A feature in today’s Independent (5 April 2012) recalls the role of protest songs in expressing opposition to the 1982 Falklands’ War.
The article recalls Crass’s How Does It Feel (To Be The Mother Of A Thousand Dead)? single which:
had been written towards the conclusion of the conflict but was recorded and released in the months after. Singer Steve Ignorant sounded perilously close to coughing up a lung on the single, such was his fury with the commander-in-chief. “What made me so angry was I knew there were people of my age or younger, saying goodbye to their wives and families and probably never coming back,” he remembers. Although they were a fringe concern for the wider public, Crass’ apoplectic release caught the attention of both major political organisations. Conservative MP Tim Eggar attempted to have the band prosecuted under the Obscene Publications Act while they simultaneously received letters of support from the Labour Party. “I was really scared at that point,” adds Ignorant. “Firstly, I didn’t want to be involved in party politics, but I also felt that if I was becoming too much of a nuisance for the Government, it wouldn’t take too much for me to just disappear one night.” Nevertheless, the single still topped the indie charts in November of 1982 and the similarly indignant offering “Sheep Farming In The Falklands” repeated that success the following year.
Hardeep Phull. 2012. ‘Protest songs: Marching to the beat of dissent’. The Independent. 5 April.