They Are Not Kids And They Are No Longer United

Submitted by Janine on Sun, 28/01/2007 - 20:05

Shocking news indeed - Sham 69 have split up. Whaddyamean, you had no idea they were still going and assumed they had done the decent thing and split up nearly thirty years ago?! Actually, it was those ageing Hersham Boys who recorded England's official World Cup song last year, which you might not have noticed got to number 10, their first hit since the 70s.

What's more, it's an acrimonious split, Jimmy Pursey either kicking out, or being kicked out by, the other two geezers whose names no-one can remember. An unseemly but possibly amusing fight over the ownership of the band's name looms.

"For once in my life I've got something to say ..." sang Pursey on their second most successful single, 'If the Kids Are United', which reached number 9 in 1978. Has he still? Twenty years ago, he spoke out against McDonald's multinational exploitation when 'Kids' was used in a McAdvertising campaign after the rights to Pursey's songs had long since been sold. And in 2005, he performed a version of 'Kids' on Newsnight with the words altered to oppose the war in Iraq.

So yeah, Sham 69 were hardly the most serious and political products of the monumental punk rock revolution, but their demise (it's their third demise, actually, but hey) warrants a mention on JBlog.

YouTube has a surprising number of Sham 69 vids of varying quality, including, amusingly enough, the lads performing 'If the Kids Are United' on Jim'll Fix It. Anyway, as a final (probably) tribute, here's a video of them in their finest hour (probably), playing that same song to a rather more authentic audience:

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