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Own Goal – The Singing Footballers

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Their goals might cause you distress, if they are scored against your team. But no torment the stars of football (or soccer, as you might call it) might inflict upon you can compare to the furious torture I am unleashing with this mix of unmitigated crap. And yet, if you are football fan, you might actually want to hear it.

In fact, you should. Art consists not only of beauty, but also expresses the dissonant dystopian future/present in which we are caught. And few do so more eloquently than football legend Johan Cruyff in his oompah-band stomper “Oei Oei Oei (Dat was me weer een loei)”, for in no language can you locate greater dystopian dissonance than in Dutch. Be careful, you might sing along with the honey-voiced Johan.

On July 7 the world will observe the 40th anniversary of West Germany beating the Netherlands 2-1 in the World Cup final (and let’s put to rest the legend of lucky Germany: in the second half they had a clear goal disallowed and an obvious penalty denied. So, 4-1). The winner was scored in the 43rd minute by Gerd Müller, the greatest goal scorer ever, who anticipated his subsequential  valiance in flat monotone in the same year of Cruyff’s aural assault.

The captain in 1974 was Franz Beckenbauer, who stayed clear from footballing sentiment in his heavy-accented 1966 Schlager hit, which nevertheless kicks off with the rhythmic clapping which seems to begin every football song of the era, just in case we mistake Franz for a serious singer. Which, it must be said, is fair enough.

More lately, players have turned to hip hop and dance music, usually with the help of some friends. France’s Karim Benzema did so to best effect in 2010, using the platform with French rapper Rohff to slag off previous France coach Raymond Domenech and express his dislike for Barcelona.

Not everybody shares Benzema’s bad-minding ways. On his record with something called Brings, Germany’s Lukas Podolski is asked whether he can sing. Podi responds, bright as a flash, by asking whether Brings can play football. It’s a relevant point to raise,in the event that Brings ever try to enter the world of professional football. The song is quite deplorable, so perhaps Brings might indeed be urged to seek a different career.

own_goal_2Unbelievably, some footballers genuinely thought that they had the talent to contribute to the world of pop in ways beyond the disposable aena of novelty. Kevin Keegan, with his Smokie-produced effort comes closest, but there is a reason why the whole world didn’t luvv it, just luvved it.

The contributions by Ruud Gullit (that cover!),  Andy Cole (doing bad things to the Gap Band) and Ian Wright are pretty dismal, but none was as appalling as Glenn Hoddle & Chris Waddle’s UK #12 hit “Diamond Lights”, a mulletted horror so offensive I felt compelled to exclude it from this CD-R timed mix for reasons of lacking in quality, for crying out loud (it’s there as a “bonus”, as the worthy anti-apartheid “South Africa”, which Gullit recorded with reggae outfit Revelation Time).

Cameroon legend Roger Milla does a straight song, about fatherhood. He has no discernable musical talent, however; the whole debacle is mitigated by the vocals of the talented Senegalese singer Julia Sarr. This was a single from Milla’s album Saga Africa. Imagine what the rest is like!

In the late 1980s, John Barnes was British football’s King of Rap. To this day, British hip hop fans whisper in hushed tones: “Before Dre, before Pac, before Snoop, before MC Hammer, there was Liverpool attacking midfield sensation John Barnes.” Barnes rapped on the notorious “Anfield Rap”, which reached #3 in the UK charts, in anticipation of Liverpool’s defeat to AFC Wimbledon in the FA Cup final. Britain remembered, and in 1990 he was allowed to rap on New Order’s World Cup song “World In Motion”. He gave us what one night describe as a sing-song accumulation of words which is a lot worse than the middle-age white dudes’ conception of the musical form of rap as perpetrated in the box-office hit Three Men and A Little Lady of the same year.

What John Barnes could do, Paul Gascoigne thought he could do better. So he ventured into the street  as rapping icon Gazza, and enriched the body of hip hop with the incisive social commentary of “Gazza’s Rap”. The backing track exploits every cliché of early 1990s dance music; Gazza’s rapping draws its influence from Kenny Everett’s “Snot Rap” from 1983.

One can laugh at almost every vocally-disoriented, good-sense-deprived footballer featured here, but Clint Dempsey’s rap gets a bye —he sounds even scarier than John Barnes and might find me to bust a cap in my ass, to employ the jargon of the circles in which Dempsey moves. There is no cause for mirth in Pelé’s bossa nova number; dude can’t sing, but it is quite nice.

Cristiano Ronaldo: Your moms want to bang him.

Cristiano Ronaldo: Your moms want to bang him.

 

The biggest laugh must be reserved for Cristiano Ronaldo’s bid at usurping Julio Iglesias’ crooner crown. It might have been for a TV commercial, but if Portugal’s Banco Espírito Santo in their best judgment thought it was okay to unleash the crooning talents of young Ron upon the world, I don’t think I’d trust them with my hard-earned cash.

This whole catastrophe is timed to fit on a CD-R, though I cannot conceive of circumstances which might drive you to committing this on to a disc. So I have not bothered to make home-scored covers. PW in comments.

1. New Order feat. John Barnes – World In Motion (1990)
2. Edcity & Ronaldinho – Vai Na Fé (2014)
3. Pelé & Gracinha – Meu Mundo é Uma Bola (1977)
4. Cristiano Ronaldo – Amor mio (2009)
5. Canelita feat Sergio Ramos – A Quien Le Voy A Contar Mis Penas (2012)
6. Castro feat. Asamoah Gyan – African Girls (2011)
7. Youri (Djourkaeff) – Vivre dans ta lumière (2000)
8. Andy Cole – Outstanding (1999)
9. Kevin Keegan – Head Over Heels In Love (1979)
10. Ruud Gullit – Not The Dancing Kind (1984)
11. Ian Wright – Do The Right Thing (1993)
12. Brings feat. Lukas Podolski – Halleluja (2012)
13. Rohff feat. Karim Benzema – Fais moi la passe (2010)
14. Clint Dempsey – Don’t Tread On This (2011)
15. Jay Jay Okocha – I I Am Am J J (1994)
16. TKZee & Benni McCarthy – Shibobo (1998)
17. Roger Milla – Sandy (1991)
18. Gazza (Paul Gascoigne) – Geordie Boys (1990)
19. Johan Cruyff – Oei Oei Oei (Dat was me weer een loei) (1969)
20. Franz Beckenbauer – Gute Freunde kann niemand trennen (1966)
21. Gerd Müller – Dann macht es bumm (1969)
Bonus: Glenn (Hoddle & Chris (Waddle) – Diamond Lights (1987)
Bonus: Revelation Time & Ruud Gullit – South Africa (1988)

GET IT!

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  1. halfhearteddude
    June 19th, 2014 at 08:26 | #1

    PW = amdwhah

  2. JohnnyDiego
    June 19th, 2014 at 15:54 | #2

    You’ve convinced me, Dude. After reading your scathing review of your own compilation I’ve decided to pass up what the World calls singing footballers, and I call singing soccer players, and listen to the 1985 Chicago Bears Football Shuffle. The only guy I know on the list is Franz Beckenbauer and only because I was in Germany in 1974 and watched the final game with a bunch of beer swigging Bavarians.
    Yup. I was swigging right along with them.

  3. June 19th, 2014 at 17:05 | #3

    Oh you make me so happy….

  4. byron felson
    June 19th, 2014 at 17:27 | #4

    re: Cristiano Ronaldo: Your moms want to bang him.
    I want to bang him….over the head with a baseball bat !

  5. The Purple Cow
    June 20th, 2014 at 09:36 | #5

    You could produce a similar album sung by cricketers, which would make this one sound like Joy Division.

    Exhibit 1.

  6. halfhearteddude
    June 20th, 2014 at 11:01 | #6

    Oh my…

    Would Hansie Cronje’s entry be “The devil went down to George”? (To soon?)

  7. Matt
    June 20th, 2014 at 23:05 | #7

    See, now I HAVE to burn it onto a CD.

  8. GarthJeff
    June 25th, 2014 at 15:32 | #8

    Too Soon ……halfhearted……the plane never got all the way to George (Georgia) that day ;)

    For the sake of your Australian fans lest THEY forget our Hansie.

    Exhibit 1:

  9. June 26th, 2014 at 12:03 | #9

    Oh, this post and mix were absolutely delightful, Dude.

    I don`t know if “God” himself (of course I`m talking about the one and only Diego) has actually recorded anything (and I truly wish he hasn`t…) but one can get a glimpse of his talent (?) in the following video, part of the Emir Kusturica`s 2008 documentary “Maradona by Kusturica”, where he sings “La Mano De Dios” (“The Hand Of God”), a song written about him (apart from Diego`s vocals, the rest of the particular musical arrangement really rocks):

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