Pearly kings, the black cab, the big red bus, the Queen Mother, Big Ben… images of London you’ll never forget. But mix them up with sixties style psychedelia and you have amazing video. Add some great music to the mix too.
That’s ‘London Calling‘ – an anthem created by punk rockers The Clash, but now covered by Adrian Edmondson and the Bad Shepherds. They mix folk instruments – mandolin, guitar, low whistle, violin – with punk classics,and a bit of folk music seeps in at the edges, too.
Folk music is re-acquiring its street cred these days. The media has only just caught up with it – Karen Tweed, Eliza Carthy, the Oysterband have been going long enough that you might think the news had been around for a while. (The Oysters do a great cover of New Order’s Love vigilante… ) But there does seem to be a new spirit of adventure in the folkie world and the Bad Shepherds are definitely part of it.
What I love about this video, though, isn’t just the music. It’s the wonderful way Crazy Girl takes all those classic London images – even Sherlock Holmes makes an appearance; so does the Globe – and makes a psychedelic remix out of them. Nothing touristy or cliched about these images – there’s a vibrant and indeed flagrant life to them.
Photo by Geishaboy500 on flickr