Food For Song

We are sent into unnecessary mayhem whenever a traditional holiday comes along. But why do we do it? Does anybody even remember why St Patrick was a pisshead or why we throw batter mix off our kitchen ceilings to see in lent?


While we’re in the spirit of not really giving a rat’s ass about the history, we thought we’d play follow the leader and check what culinary delights find their way into song on this Ash Wednesday! Our hand-picked five songs will face their toughest test yet – to find out if they’re good enough to represent the food they’re so loyally named after! Think of each of these songs as a national anthem for that particular piece of food and you’ll get the idea of where we’re going with this. Commence the battle of the ear and the tongue!

System Of A Down – Chop Suey

Although System Of A Down may have intended to contrast the stark cultural differences connected to martyrdom and suicide, it’s cryptic to some what they intended with this hit. Regardless, a good Chinese dish like this one has all the makings of a knockout meal – the kind where you finish consumption and feel all warm, hazy and bloated inside. Feel the contrasts of stark green pepper drizzled with black bean sauce – your mouth is watering, right? Chop Suey certainly made a splash when the video single hit our screens in 2001.

Tom Waits – Ice Cream Man

“I’ll be clickin’ by your house about two forty-five, Sidewalk sundae strawberry surprise.” It’s an opening line that just oozes confidence. But what else could you really expect from the legend that is Tom Waits? The 1973 song isn’t actually a cover of John Brim’s track of the same name, which many people misconceive, but it is equally good if not better. Much like the icy snack that inspired Waits, it’s the ultimate summer treat – suave, cool and finger-clickingly good. If every ice cream man drove into housing estates with this on instead of the Match Of The Day theme tune, they’d double their business.

Warrant – Cherry Pie

It’s hard to resist a fine slice of cherry pie to say the least. Twin Peaks fans will know all too well that one of the coolest detectives in history was partial to a slice of the stuff with a hot cuppa’ jo! Feel the pastry crumble so beautifully as the succulent cherry juices drip down your face. It’s just ever so sweet. Much unlike this diabolical song by glam metallers Warrant. Vocalist Jani Lane wrote the song in fifteen minutes! If we were lenient we could almost justify their coy metaphor on the grounds they’re a hair metal band. But in reality these guys butcher a delightful sweet by twisting it into something rather dirty. Gosh.

Robert Johnson – Dead Shrimp Blues

On one level, this song might be about a man waking up in the morning and finding his tasty shrimp dead. But on another it can be interpreted as a lament for impotence. Nevertheless, this is one of many songs we can call a classic from the master of blues and pioneer of rock n’ roll Robert Johnson. We’re hardly taken away to the delights of a five-star bourgeois restaurant with this track, but it’s a short but stunning number nevertheless.

Mr Bungle – Egg

Mike Patton is probably named on countless other lists for one thing or another, so why wouldn’t Mr Diversity have his name on this list too? Exactly. Truth is, Mr Bungle make such a simply cooked, basic food sound like something with a seriously deranged mindset that you can’t turn your back on. The weird jazz experimentalists do something very strange with your mind on this song. Trying to fry an egg to this music should be against the law!


Here are some of our other favourite selections that didn’t quite make the final cut:

Harry Belafonte – Banana Boat Song

Tom Waits – Eggs and Sausage

REM – Orange Crush

The Ink Spots – Java Jive


The Locust – The Half-Eaten Sausage Would Like To See You In His Office

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