There’s a tradition/marketing gimmick in the UK about the honor of having the chart-topping single at Christmas time. (I never heard of this tradition when I lived in London, possibly because most of my friends were too incapacitated by drugs to tune their radios.)
Apparently for the past few years this contest has been won by Simon Callow and the winner of the latest season of ‘The X Factor’ with some loathsome ballad and this year was doomed to the same, with X Factor winner, Joe McElderry churning out a cover of a Myley Cyrus song. Until the internet kicked in and a grass-roots campaign on Facebook sent Killing in the Name of by Rage Against the Machine to number one, selling over half a million copies on iTunes.
RATM are donating the windfall to a charity for the homeless. They were interviewed on BBC radio and performed their song, which the BBC (rather foolishly) assumed they would self-censor. (Sample lyrics ‘Fuck you I won’t do what you tell me, Motherfucker!’.)
The coup-de-grace is this interview from the runner-up, Simon Callow’s creature Joe McEdlerry (pictured above) and his reaction to the song:
“They can’t be serious!” he said. “I had no idea what it sounded like. It’s dreadful and I hate it. How could anyone enjoy this? Can you imagine the grandmas hearing this over Christmas lunch?
“I wouldn’t buy it. It’s a nought out of ten from me. Simon Cowell wouldn’t like it. They wouldn’t get through to boot camp on The X Factor – they’re just shouting.”
They sure are. Not really safe for work, but Hey! It’s Christmas!