Having had a lot of time on his hands recently, Getintothis’ Adam Chapman unleashes his anger on daytime TV producers and their use of his favourite bands’ music.
I’ve spent quite a bit of time unemployed (or in-between jobs…sounds better) in my post university life and in this time of great self-reflection I discovered a few things. You know what I hated most about being unemployed? It wasn’t the lack of money and it wasn’t the lack of purpose to my Tuesdays, it was in fact the absolutely brutal murder of some of my favourite songs being used as the backing tracks to daytime TV.
Now we all know daytime TV is a horrible thing for the most part. It saps hours away from hung over students who don’t pay their TV licences and can completely ruin your day off when you had so much planned but overslept by an hour or two. The main culprits are the BBC and their shows Bargain Hunt and Homes Under The Hammer. I ask for mercy so please just give them the black mask and battle axe and let them do away with every band I’ve ever held near, make it swift and painless, like ripping a plaster off.
It’s just the complete disregard for the bands whose posters covered my teenage bedroom walls. Sure, now I’ve grown out of a few but the nostalgia still remains heavily on my mind. It’s as if someone accidently left a copy of NME from 2007 in the waiting room and a random studio executive stumbled upon it and was like “Now this right here is how we’re going to appeal to the younger generation”. We all know the sort of person, someone who still uses words and phrases like “Randy” and “Having it off” when talking about a weekend of debauchery. If it sounds like I’m bitter, it’s because I am, let me explain why.
There I was casually switching my brain off against my will and watching Bargain Hunt, when all of a sudden I hear a familiar catchy guitar riff, upbeat and jaunty to the untrained ear it arguably suits the premise of car booting with your mate, wearing a colourful fleece and having cracking “banter” with the shows host.
HOWEVER, Fluorescent Adolescent by my all time favourite band and Myspace hero’s Arctic Monkeys is a song that should not in anyway have any association with the frolicking of the participants on Bargain Hunt. Lyrically the song is describing something extremely off putting for a daytime audience. I’m sure many of them did use to “Get it” in their fishnets, however I don’t want to have that image of Mildred, 67, from Basingstoke. She has spent the best part of the opening 3 minutes of the show telling the ‘hilarious’ tale of a bake sale gone wrong, I’m sure it was one of those “You had to be there” sort of stories, but for me, it does nothing.
Just watch the opening 20 seconds of this clip down below, that song you hear in the background is Scooby Snacks by Fun Lovin’ Criminals. A song that’s main message is about an armed bank robbery – you see it just doesn’t quite fit with pottering around the East Sussex town of Lewes with some flamboyantly dressed man. Later on in the episode, your ears are suddenly hit with “Whoop Whoop, that’s the sound of the police”. I looked it up, crime statistics for Lewes are far below the national average, but hey, Bargain Hunt is in town to no doubt commit some daylight robbery, that is as close as I can get to the thought pattern of the film editors and now my head hurts.
The reason I bring this up is to highlight the dangers of using songs without the right context attached to them. Remember a few years ago when the BNP used Manic Street Preacher’s If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next on one of their adverts? Now, one of the opening lines is “If I can shoot rabbits, then I can shoot fascists.” You can see what I’m getting at right? Lyrical context is incredibly important, it’s what paints the picture of a song, it’s the driving message of a track, so please in future, be careful.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not just the way in which these songs are crammed into shows willy nilly, but the frequency at which they’re used.
A few things happened for me to finally lose my patience with Kings of Leon and admit that they had, somewhere along the line, lost it. The first was walking into the kitchen at a Christmas eve party some years ago to find a number of my mother’s friends dancing around singing in harmony, albeit out of tune and in the wrong key, Sex on Fire. The second was when Use Somebody was included in every daytime TV show where something uplifting or emotional happened. A 60-minute make over for a lady who sprained her ankle 3 years ago? Use Somebody comes cascading in for the big reveal and everyone loses their collective minds. Speaking of which, don’t even get me started on Coldplay, but alas Chris and the lads, you were a lost cause, you just made Sophie’s choice that much easier.
I’m not saying that their music should be banned and I’m sure they will continue to keep using tracks from my favourite artists/bands so I guess what I’m pleading for is just that the music chosen should suit the context and content of the program. For example, How Clean Is Your House? – A Man Needs A Maid by Neil Young, or alternatively, Homes Under The Hammer – Fixing A Hole by The Beatles. I know the rights to this would be expensive, but if you’re willing to pay royalties to Alex Turner and co, then I’m sure you can spare enough cash for the remaining Beatles. There’s loads of cash in the attic apparently and I’m sure the upper story at the BBC is HUGE.