Saturday, 17 November 2012

Songs About Shopping

I'm not a natural born shopper. I've been fortunate that I worked in a record shop and skateboard warehouse so that I got loads of free clothes, either promo merch or slightly faulty goods. But since I left that job over 3 years ago, the time has come to replace them as they fall off me as rags. I blogged on that whole mental minefield here in "Wardrobe Malfunction".

The only shopping I do is the weekly family grocery shop at Sainsburys supermarket. I've been doing this for so long now, I whisk through the store, knowing where everything is in double quick time. I used to require music to blot out everyone around me. But since I stood in the queue at a till and observed the person in front of me and ended up with a flash story out of it "5 Items Or Less", I find I'd rather keep my eyes and ears unclotted for the wondrous sights and sounds in a supermarket.

I do shop in bookstores, but often I know what I want, so it's a case of zeroing straight in to shelves, or asking my friendly indie shop owners. But now I'm faced with an imminent prospect of having to go clothes shopping. So I need a shopping soundtrack to buffer me, or to help steel my resolve.

Here's 10 shopping songs:

Store's Own Brand: Pet Shop Boys - "Shopping"
I mean it's even in their name, The Pet Shop Boys liked a bit of kitsch now and again.

VFM: The Coasters - "Shopping For Clothes"
God how I'd like these guys to accompany me in my own clothes shopping. Mellow... The one suit I do own was given to me by  a widow, it was her husband's...

BuyOneGetOneFree: Jonathan Richman And The Modern Lovers -  "Cornerstore"
Jonathan's lament for an old community store no longer there. Think we all lost that fight Jonathan... He also had a song called "Rockin' Shoppin' Centre" which would seem to go against the sentiment of "Cornerstore". But since it doesn't seem to be on YouTube, I can't let you judge for yourselves. Soz.

Organic Produce: De La Soul - "Shopping Bags"
When De La Soul broke into the Hip-Hop scene they were seen as a breath of fresh air. And yet now hip-hop and rap stars have their own huge brands of scents, drinks, fashion labels, jewellry. They shift as much merchandise as music. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted I think.

Manager's Choice: Tools You Can Trust - "Working And Shopping"
I love this song, played on found bits of metal and the like. Still, seems to me there's more about working than there is shopping in it.

Display Copy Only: The Clash - "Lost In The Supermarket"
This wistful song could only have been voiced by Mick Jones rather than Joe Strummer's guttural machine gun roar. The Modfather Paul Weller credits this song with influencing his song "Shopping".

Loyalty Card Points: Eek-A-Mouse - "Shopping"
The man with the best name in reggae - and he has some competition there believe me - gives a whole different vibe on the theme of shopping. "Biddy bung bung" indeed. I think I need this echoing in my eardrums when I'm pushing a trolley around.

Sale Item: Lily Allen - Nan You're A Window Shopper"
Remember Lily Allen, whatever happened to her? I windowshopped Lily Allen, but I didn't buy her records...

Unexpected Item In The Bagging Area: Jello Biafra And The Guantanamo School Of Medicine - "Strength Through Shopping"
Ex-Dead Kennedy frontman Jello Biafra may have a bit less hair, have a few more pounds on his girth, but he's still an angry satirist of American culture. Live the Dead Kennedys were pure theatre. Age seems to have slowed up Jello's seemingly boundless energy as a performer a tad.

Checkout: The Smiths - "Shoplifters Of The World Unite"
You just know Morrisey was far too fey to actually indulge himself in the five-finger discount. But junkie bassist Andy Rourke might just have to feed his addiction...

Bonus Item: Billy Bragg - The Busy Girl Buys Beauty
5 comments on the video, 4 asking about the guitar he's playing...

"Do you need help with your packing Sir...?"


James Everington said...

What about 'Shoplifting' by The Slits?

Sulci Collective said...

argghhh, can't believe I forgot that song! Would have been so superior to The Smiths too!

Thanks for pointing out my omission!

Hawksword said...

Sweetening the shopping pill with music...
I fear clothes shopping with you would be very similar to shopping with my reluctant teenager _ uncomfortable, uninterested, iPod turned up to 'deafening' in hopes of drowning out the whole experience, pleading "can we go now?" after every purchased item!
I would quite like to follow you round the shop at a distance just to see how you get on! ;-)

Sulci Collective said...

Ha you've got me nailed to a 'T' Denise!