Banned by the BBC
› Jane Birkin – Je T’aime – Maybe it wasn’t helped by Serge Gainsbourg singing about the joys of going “entre tes reins” – between your kidneys – i.e. up your bum (alledgedly). On top of the pops an instrumental version by “Sounds Nice” was used – 1969 & 1974
› Frankie goes to Hollywood – Relax – Sexual references – 1983
› The Au Pairs – Come Again – Referred to orgasm – 1981
› Lil Louis – French Kiss – “Heavy breathing” – 1989
› The New Yorkers – Love For Sale – “Sexual” content – 1930??
› Judge Dread – Several records with titles as Big 6, Big 7,Big 8, 10 etc – “Sexual” content – 1972 – 1975
› Ivor Biggun – The winker’s song (misprint) – Sexually explicit – 1978
› Troggs – I Can’t Control Myself – The sound Reg Presley makes at the end of the song was said to be like someone climaxing. – 1966
› Rolling Stones – Lets spend the night together – Promoted promiscuity – 1967
› Cliff Richard – Honky tonk angel – Self imposed ban as “saint” Cliff didn’t know that a Honky tonk angel was a Hooker! circa ‘72 -’73.
› Adam Faith – Made You – Banned for lewdness/Sexual Content Double A-Side with “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” – 1960
› The Stranglers – Peaches – Considered “woman baiting” – 1977
› Scott Walker – Jackie – Reference to “authentic queers” – 1967
› George Michael – I Want Your Sex – banned only before the “watershed” – 1987
› Paul McCarney & Wings – Hi Hi Hi – Banned, not due to drug references but to explicit sexual lyrics – 1972
› Joe Brown & The Bruvvers’ revival of George Formby’s “My Little Ukelele” (1963, Piccadilly/Pye) was banned as “too risque”
› Max Romeo – Wet Dream – A song about his bedroom ceiling. No the BBC wouldn’t buy that – 1969
› Donna Summer – Love to love you – Groans & heavy breathing secured the ban – 1976
› The Prodigy – Smack my bitch up – Despite denials, this single was never herd during the day – 1997
› Pete Shelley – Homosapien – “SPIN Alternative Record Guide.” The book claims “Homosapien” was banned for containing the line “Homo superior in my interior.”(About 1982)
› Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band – Open Your Box – From the album of the same name and B side of a single, it was banned for containing the lyric “open your legs” – 1970
› Marxman – Sad Affair – Contained IRA slogan – 1993
› Police – Invisible Sun was banned (certainly by R1/TOTP, maybe others)
references to Northern Ireland (Barrel of an Armalite, etc.) – 1981
› Paul McCartney – Give Ireland Back to the Irish – Obvious – 1972
› Johnny Horton – Battle of New Orleans – Reference to “Bloody British” – 1959
› Hawkwind – “Urban Guerrila” – early 1970’s. Banned due to mainland UK terrorist attacks at the time.
› Sex Pistols – God Save the Queen – Anti monarchy – 1977
› Blow Monkeys – The Day After You – Anti Margaret Thatcher – 1987
› Split Enz – Six Months In A Leaky Boat – Too provocative (Falklands) – 1980
› Elaine Page/Julie Covington “Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina” Falklands Crisis – 1980
› McGuiness Flint – Let the people go – Government policy on the IRA – 1975
› Heaven 17 – (We Don’t Need This) Fascist Groove Thang” – The “All-Music Guide” says “Fascist Groove Thang” was banned by the BBC for its overtly political nature. (About 1981)
› Six Months In A Leaky Boat. – ‘Split Enz’ 1984 – During the Falklands war, their song that went ‘I just spent six months in a leaky boat, Lucky just to keep afloat.’ I think that you might have to be careful about using the term “banned”. E.g. During the Falklands those records were not banned as such, but local BBC radio DJs were asked to think carefully about what to play – especially close to news bulletins on the war. Martin Cloonan firstname.lastname@example.org
Political 2 – The Gulf War 1
All these recordings were banned during the gulf war in 1990.
Jose Felicano & The Doors – Light My Fire
Something Happens – “Parachute”
The Cure – Killing an Arab
Little angels – Bone yard
Massive Attack had the word “attack” dropped during the gulf war.
Bomb the Bass also suffered during this period.
‘The Word,’ listed 64 songs on its February 1st program that BBC Radio have deemed “unsuitable” to play during the Gulf Crisis: Lee McMurray
A-ha Hunting High And Low
Alarm 68 Guns
Animals We Got To Get Out Of This Place 5.
Arrival I Will Survive 6.
Joan Baez The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down 7.
Bangles Walk Like An Egyptian 8.
The Beatles Back In The USSR 9.
Pat Benetar Love Is A Battlefield
Big Country Fields Of Fire
Boomtown Rats Don’t Like Mondays
Brook Bros. Warpaint
Arthur Brown Fire
Kate Bush Army Dreamers
Cher Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)
Eric Clapton I Shot The Sheriff
Phil Collins In The Air Tonight
Cutting Crew I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight
Skeeter Davies End Of The World
Desmond Dekker Israelites
Dire Straits Brothers In Arms
Duran Duran View To A Kill
Jose Feliciano Light My Fire
First Choice Armed And Extremely Dangerous
Roberta Flack Killing Me Softly
Frankie Goes To Hollywood Two Tribes
Eddie Grant Living On The Frontline
Eddie Grant Give Me Hope Joanna
Elton John Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting
Johnny Hates Jazz I Don’t Want To Be A Hero
John Lennon Give Peace A Chance
John Lennon Imagine
Jona Louis Stop The Cavalry
Lulu Boom Bang A Bang
McGuinness Flint When I’m Dead And Gone
Bob Marley Buffalo Soldier
Maria Muldaur Midnight At The Oasis
M*A*S*H Suicide Is Painless
Mike And The Mechanics Silent Running
Rick Nelson Fools Rush In
Nicole A Little Peace
Billy Ocean When The Going Gets Tough
Donny Osmond Soldier Of Love
Paper Lace Billy Don’t Be A Hero
Queen Killer Queen
Martha Reeves Forget Me Not
B.A. Robertson Bang Bang
Tom Robinson War Baby
Kenny Rogers Ruby (Don’t Take Your Love To Town)
Spandau Ballet I’ll Fly For You
Specials Ghost Town
Bruce Springsteen I’m On Fire
Edwin Starr War
Status Quo In The Army Now
Status Quo Burning Bridges
Cat Stevens I’m Gonna Get Me A Gun
Rod Stewart Sailing
Donna Summer State Of Independence
Tears For Fears Everybody Wants To Rule The World
Temptations Ball Of Confusion
10 CC Rubber Bullets
Stevie Wonder Heaven Help Us All
› The Moontrekkers – Night Of The Vampire – morbid /”scary” content (backing group to Rod Stewart, produced by Joe Meek – 1961
› Sam M.Lewis – Gloomy Sunday – Too mournful – 1930??
› Mike Berry & The Outlaws – Tribute To Buddy Holly -“morbid concern” for a dead teenage idol – A Joe Meek masterpiece – 1961
› Ricky Valance – Tell Laura I love her – banned because of the reference to dying in a stock car race? – 1960
› The Downliners Sect’s 1965 EP, “THE SECT SING SICK SONGS” was banned for poor taste/morbidity; it included a cover of Jimmy Cross’ – I WANT MY BABY BACK (where a necrophiliac boyfriend digs up & jumps in his girlfriend’s coffin)
› Napoleon XIV – They’re coming to take me away ha-haaaa – Preceded rap by some 25 years. Man going bonkers over lost dog – 1966
› Paul Simon – Kodachrome – Advertising – 197?
› The Kinks – Lola – was originally banned because it mentioned Coca-Cola, was later changed to Cherry Cola to get airplay. – 1970
› Paul Simon – Me and Julio – Originally banned for referring to Newsweek magazine. – 1972
› Dr Hook & the Medicine show – The cover of Rolling Stone – Advertising – 1972
› Dr Hook & the Medicine show – The Cover of the Radio Times – Tried to get around the ban by sucking up to the BBC with this version! – 1972
› Danny Williams – “You’re Fabulous Babe” – 1977. Banned due to advertising. Babe was a perfume.
› Pink Floyd – IT WOULD BE SO NICE, April 1968. The lyrics mentioned the British newspaper The Evening Standard. The record could not be played on UK radio. As a result, Pink Floyd had to spend about $1000 to replace the Evening Standard with Daily Standard to appease the BBC. The record failed in the charts despite the touch of controversy. Another thing, the copies sold in shops were the Evening Standard version, but all releases available now are the corrected version.
› Jimmy Buffett’s single, “come Monday” contained the line, “I’ve got my Hush Puppies on.” Since the BBC considered this to be advertising he re-recorded that line so it said, “I’ve got my hiking shoes on.”
F Word – Part 1
37 Tracks Unlikely To Be Herd On Daytime Radio In The UK Anytime Soon…
• Fuck Me Pumps – Amy Winehouse – Frank
• Who The Fuck Are The Arctic Monkeys? – Arctic Monkeys – Who The Fuck Are The Arctic Monkeys?
• Fuck Forever – Babyshambles – Down In Albion
• Fuckin’ With My Head (Mountain Dew Rock) – Beck – Mellow Gold
• Get Fucked Stud – Biffy Clyro – Puzzle
• Fuck You – Cee Lo Green – The Lady Killer
• Get Your Hands Off My Woman Motherfucker – The Darkness – Permission to Land
• Mother Fucker From Hell – The Datsuns – The Datsuns
• Too Drunk To Fuck – Dead Kennedys – Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables (Disc 2)
• You Fucking Love It – Dirty Pretty Things – Waterloo to Anywhere
• This Fucking Job – Drive-By Truckers – The Big To-Do
• Still Don’t Give a Fuck – Eminem – The Slim Shady LP
• Fucking In Heaven – Fatboy Slim – You’ve Come A Long Way, Baby
• Big Bad Mean Motherfucker – Girls – Album
• Fuck You, It’s Over – Glasvegas – A Snowflake Fell… (EP)
• Who the Fuck? – Graham Coxon – Sky Is Too High
• Fuck the Valley Fudge – Grandaddy – Excerpts From the Diary of Todd Zilla
• Fucking Ada – Ian Dury & The Blockheads – Laughter
• Fucking song – Jarvis Cocker – Further Complications
• Fuck The People – The Kills – Keep On Your Mean Side
• Your Fucking Sunny Day – Lambchop – Thriller/Hank
• Fuck You – Lily Allen – It’s Not Me, It’s You
• How Fucking Romantic – The Magnetic Fields – 69 Love Songs, Vol. 1
• Fuck It, I Love You – Malcolm Middleton – A Brighter Beat
• Bloody Mother Fucking Asshole – Martha Wainwright – Martha Wainwright
• Fuck Tha Police – N.W.A. – Straight Outta Compton
• Fuckin’ Up – Neil Young & Crazy Horse – Ragged Glory
• Fuckin’ In The Bushes – Oasis – Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants
• You Fuckin’ Die…! – Pixies – Surfer Rosa & Come On Pilgrim
• Sexy Mother Fucker – Prince & The New Power Generation – The Love Symbol Album
• Song For The Deaf (The Blind Can Goes Get Fucked Remix) – Queens Of The Stone Age – First It Giveth (Single #1) [UK]
• Fuck School – The Replacements – Stink! [Deluxe Edition]
• Man Don’t Give a Fuck – Super Furry Animals – Outspaced
• Some People Try to Fuck With You – Teenage Fanclub – Mellow Doubt
• Fuck Nicole – The Teenagers – Reality Check
• Peace The Fuck Out – Travis – 12 Memories
• My Shit’s Fucked Up – Warren Zevon – Life’ll Kill Ya
A Few More With The Offending ‘Word’ Too Prominent To Gain Daytime Airplay.
› John Lennon – Working Class Hero – 1970
› Black Grape – “Shake your money” – 1995 Use of F word.
› Linda McCarytney – The light comes from within – Even the inclusion of the F word & being dead she can’t get a hit! – 1999
› Richie Kavanagh – “Aon Focal Eile” Banned in Britain because first syllable of “Focal”, (the Irish for “Word”) sounded too much like “Fuck”…
› The Rolling Stones – Star Star. Despite the title being changed, the words star fucker (repeated dozens of times) could still be herd in the chorus! – 1973
Banned but saved by the radio edit – F word part 2
› Radiohead – Creep – Edited to make the F word disappear – 1992
› Beautiful South – Don’t marry her have me – Originally titled and contained the line “Don’t marry her fuck me” – 1996
› Prince’s “Sexy Motherfucker” which was renamed “Sexy MF” 1992
›The Stranglers – “Peaches” The lyrics were changed for radio. 1977
› XTC – “Respectable Street”, from ’82, lyrics about abortion, sex positions, and neighbors retching over each other’s fences were replaced.
› Monty Python’s “Always look on the bright side of life” where “Life’s a piece of shit / when you think of it” was replaced to suit the BBC’s tastes.
Thanks to Liam O’Brien for most reminding me of the following…
› Lemonheads-“Big Gay Heart”. Lyrics changed from “suck my dick” to (comically) “duck my sick” for radio play. Also “piss me off” to “tick me off”
› Smashing Pumpkins-“Vieuphoria” (video) on back cover “Silverfuck” re-named “Silvercrank”.
› Puff Daddy & Jimmy Page “Come To Me”, obviously all single versions had F-word deleted, but the Japanese Import single had Godzilla roars over the swearing moments.
› Marilyn Manson-“Beautiful People”. They rerecorded a version substituting “every other hater” for “every mother fucker”, but left the word “shit” on their that had to be blanked out when played.
› MC5’s-“Kick Out The Jams”, first recorded use of motherfucker, banned by major chain in US (can’t remember who, might be Wal*Mart) so the band ran a full page advert in mags saying FUCK…(whoever it was). Fucking Heroes ay? Then they got dropped by the record company, SPINELESS BASTARDS!!!
› When the Sex Pistols were taken to court for their album title “Never Mind The Bollocks” and the judge decreed that “Bollocks” isn’t a swear word. HOORAY!!!
› Ce Lo Green – Fuck You – 2010 – Banned for obvious reasons, however managed to reach No 1 in the UK charts by changing the words & title to ‘Forget You’. NOTE on Austraila’s Tripple J Radio & US Sirus Satalight stations they have no problem playing the original un edited version during daylight hours!
› Nero & The Gladiators’ – “Hall Of The Mountain King” was banned for its spoken intro-a short beatnik query about the location of “the king’s pad” – 1961
› Roberta Flack – Killing me softly – Reason Unknown – 1973
› Mungo Jerry – Have a Whiff on Me – Drug references – 1971
Banned by “Top of the Pops” (BBC)
› D-Mob – We Call It Acieed – Drug reference – 1988
› The Pouges – A pair of brown eyes – Video ban – 1985
› Bjork – Alarm Call – For her animated nipples! – 1998
Lonnie Donegan – Digging my Potatoes – 1956
This song seems to be generating more discussion than any other banned recording….
Lonnie Donegan’s single “Digging My Potatoes” was banned in the UK and US on its release in 1956 for lyrical references to sex, including the following (from memory so approx.):
“suck on my [sweet?] bone”
“I thought you was [sic] my friend until I caught you in my bed”
“I love you best between the sheets”
Given the above I think it’s remarkable that Decca chose to release it on any format, let alone as a follow up to the transatlantic hit “Rock Island Line”!
Hope this helps… Andrew Rose email@example.com
The Lonnie Donegan song “Diggin’ My Potatoes” was banned in 1955. The reason was that it included the line, “Thought you were my friend till I caught you in my bed”. The “bed” in the song is another word for “garden”. Also the verse, “Love you in the winter/ Love you in the fall/ But in between them blankets, baby/ I love you best of all”. It was to be issued as a single that year, but after the ban it wasn’t. It is only availible on EP’s. Many mothers broke the EP’s when the children bought them. A few still survive.
This song was on the same EP as his two smash hits “John Henry” and “The Rock Island Line”. The banned song didn’t hurt Lonnie’s popularity, though. He had hits on the charts until the Beatles (his own followers) took over the charts.
Sean Gaston – Lonnie Donegan’s “Digging my potatoes” was certainly issued in UK as a
single on the Decca Jazz label, with “Bury my body” on the flip side. I once
owned this record on a 10 inch 78 rpm record. C.Pryce firstname.lastname@example.org
Banned in the USA (Probably UK)
The Beatles – A day in the life – Banned in the ’60’s for drug references – 1967
Rolling Stones – Stoned – Original B side to I Wanna be your man – Drug references – 1964
Ten Years After – Good morning Little Schoolgirl – Under age sexual references – 1969
Chumbawamba – We Are the World – Explicit direct action support – 1985
Junior Delgardo – Broadwater Farm – Prophecising riots – 1985
Mark Dinning – Teen Angel – Called a “death disk” – 1960
Falco – Psycho Terror – Line “all Vienna is on heroine” – 1979
The Heptones – Fattie Fattie – Lewd and suggestive
Napolean XII – There Coming to Take me Away – Reference “mentally challenged” – 1966
Smoke – My Friend Jack – Was indeed banned because of drugs refs (my friend Jack eats sugar lumps, my friend Jack eats sugar lumps … he’s been travelling everywhere) – 1967
Eurythmics – Sex Crime (1994) – Reapeated use of the words ‘Sex’ & ‘Crime’ – 1984
Chef – Chocolate salty balls – 1998 -Apparently the US public have filthy minds!
Although the Marvin Gaye Record Sexual Healing was not banned, The DJ’s On UK’s national “Radio One” had to drop the word “sexual” from the title!
Tom Petty’s “You Don’t Know How It Feels” was censored on MTV so that the line “let’s roll another joint” became “lets hit another joint.”
When the video is shown on VH1, “roll” is left in, but the word “joint” is mangled so that it is impossible to make out (it sounds like the word is being played backwards).
Brian Eno’s Album “My life in the bush of ghosts” now exclude the track “Qu’ran” (in the UK) due to serious fatwahs from Islamic fundamentalists.
Banned By The BBC – 1931 – 1957
Issued in September 2008, this triple CD catalogues a lot of the ‘censored’ recordings between 1931 & 1957.
1. We Can’t Let You Broadcast That – Long, Norman
2. Minnie The Moocher – Calloway, Cab
3. With My Little Ukelele In My Hand – Formby, George
4. Untitled – BBC Dance Orchestra Directed By Henry Hall
5. Song Of India – Dorsey, Tommy & His Orchestra
6. She Had To Go And Lose It At The Orchestra – Messner, Johnny
7. With My Little Stick Of Blackpool Rock – Formby, George
8. Gloomy Sunday – Holiday, Billie
9. House Of The Rising Sun – White, Josh
10. God Bless The Child – Holiday, Billie
11. Story Of A Starry Night – Miller, Glen
12. Light A Candle In The Chapel – Sinatra, Frank & Tommy Dorsey Orchestra
13. Deep In The Heart Of Texas – Crosby, Bing
14. La Petite Tokinoise – Baker, Josephine
15. Don’t Let’s Be Beastly To The Germans – Coward, Noel
16. Paper Doll – Mills Brothers
17. Say A Prayer For The Boys Over There – Durbin, Deanna
18. I’ll Be Home For Christmas – Crosby, Bing
19. Blue Danube – Jones, Spike & His City Slickers
20. Till The End Of Time – Como, Perry
21. Rum And Coca Cola – Andrews Sisters
22. I’m Always Chasing Rainbows – Como, Perry
23. Cradle Song – Sinatra, Frank
24. Christening Tony – Askey, Arthur
25. Sabre Dance – Herman, Woody
1. We Have To Be So Careful – Beverley Sisters
2. Huggin’ And A Chalkin’ – Mercer, Johnny
3. Foggy Foggy Dew – Pears, Peter
4. Deck Of Cards – Tyler, T. Texas
5. I’m Nobody’s Baby – Howerd, Frankie
6. Sixty Minute Man – Ward, Billy & The Dominoes
7. Send Me To The ‘Lectric Chair – Melly, George
8. It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels – Wells, Kitty
9. I Went To Your Wedding – Jones, Spike & His City Slickers
10. Answer Me – Laine, Frankie
11. Crying In The Chapel – Lawrence, Lee
12. Hank Janson Blues – Shelton, Anne
13. Devil Is A Woman – Jeffries, Herb
14. Such A Night – Ray, Johnnie
15. Hold My Hand – Ray, Johnnie
16. My Friend – Fisher, Eddie (1)
17. Honey Love – Lotis, Dennis & Ted Heath & His Music
18. Keep Me In Mind – Roza, Lita
19. Story Of Three Loves – Martin, Ray & His Orchestra
20. Cuddle Me – Lotis, Dennis
21. Heel – Kitt, Eartha
22. Sincerely – Liberace
23. Cross Of Gold – Regan, Joan
1. Stranger In Paradise – Four Aces
2. I Heard The Angels Singing – Laine, Frankie
3. Man With The Golden Arm – May, Billy Orchestra
4. Bewitched – Fitzgerald, Ella
5. John And Marsha – Freberg, Stan
6. Greensleeves – Beverley Sisters
7. Walk Hand In Hand – Martin, Tony
8. St Theresa Of The Roses – Vaughan, Malcolm
9. Mack The Knife – Armstrong, Louis
10. Woman Love – Vincent, Gene & The Blue Caps
11. Diggin’ My Potatoes – Donegan, Lonnie
12. Maggie May – Vipers Skiffle Group
13. Toll The Bell Easy – Les Hobeaux
14. Garden Of Eden – Vaughan, Frankie
15. Rose And A Baby Ruth – Hamilton, George IV
16. Old Dope Peddler – Lehrer, Tom
17. How Little We Know – Sinatra, Frank
18. Puh Leeze Mr Brown – Bassey, Shirley
19. Burn The Candle – Bassey, Shirley
20. Silver Madonna – Stevens, Kirk
21. Rock You Sinners – Baxter, Art & His Rock ‘N’ Roll Sinners
22. Sky – Clark, Petula
23. Love Is Strange – Mickey & Sylvia
24. Honeycomb – Rodgers, Jimmie (2)
25. Rose And A Candy Bar – Hamilton, George IV
Up For Discussion
As the BBC won’t admit to even having a banned list, here are some of the candidates that I have received. Some of these suggestions may have been banned at some time.
“I Love a Man in a Uniform” by The Gang of Four came close to being banned — if not banned for a time — because of its overt criticism of the Falklands War.
Did not Frank Zappa get banned because of his single – Bobby Brown?! email@example.com
I believe that Carter USM’s “Bloodsport For All” was also banned by Radio One at the time of the Gulf War – Mike Hartland firstname.lastname@example.org
I agree with Mike Hartland. I distinctly remember Bloodsport for All by Carter USM being banned during the Gulf War. I think several record shops also refused to stock it.
Dan Carney email@example.com
The Beatles song I Am The Walrus was banned from BBC radio because it contained the word ‘knickers’ Steve Farrell S.J.Farrell2@student.derby.ac.uk
Banned in Australia & possiblly elswhere – The Royal Guardsmen “Snoopy vs the Red Baron” (1967) was played on radio with the word “bloody” beeped out: “The (beep) Red Baron of Germany”. It sounded ridiculous, but it was a No. 1 hit here.
The Beatles’ “Ballad of John & Yoko” (1969) was played on radio with the word “Christ” edited out of the chorus; another No. 1 hit.
The Troggs’ “I Can’t Control Myself” (1966) was banned for radio airplay. The single was, for example, a Top 20 hit in Sydney. Lindsay Martin firstname.lastname@example.org
As I understand it, Tina Turner’s song “Private Dancer” had to be edited before the BBC would play it–not because of references to prostitution, but rather because it contained a reference to American Express, which went against the Beeb’s ban on advertising. I believe the offending phrase was changed to “pounds sterling.” (I may be wrong, of course; I wasn’t in the UK at the time, and I only heard about it in the US press.) Terence Foraker email@example.com
I’m not sure, but wasn’t “Eight miles high” by the Byrds also banned, due
to drug reference? Tobias Andrasson firstname.lastname@example.org
During the gulf war I remember Simon Bates at the birthday spot for Edwin Starr playing a song other than War, because he it was ‘inappropriate’. He sounded apologetic about this so it may not have been his idea to play something else.
Gordon Taylor email@example.com
The Beatles – “Come together” was banned by the BBC for the words coca cola. David Campbell firstname.lastname@example.org
“3 am Eternal” by the KLF had a section at the start of the record taken out by Radio 1 during the Gulf War. It was the sound of a machine gun being fired. Richard Doy email@example.com
I didn’t see the song/album listed by the artist Ice T. I know that it was banned for the song “Cop Killer”. adecker firstname.lastname@example.org
Radio One wouldn’t play Deeper or Promise by Delirious, because they are a ‘religious band’. The obviously didn’t catch on that so were Sixpence None The Richer.
Also, Cliff was temporarily banned with his ‘Millennium Prayer’ single, again because it was Christian. Ewan Jones email@example.com
Sorry to disagree, but the Cliff record was not banned, but simply not played because it was a dreadful record! JW.
Sorry to stick my nose in but didn’t some of the songs like Terry by Twinkle, Leader of the Pack by the Shangri-Las and Pipeline by The Ventures also get banned at one time???
Obviously Terry and LOTP was due to the dumped lad riding off and “deliberately” crashing their motorbikes but I heard that Pipeline was banned because it was a slang term for a condom in the States, but I don’t know that one for sure.
Also what about Gary Gilmores Eyes by The Adverts, brill track.
Another song brought to mind by your brilliant (& nostalgic) page is “Moratorium” by Buffy Sainte Marie, on the flip side of the Soldier Blue single. It was a juke box hit here in Gt Yarmouth because it contained the words “fuck the War and bring all our brothers back home again”, naturally in 1972(ish) all us teenagers would quite happily sing along to this at the top of our voices.
On the banned list I didn’t see Birmingham 6/Streets of Sorrow by The Pogues I think it was banned due to anti-terrorism legislation for suggesting that some people in British jails were innocent and questioning whether Irish people where at a disadvantage when brought before the courts.
For perhaps inclusion in the ‘Banned’ section, the Anti-Nowhere League had their first single ‘Streets of London/So What’ banned for obscenity as it fell foul of the obscene publications law. Check out the ANL website – http://www.antinowhereleague.com/history.htm
Leon Rosselson and his Ballad Of A Spycatcher which featured Billy Bragg and members of the Oyster Band singing lyrics containing hints from Peter Wrights banned Spycatcher book. Rosselson said of the song:
Written to challenge the ruling of the three Law Lords that Peter Wright’s book Spycatcher – a biography on his work as…a spycatcher for the British government – could not be published in this country, nor could the press quote from or refer to any of the material in the book. It took me two days to devour the book and regurgitate it (including even the odd lump in intact quotation) in these memorable verses. So the song was definitely illegal, and the least we could hope for was a blanket banning from the airwaves. Alas, after some initial hesitation, a single of the song started to receive radio play and even rose to number 7 in the NME indie singles charts. So much for subversive intentions…
I remember hearing it on a Simon Bates mid morning show on Radio 1 in 1987, with a big run up to the actual playing along the lines of him expecting a court order (or the police) demanding that he not play the song; he did, they didn’t. But it was generally frowned upon, just the same.