Teenage winter coming down
Still in Sainsbury's, we find Mrs. Gaiman flashing back to the time she was dating Ricky Wilson from the Kaiser Chiefs. He gave her a Leeds Utd. jersey as a pressie. She lost it.
But who needs love when there's Law and Order?
And who needs love when there's Dukes of Hazard?
And who needs love
When the sandwiches are wicked
And they know you at the Mac store?
No, the Mac store is not a supermarket. But I can't mention this song without quoting that chorus, because I love it. As for the supermarket...
Sure, I admire you
Sure, you inspire me, but you've been not getting back so
I'll wait at the Sainbury's
Countin' my change, making bank on the upcoming roster
I'm guessing maybe Ricky took her down the Leeds Sainsbury's one time too. He knows how to spoil a girl, that Wilson lad...

2. THE CO-OP: The Jam - A Town Called Malice

I give Weller a hard time on this blog occasionally... but when he's on form, no one can touch him...
A whole street's belief in Sunday's roast beef
Gets dashed against The Co-Op
To either cut down on beer or the kids' new gear
It's a big decision in a town called Malice
See also Saturday's Kids: Saturday's girls work in Tesco's and Woolworths! (Not anymore, sadly.)

1. TESCO: Half Man Half Biscuit - L’Enfer C’Est Les Autres

I had to give this One to Nigel Blackwell because not only does he use that gloriously misinterpreted quote from Sartre as his title (sadly, Jean-Paul wasn't quite being as misanthropic as Nigel and I might wish), but also because this track contains (among various other hilarious ramblings) perhaps the best Half Man Half Biscuit line ever... via Johnny Cash, of course.
I shot a man in Tesco, just to watch him die
From the top HMHB album 90 Bisodol. What else do you need to know? 

Some people don’t know how to walk on the pavement these days
Well it’s not that difficult, there’s hardly a whole host of waysHere they come, love’s young dream, arm in arm, approaching me 
Now, I’m not looking for your smile
I’m just asking for some single file 
But it’s not forthcoming so I have to assume 
That this narrow path belongs to you 
And therefore you must beThe Duke of Westminster and his good lady wife 
So, I tell you what, I’ll just walk in the road
How about I just walk in the road?
You stay as you are, and I’ll just walk in the road

How about that first verse? Is it just me...?

Other Top Tesco songs (I could have done a Top Ten, but I'm waiting for the sponsorship deal to kick in) came from Lily Allen (LDN), The Pogues (Rain Street*), King Krule (Easy Easy) and Glass Animals (Life Itself).

*Careful, that one's a bit rude.

Which one gets your custom? Whichever you pick, it's still 5p for a carrier bag...


  1. Hi...just found my way here via mutual blogs and love this. Really pleased to see your inclusion of Amanda Palmer's Leeds United - one of my favourite tracks from 'Who Killed...?' but for some reason I've rarely come across anyone else who knows much of her output. What with Suede, the Jam, HMHB, Saint Etienne too, right up my aisle!

    1. Always good to hear from another Amanda Palmer fan, C. I'm not sure how I stumbled across her a few years back... but I suspect it may have been through this blogging malarkey.

      Good to have you aboard.

  2. Excellent stuff Rol. The Fat White Family continue ever upwards in my estimation. Does Iceland count as a supermarket? There are some very big branches around. If so, 'Mum's Gone to Iceland' by Bennet would fit the bill.
    I could also suggest 'Beyond Safe Ways' by Bawl, but I'm pretty sure that the song has nowt to do with the retail company.

    1. If I'd considered Iceland a supermarket, Bennet would have been a challenger for the top spot. Or if I'd remembered that song while putting this together, I might have pretended I did consider it a supermarket...

      Now I need to think of a way to feature Bennet here.

      Top Ten Frozen Food Songs?

      Top Ten Iceland Songs?

  3. Saint Etienne! But for the video alone, you have to set an aisle out for Sleeper's Inbetweener

    *sighs* please Louise

    And remember, next time you're at the checkout and you hear the beep *BEEP-BEEP* think of the fun you could be having on...Rol's My Top Ten blog!

    1. Good call... come back next week. I can't promise anything, but...

  4. Either you put in a lot of labor or you have an encyclopedic knowledge of this topic in that noggin. Either way, mighty impressed. I'm going to put in a vote for a song from 1988 I only discovered a couple of years ago by a Bristol band called the Driscolls. Since then, I don't think a week has gone by without a play of "Girl I Want You Back." There is one line about a supermarket... "stacking shelves in Gateway, do do do do do" John Peel loved so much he used to air it just for those five seconds.

    1. It's mostly labour. Some of these posts have been percolating for years and I add new songs as I think of them until I reach a point when I think I can cobble together a decent Ten. Hearing the Fat White Family song tipped me over into writing this one up.

      Thanks for the Driscolls: I hadn't heard that before.

  5. Mis-spelling aside, Tesko Suicide by Sneaker Pimps?

    1. I really wish bands would brush up on their spelling, it'd make my job a lot easier.

      That said, I'd never heard Tesko Suicide before. Thanks.

  6. We're all going to Fine Fare
    They've got cheaper wine there

    Sadly I suspect it has never been a lyric on a sing though

    1. Dunno - sounds like a Carter lyric to me!

  7. Goldie Lookin Chain: Waitrose Rap.

    1. Thanks John - I was disappointed I couldn't find anything for Waitrose.

      Still looking for Morrisons...

  8. A few weeks later, I just remembered another Sainsbury's one.

    Chas 'n' Dave - Rabbit.

    I'm very disappointed none of you suggested it...

  9. I apologise on behalf of myself and the rest of your readership. We promise to try harder in future!


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