The Bangin’ Man
The Bangin’ Man
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It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, as someone or other once famously wrote. Forty years ago, with Merry Xmas Everybody and Everyday, Slade (Jim Lea, Don Powell, Noddy Holder, Dave Hill), a true working-class English rock band from Wolverhampton, enriched our drab, miserable lives in the UK – during an almost State of Emergency austerity period filled with strikes, the three-day work week, regular power cuts and television ending each night at 10pm – with pop singles as good as any made during the 1970s.


Messrs Holder and Lea crafted some memorable tunes and welded them singable yet observant lyrics – and one of their best, arguably being the follow-up to those two aforementioned hits, The Bangin’ Man. It was Slade’s homage to the pop star lifestyle on the road – Noddy sets the scene of a man in a hotel, unable to recall much of what happened the night before, and the lady beside him locks herself in the bathroom, and enters the banging man, hammering away on the door.


And the song invariably wanders – nay, smashes – into my mind every time I pass by Jonathan Borofsky’s Hammering Man located outside the Seattle Art Museum, as he constantly bangs away with his hammer. There are many Borofsky Hammering Man sculptures (of various sizes) around the globe, and each has its own unique number, this one being 3277164. The sculpture is a symbol of the working man’s struggle – and the one in Seattle kinetically hammers away 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 364 days of the year. The one day off it gets being, fittingly, on Labor Day!


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HC-110 (Dil.H – 1:63 @ 8:30 minutes)

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