Just Like ’77

Ding Ding! The Witch Is Dead

Interesting to see that ‘Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead’ stalled at #2 on the chart, unable to knock Duke Dumont off the top spot. Many will no doubt view this through cynical eyes, as it mirrors a similar situation 36 years ago when ‘God Save The Queen’ by the Sex Pistols failed to beat Rod Stewart to the summit, although a large percentage of people within the industry believed sales figures had been manipulated in order to save the royal family embarrassment amidst the Silver Jubilee celebrations.

In the case of ‘God Save The Queen’, the BBC had banned the record from the airwaves, whereas this time around an outright ban on a song taken from the soundtrack of one of the best-loved movies of all-time, ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ (1939), would have been seen as somewhat absurd. Instead, the BBC Radio 1 controller Ben Cooper decided it wouldn’t be banned, but Sunday’s Official Chart Show would not play the 51-second song in full, restricting it to just 5 seconds! Further to this, when the chart was published on the BBC’s website, despite every other Top 40 track having a play function included (with the exception of the explicit ‘High School’ by Nicki Minaj & Lil Wayne), there was none for either ‘Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead’ or the ironic ‘I’m In Love With Margaret Thatcher’ (#35), an old Punk track from 1979 by The Notsensibles, written as an irreverent and satirical comment re the then new Prime Minister, but taken up by her supporters this week in a counter-campaign to try to head off ‘Ding-Dong!’ (the Notsensibles song had appeared in the film about her, ‘The Iron Lady’, from last year):

Which all goes to show that good old censorship is still alive and well, albeit via not so ingenious new methods, in the Britain of the 21st Century.


God Save The Queen Wikipedia:

Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead Wikipedia:

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3 Responses to Just Like ’77

  1. Derek Kaye April 15, 2013 at 9:52 am #

    Oh the Irony
    ‘Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead’, from the film ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ made it to number two. But out of 60M+ people in the UK, only 52,605 people wasted 79p on the song.

    People who bought it were people who didn’t like Margaret Thatcher much or didn’t like her political views. Presumably they also didn’t like the people who surrounded her, or supported her during her tenure as Prime Minister.

    Apple, who take a 30% commission from iTunes downloads will have made £12,467.38 from it, but where does the rest go? Who owns the rights to the film and the song? Who gets the 70% of the money from the downloads? That’s £29,090.57.

    Ironically, the rights to the film ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ and the song ’Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead’ are owned by – Rupert Murdoch!

  2. Salv Macasil April 15, 2013 at 10:34 am #

    “Ironically, the rights to the film ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ and the song ’Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead’ are owned by – Rupert Murdoch!”

    This appears to be some new urban myth, and I’ve seen it stated a few times recently. The film was made by MGM, which is now owned by MGM Holdings Inc, but the film itself is actually owned now by Turner Entertainment who bought it from MGM in 1986. In 1996, Turner merged with Time Warner. None of these companies is owned by Rupert Murdoch and it appears that Ted Turner will profit.

  3. BALEARIC PUNK (@killingjokedub) December 24, 2016 at 12:47 am #

    millions purchased this tune. out of 63 million people in the uk,only 12 million voted tory. says a lot.

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