I wish I could Leslie Phillips to read out that title.
But it is true, isn’t it? (the title, not the Leslie Phillips bit). That great song from the Wizard of Oz entitled “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead” has been hijacked as a “protest song” against Margaret Thatcher.
Which has left the BBC with a bit of a dilemma. Whilst they can choose not to give it air play they have a problem with what to do during the “Official Top 40” tomorrow as this song is now in the Top 5. Well they did have a problem, until yesterday it was announced that the song would be played, but only for 5 seconds when it would cut to news footage.
As much as I blogged yesterday that I despise the “celebration” surrounding Margaret Thatcher’s death I think this is a ridiculous decision. Does that mean then that I think it shouldn’t be played at all? Nope. I say play it. Play all of it.
Because the Top 40 is an official account of the top selling music of the week. It has been around forever. It reflects what the public are buying. And if they are buying that song, well then the Top 40 should play it.
The BBC has no remit to ban the playing of this song and I would like to see the ruling they have used in doing so now.
I remember vividly Mike Read deciding he was banning Relax by Frankie Goes to Hollywood because he felt it inappropriate for a morning show. Fair enough. Interestingly whilst the BBC then also banned it from other shows they did permit it to be played on the Official Top 40.
Why not this then?
If you look at the list of songs banned by the BBC most of them are on the list due to the lyrics themselves. Either they mention drug use or are deemed to be sexually explicit. Or in the case of “Killing an Arab” by the Cure, inappropriate during the Gulf War.
What is inappropriate about this song? It is all about context, isnt it? The BBC are censoring this on the grounds of context.
They created this Ding Dong, not the song itself