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Tag Archives: singing

I found this article in Red Pepper fascinating (and related to both Agit Disco and Conspiracy of Good Taste  ):

Raised voices: the UK campaigning choirs movement


Street choirs spring from various strands of progressive politics and protest singing. Many have their roots way back in the socialist and labour movements. The names of Birmingham Clarion Singers and Nottingham Clarion Choir, for instance, are tributes to the movement associated with the Clarion socialist newspaper founded in late 19th-century Manchester. Birmingham Clarion Singers was established in 1940″

Yes but this was a part of the Rational Recreations movement which strove to get working class people involved in ‘respectable’ rather than revolutionary activity. These choirs seem a bit more radical and political.

 “Today, the street choirs network numbers more than 50 choirs across Britain.”

Could they turn the tide with song?  Could singing in the street return to human activity after being banished by the good taste movement led by Sharp and others plus commoditisation plus mass media?

Is a new kind of songwriting going to emerge?

There is an initiative to make an oral history of the movement see more here:




London Met Occupation Song   click this link to hear song

“Senior Management at London Metropolitan University have revealed plans to cease recruitment on their highly popular and prestigious Philosophy, History and Performing Arts Degrees…”

My implied point here is that singing together is hugely unfashionable and that has became so in the later C20th Britain because of the unslaught against working class culture by middle class mediators and through commodification. BUT its difficult to replace singing together as a means to create and feel solidarity. Hopefully the younger generations will find ways back through the layers of embarassment to sing together again and to a purpose…. so this is just a good example to pin on that thought.