Yes yes, many of us may have spent the day kind of sort of protesting against everything Barack Obama stands for, but, -giggle- just writing his name down makes us at DiS Towers blush like schoolchildren. And we’re not the only ones: Radio 4 yesterday asked listeners which five British films they’d offer the great man by way of reciprocity for the 25 Region One DVDs he gave our own dear premiere a few months back. Films? Yeah, they’re okay we suppose, but Obama is the first US president to genuinely be feted and adored by a generation of musicians; not only that, but he expresses an interest in what might loosely be called modern music (see his, er, amazing mixtape for Blender). So in the spirit of losing our shit over -swoon- President Obama, here’s the five British albums we’d present him with if only DiS's invite to discuss the state of the world hadn’t got lost in the post. One from each of the last five decades, just for breadth, like.
Noughties: Roots Manuva Run Come Save Me
As an American, Obama might not realise that the British have rappers. And as a fan of will.i.am he might not realise rap music can be good. And in all likelihood he’s probably uncertain as to what’s involved if one is to "drown ten pints of bitter". So pick of this decade would be Rodney Smith’s finest hour, killing all three birds with one mighty stone. Obama might also be tickled by the video to ‘Witness (1 Hope)’, which conveniently serves as an allegory for the last hundred years of US foreign policy.
Video: Roots Manuva 'Witness (1 Hope)'
Nineties: Oasis Definitely Maybe
In these times of financial woe, the president will doubtless be heartened by the almighty choonfest that is Oasis’s debut album, the lyrics of which are largely concerned with being horribly poor but not really minding, as it will DEFINITELY BE ALRIGHT IN THE END. That’s like the American Dream, that is. It may also explain why Oasis remain a popular institution 15 years after its use, in case he was (understandably) confused.
Eighties: McCarthy I Am A Wallet
Let’s not give Obama too easy a ride, eh? The gorgeous Smiths-alike tunes of the Essex quintet’s debut album will help the great man ease in nicely to what is basically the angriest record ever made, a broadside against Thatcherism of such acid intensity you could probably blind a Tory MP by gently waggling a copy in their face. Altogether: “_Take a look at that rich shareholder's smile, how many heads had to fall, before he could smile?_” Eh Obama? HOW MANY?
Video: McCarthy Well Of Loneliness
Seventies: The Clash London Calling
Admittedly this seems to be the Clash album that all Americans own anyway, but there’s not another UK record that manages to so wholly encompass the breadth, diversity, joy, paranoia, richness and poverty of life on our sceptered isle. Admittedly, The Clash are almost single-handedly responsible for propagating the myth that all Brits have terrible teeth, but you can’t have everything, can you?
Sixties: The Jimi Hendrix Experience Are You Experienced
What’s this? An album by a black American? Oh, but hold on, he made it in Britain? With a British band? And it was amazing and everyone looks back and says ‘wow remember that amazing thing that that black American guy did when he came over and did that thing with those English people in Britain?’ Listen to the subtext Mr President, listen to the subtext.
Video: Jimi Hendrix 'Foxy Lady'
DiScuss: what five British albums would YOU THE READER give to Barack Obama? Do you think he even really LIKES the music he claims to, or do you catch more than a whiff of trying to be all things to all people? And is our and our music heroes’ fondness for Obama getting a little embarrassing now that actual real politics are afoot?