Thursday, 28 April 2016

#LondonSongs – Three Greats From London Walker Barbara Sweet @JhabiteSe1

With the launch of The Rolling Stones Walk on the 5th May 2016 and the return of the Rock'n'Roll London Pub walk on Wednesday nights from the 4th May 2016 the London Walks summer programme 2016 will feature no less than FIVE regular musical-themed walking tours.

To mark the occasion, April is Music Month on The Daily Constitutional!

A month of plaques, locations, facts, reviews and more lies ahead. And I'm compiling the Ultimate London Playlist – get in touch with your favourite London song or piece!

DC Editor Adam writes… During Music Month I'm collecting London music to shape The Big London Playlist. Get in touch with your faves!

This via Twitter from London Walker Barbara Sweet…

All good ones Barbara, thanks! They're on The Big London Playlist NOW!

The Lambeth Walk is woven into the fabric of our city. King George VI and Queen Elizabeth were reported to have joined in with the "Oi!" responses when they attended Me And My Girl at the Palace… that's the Victoria Palace theatre rather than Buck House. 

Famous housepainter Herr Hitler and his chums in the Nazi propaganda business described it as "Jewish mischief and animalistic hopping."

Cheeky blighter. Only one response to that, if you'll excuse the interruption Barbara… and that response is a song. 

March time, altogether now 1! 2! 3! 4!

"Hitler has only got one ball
Goering has two (but very small)
Himmler is very similar
But poor old Goebells has no balls at all"

The famous wartime satirical song has numerous claimants stepping forth for ownership of the lyric - which speculates on the genital arrangements and proportions of the Nazi top brass. And who wouldn't want to claim authorship of such a rough-hewn satirical diamond? The rhyming of Himmler with "similar" is pure genius.

The tune, however, has only one father – Kenneth J. Alford, born Frederick Ricketts in the parish of Shadwell, East London in 1881. Colonel Bogey remains his most famous tune…

But back to Barbara's selections

Knocked 'Em in the Old Kent Road is a music hall classic. It was written in 1891 by Albert Chevalier who specialised in Cockney songs, earning him the nickname The Costers' Laureate. Your selection gives us the opportunity to add Stanley Holloway to the Big London Playlist for a third time…

Parklife by Blur has an impeccable London pedigree. The video was filmed down by the Pilot pub on the Greenwich Peninsula. The track features on the album of the same name – the sleeve photography for the album was captured at Walthamstow dog track.

Here's the track…

And here's the famous video…

Thanks Barbara!

The full Big London Playlist 2016 – so far! – is here…

A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at

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