The Things You Learn

So I ordered Eddy Grant’s Killer on the Rampage based on the strength of its thirty-one year old hit “Electric Avenue”:

And I learned the following in my Internet research to find the album the song was from:

  • Electric Avenue refers to Brixton Avenue in London, which was the first market street to be lit by electric lights in the 1880s.
     
  • The song itself refers to the 1981 Brixton Riots, a “confrontation” between residents of Brixton and the police. The Wikipedia entry gives you a full panoply of excuses for the riot, but it’s the usual economically depressed populace of a one race reacts violently to the death of one of their own that they blame on members of the police who are of a different race.
     
  • They include ’1981′ in reference to this riot because there have been others, such as the 1995 Brixton Riot which broke out, in a stunning turn of events, when economically depressed populace of a one race reacts violently to the death of one of their own that they blame on members of the police who are of a different race.

Do I sound a little dismissive of race riots? Well, they are just about the same as people turning cars over and lighting them on fire after a sporting event. Message: Something bad happened to our team. In these cases, and in the cases of race riots in our country, it’s something bad happens to someone on a team who was not exactly a team player.

At any rate, it’s an interesting trail of things to learn from a couple minutes looking for an album title. And this afternoon, the album should arrive (on vinyl, natch). I look forward to it, since I haven’t bought a new album in a while.

One Response to “The Things You Learn”

  1. dustbury.com » Hitting the Brixton Says:

    [...] Brian J., motivated by the sound of Eddy Grant, rocks down to Electric Avenue, and gets engrossed by the history thereof: The song itself refers to the 1981 Brixton Riots, a “confrontation” between residents of Brixton and the police. The Wikipedia entry gives you a full panoply of excuses for the riot, but it’s the usual economically depressed populace of a one race reacts violently to the death of one of their own that they blame on members of the police who are of a different race. [...]