Some musical accompaniment for the journey
Part 1 on YouTube – Shoreditch to Deptford
A Transport of Delight, Flanders & Swann (1957) : a humorous song celebrating London’s buses. More about Flanders & Swann here.
My Old Dutch, Maurice Chevalier (not dated) : one of London’s ‘coster’ comedians / music hall singers performing one of his best known songs, representing the music halls around Shoreditch.
Uberlin, R.E.M. (2011) : Despite the Berlin theme of the song, the video was shot around Shoreditch’s Brick Lane.
Ghost Town, The Specials (1981) : While the song is about Coventry, the video was filmed in central and inner East / South East London – docklands before it became ‘Docklands’
Tower Bridge, Spike Milligan (1966) : a novelty record. Spike Milligan lived in Honor Oak Park as a young man, and briefly in Deptford after World War 2. Deptford, Lewisham and Catford are often mentioned in his writings.
Private Investigations, Dire Straits (1982) : from the album ‘Love over Gold’ – reputedly inspired by those words as a graffito in Deptford, where the band formed. A more recent mural has taken its place.
New Cross Fire, Sir Collins and his Mind Sweepers (1981) : this instrumental track was written in response to the New Cross Fire. Steve Collins, son of Musician Charlie – ‘Sir’ Collins was one of the thirteen young victims of this fire, the cause of which was never established.
Part 2 on YouTube – Deptford to Bromley
Hey Jah Children, Aswad (1980) : from the soundtrack of the film Babylon, set in and filmed in the Deptford area.
Foxtrot / The Whistler and his Dog, Bobby Pagan (1931) : believed to be played at the Regal Cinema, Glasgow on a 3/12 Compton cinema organ, similar to that installed at the Lewisham Gaumont (later Odeon). (the first few seconds of film show a Wurlitzer at the Kilburn Gaumont State cinema.)
Pulling Mussels (from the Shell), Squeeze (1979) : Another band with Deptford / Greenwich roots, this video consists of still photos taken of the band performing live at Lewisham Odeon in December 1979.
Brixton Lewisham, Tony T(h)omas (1963) : Ska track, possibly recognising the Jamaican community in Brixton and Lewisham. More on the Johnny Spencer music website here
Bankrobber, The Clash (1980) : Video largely shot in Lewisham, around Barclays Bank (Lewisham High Street), to a getaway car in Rennell Street. The box office and live performance are at the Lewisham Odeon – probably at the band’s concert on 18 February 1980.
Hong Kong Garden, Siouxsie and the Banshees (1978) : Siouxsie was part of what was described by a music journalist as ‘The Bromley Contingent’ in the mid 70s, this was the band’s first single, named after a Chinese restaurant in nearby Chislehurst.
The Bus Driver’s Prayer, Ian Dury and the Blockheads (1989) : Traditional parody on the Lord’s Prayer.