Jacob’s Fish Are Happy Fish

Born in Hammersmith
Went to school at Eton
Then Trinity College
Oxford
Presided over the Tory
Association
Went into the City
Started a hedge fund
Amassed what they call
A significant fortune
Estimated worth
150 million
Married into money
Helen The Chair
A mate of his sister’s
Who was always there

Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish

Moved into politics
In ‘97
Didn’t get elected then
Or even at the next ‘un
In Scotland they though he was
Too posh
Canvassing with nanny
Got a resounding 9%
Fuck off, toff
Complained to Piggy Cameron
That his quotas weren’t right
Said parliament oughta be
95% white
Nicked a speech off Trevor Kavanagh
Faked an interview and then
Got a seat in North East Somerset
In 2010

Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish

In parliament he became
King of the filibuster
Thought he was funny
With his history and verse
Holding the record in the Commons
For the longest word spoken
But spoke other words
That were even worse
Addressing members of the far-right
Traditional Britain society
Who would have some of us
Made deportees
And said quarter of a million quid
Spent on MPs portraits
Was just chicken feed

Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish

He got a hand up into government
From a fellow Old Etonian
Leader of the House of Commons, no less
Then was kept away from the mics and the cameras
After he said the Grenfell victims
Lacked common sense
Now , chief Eurosceptic
Out of all the Eurosceptics
Said Trump will be our best ally
After Brexit
He likes Brits to be Brits
And the poor to be poor
And says gay marriage
Still breaks the church’s law

Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish

He broke the lockdown rules
‘Cos he prefers a Latin mass
His relationship with god
Is more important, more pious
Than your relationship
With coronavirus
He wasn’t born to follow
He was born to lead
And his vicious defence of the status quo
Is just born of greed

Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
Jacob’s fish are happy fish
But Jacob can just fuck off

The Singles Club

No, not that sort of club.

After the success of Santa is English, we’ve decided for as long as we’re locked down we’ll produce and put out a new video every few weeks, recorded and shot in isolation but brought together by our nascent mixing and video editing skills and the power of the internet.

The first one lands this week, using up previously unreleased footage from the last time that we were allowed to meet up outdoors, after that, we really are flying solo (together).

According to Paul

Over eighty thousand people died
Or under four hundred according to Paul
Who doesn’t count the over-60’s at all
Or anyone with a pre-existing condition
Like asthma, diabetes or hypertension
Or maybe just walking with a limp.

(You can check out the numbers for yourself here).

My Postie’s Being Bullied by Iain Duncan Smith

My postie’s being bullied by Iain Duncan Smith
With his smug face and folded arms
On posters showing all his charmless DWP-ness
And shaming sick statistics,
A careless Tory trick which
Doesn’t mention COVID at all.
A deliberate omission
From a man in his position.
“43% are absent from work” he cries
To his allies
About workers they despise
Though, in truth, deserving of a pay rise
For tireless work on the pandemic front line
Getting your mail to you on time,
Because when it’s not just a touch of the ‘flu
Post every other day will do.
So, I am righteously miffed
That my postie’s being bullied by Iain Duncan Smith

Right Bullets, Wrong Gun

The right bullets fired from the wrong gun
Will miss their target one by one
There’s only one sharp shot in a Johnson
Now we’ve got the right bullets
In the wrong gun

When the truth as you tell it changes
From sunrise to sunset
When definitely safe means definitely not safe
This is the recoil that you’ll get
And you’re not as persuasive
As your Latin teacher told ya
And you’re relying on a fair wind
To get you that far
When no one believes you know
The what or the how
Not even JVT
Can help you now

The right bullets fired from the wrong gun
Missing their targets one by one
There’s only one sharp shot in a Johnson
It’s the right bullets
In the wrong gun

Don’t say
We are where we are
We are where we are, we are where we are
Where are we?
We are where we are
We are where we are, we are where we are
Don’t say where are we?

When the truth as you tell it changes
From speech to speech and ear to ear
When definitely safe means definitely not safe
This is the recoil that you fear
And you’re not as persuasive
As your Latin teacher told ya
And you’re relying on a fair wind
To get you that far
When no one believes you know
The what or the how
Not even JVT
Can help you now

The right bullets fired from the wrong gun
Missing their targets one by one
There’s only one sharp shot in a Johnson
It’s the right bullets
Fired by the wrong gun

Boxing Day

Henry Hooray Huntingdon Hunter
Pretends to no one it’s a trail hunt
With his pinks and his horse and his Boxing Day booze
He’s got the horn for a bit of sport
“I say, fine day” for folk of his sort

Julia Hooray Huntingdon Hunter
Would rather be a supporter
Her and her daughter
4×4 around
Checking out the hounds
And the horseback clowns

Terry the terrierman
Keeps his dogs in a box
Next to shovels and spades
Used to dig out a fox
King of the quad bike
A doffer of caps
Not the nicest of chaps

Sebastian, field secretary
The collector of subs
From the killers of foxes
And murderers of cubs
Rides at the rear
Prefers the hilltop scene
Likes to imagine that his hands are clean

Walter whips-in
For Henry Hooray Huntsman
Summoned to trouble shoot
By Henry Hooray’s horn
He’s paid to spot foxes
He’s paid to control hounds
To keep them out of the neighbours’
Gardens and grounds
But when called to explain
A fox ripped limb from limb
It was never anything to do with him

Inspector Carl Copper
See nothing wrong here
A country pursuit
That the locals hold dear
If there’s a breach of the peace
It’s not that of the fox’s
And he’ll brook no disruption
Or interruption
Of Henry Hooray Huntingdon Hunter’s day out
Today or any other day
He’ll just say “go away”

The hunt saboteur
Recognises them all
Julia Follower
Henry Hooray’s hunting call
Terry the terrierman
With his dogs in a box
Walter whipping-in
Denying chasing a fox
Sebastian the secretary
Who never gets near
And Inspector Ineffective
Who will see nothing here

So when you’ve finished the tofurkey
Tucked the last mince pie away
The sabs will still have work to do
On Boxing Day

Happy New Year!

In the meantime, may I wish you in advance every happiness for the New Year. If it’s anything like the old one, I, for my part, would sooner consign it to the devil.

Karl Marx, writing to Friedrich Engels, 27th December 1861

Gimme the vaccine, Maxine.

John Cooper Clarke, Walking Back to Happiness 1979

My late father would say keeping body and soul together. I never really gave the phrase much thought at the time but it’s a fair summary of the challenge that’s faced us all this year: the struggle for sustenance for our bodies: food, housing, medicine, employment; with none of that nutrition for the soul: live music, football, pub, socialising. At the end of the day a Zoom1 call is only so rewarding, particularly if that’s what your day-to-day work has become, and it can be a poor, though necessary, replacement for real human interaction.

Being in a band is all about that interaction, sharing the creative process, the synergy of playing in time and in tune with one another (like flapping your arms and finding out that you can actually fly) and the shared experience of band and audience that makes a great gig, well, great.

We’ve spoken elsewhere about what we’ve done to compensate for not being able to gig: the make-it-look-live videos, the live streams where we could and, of course, my sprawling COVID-19 drama set out in nearly 150 songs and poems, and while there’s no substitute for the real thing, online shows are here to stay and we can reach people that way who would otherwise never get to see us live.

But it’s New Year’s Eve, so let’s look forward. It’s big pharma2 (of all people) to the rescue and with a fair wind and a following sea the return of real football, real pubs, real music, and real people is coming, but with lessons learned, continuing to reach out to those who can’t get out, and not leaving newly created mutual aid structures3 behind.

Onwards into 2021, friends. Look after yourselves, look after each other and, in the wise words of his holiness, John Cooper Clarke:

Gimme the vaccine, Maxine.

Happy New Year!

Steve

  1. Other online meeting software is available.
  2. More on that another time.
  3. The extraordinary efforts of We Shall Overcome with Pauline, Joe, Matt and Pete at the helm have continued throughout the pandemic. We’re not going anywhere until we’re no longer needed.

‘Tis the Season to be Jolly Careful

We stream supporterless football
And pass punterless pubs
In tearful tiers
Over clubberless clubs

Now the variant’s British
And tranmission’s enhanced
Making quarantined skiers
Scarper home via France

The taxis are starving
Ambulances sated
Your Christmas tree’s wilted
And Santa’s deflated

We’ve got troublesome bubbles
With persistent coughs
While Boxing Day hunts
Ride with law-breaking toffs

“Christmas must be saved
Like St. Pauls, at all cost”
A spaffed exhaltation
Fingers firmly crossed

‘Tis the season to be
In tiers four, two and three
‘Tis the season to be
Jolly careful

The Golden-Haired Boy

It’s that awkward bit between Christmas and New Year when you’d struggle to find things to fill newspapers with anyway, never mind the pandemic, so one of the leading lights of the Tory press, riffing on the idea of Spaffer’s miracles following his rising from the near dead at Easter, publishes a story about his latest offspring’s wonderous artistic ability. Well, it is Christmas, and a story so preposterous that they couldn’t get a journalist to put their name to it.

It’s the Xmas perineum between the 25th and the 31st
You’ve eaten, drunk and been merry ‘til your fit to burst
There’s no football, no music, no pubs in Tier 4
Not much to do if you step out of your door

Is there anything to look forward to that ain’t austere?

Well, the golden-haired boy, just eight months old
The golden-haired boy, just eight months old
The golden-haired boy, just eight months old
Crafted a hand-painted image
Of a reindeer
Of a reindeer

There’s Driver Tizer lining the hedgerows of the Garden of England
British Variant COVID making its presence felt, and
Miles and miles of queues to get into Dover
Thousands of truckers wishing Christmas was over

Is there any news to help Tories be of good cheer?

Well, there’s a golden-haired boy, just eight months old
There’s a golden-haired boy, just eight months old
There’s a golden-haired boy, just eight months old
Who crafted a hand-painted image
Of a reindeer
Of a reindeer

‘Cos Spaffer might’ve nearly died for your sins
But it’s his miracle child that’s now the thing
With The Telegraph fawning over his painting
He’s clearly the one born to be king

This golden-haired boy, just eight months old
This golden-haired boy, just eight months old
(What number is he again?)
This golden-haired boy, just eight months old
Crafted a hand-painted miracle image
Hand-painted, miracle image
Of a reindeer
Of a reindeer

Santa is English

It’s been a tough year for bands.

It’s been a tough year for everyone.

We hit some real form with great shows at What’s Cookin’ and The Birds Nest when the curtain unexpectedly fell in March. We girded our loins and learned how to fake a live-but-beaming-in-from-different-locations video, which served us well for a couple of online festivals (and a massive shout out is due here for Joe Solo, Matt Hill and Pete Yen for getting WSO Isolation Festival not only off the ground but out in front of anyone else hosting online festivals, including the big corporates).

As soon as the noose loosened a little, we started the occasional socially-distanced park meeting with instruments and shot our video for the, now online, Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival in a little-known Walthamstow beauty spot.

Slightly less restricted again, we were able to just about stay two metres apart in Steve’s house where we played a few online gigs, either live or pre-recorded, and took advantage of the fine summer weather to enjoy each other’s company in the garden over a drink or two.

But then London went from tier two to tier three to lockdown to tier three and now tier four. Face-to-face ain’t happening but undaunted while more than a little disappointed, we thought we’d find out just what we could do together in isolation. Although The debased street music of the vulgar was all recorded at Steve’s house, this track had to be recorded in five houses on equipment ranging from mobile phones to inexpensive USB interfaces, free software and, in some cases, our employer’s laptop (shh!).

So here it is, our Christmas gift to you. We hope you like it. Keep smiling, keep fighting, and we’ll see you in the flesh soon with any luck.

Solidarity, brothers and sisters!

Russ, Lol, Simon, Andi & Steve

P.S. Get your free download here.