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Newsnight's Party Anthems

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Danny Robins | 12:10 UK time, Thursday, 22 April 2010

Sick of the election? I have the perfect antidote to the stuffy policy discussions and political bickering. BBC Two's Newsnight have sent me on a mission to turn the election musical. I'm coming up with anthems for each of the three main parties - think 2010's equivalent of Things Can Only Get Better.

The idea is to see if the power of music can really change the way people vote. To help, I've enlisted 3 great bands. None of the bands necessarily support the parties they are singing for - they're undertaking it as a somewhat bizarre musical challenge - a bit like Chas and Dave's famous footie anthem for Tottenham, but about politics, and even funkier.

We've had the bands in the studio recording songs and now we're shooting pop videos with them. The songs are sounding great (a lot better than my efforts to come up with anthems myself). Last week on Newsnight, I found myself rapping on stage at a food festival in Exeter to Ben Bradsahw, the Culture Secretary. My favourite line was when I compared Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling to Snoop and Dr Dre, though I think that was lost on Ben. I also sang a self-penned blues number in praise of the married couples tax allowance to Conservative Grant Shapps, and finished off with a spot of barbershop for Lib Dem Sarah Teather - with the help of the excellent Barbershopera. It's fun.

Here's how the songs are coming along:

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Next Wednesday (April 28th) will be when we reveal the finished pop videos. Can't wait. Beats the leaders debates any day...

Danny Robins is a writer and comedian.

More election fun


  • Comment number 1.

    I’m not sick of the election, but I still found your approach “SUPER-COOL!”
    Like your mission. Love the beginnings that I saw. Want to hear the finished pieces.
    Can music change political vibration? You know what? I think it can! Afterall, there have been very catchy political slogans, and the proof of the musical "debate" may be whether people start humming the tune, and better yet, singing the lyrics.

    Thanks for this piece of fun; it may turn out to be more serious than you thought.


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