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Saturday, April 10, 2010

Why Were So Many Songs Banned: 60's n 70's

Many Singaporeans screamed when the Singapore authorities banned, Puff The Magic Dragon (1963) and Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds (1967). We think that only this island ban songs over the airwaves. 

It's a myth because below are the titles of 60s and 70s songs that have been banned even in Western countries because of moral, military, religious and political motivations. Even up till today some of these songs have not been played on certain broadcast stations.
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Music censorship is the practice of restricting free access to musical pieces and range from the complete prohibition of the piece to the removal of content when it appears in a certain context. 

There are definitely extremities in lyrics as Yoko Ono's *Open Your Box (1970) proves, but to ban **Tell Laura I Love Her (1960) is questionable.

So you be the judge:
*"Open your box,/Open your box,/Open your trousers,/Open your thighs,/Open your legs,/Open, open, open, open, oooh./Open, open, open, open,/Open your legs,Open your flies,/Open your ears,/Open your nose,/Open your mouth,/Open, open, open, open, oooh.

Open./Open your cold feet,/Open, open,/Open, open, open, lets open, lets open the cities./Open the cities,/Open, open, open the world,/Open, lets open the world./Open, open, oooh/Open, open, ooh!"

**"No one knows what happened that day/Or how his car overturned in flames/But as they pulled him from the twisted wreck/With his dying breath, they heard him say/Tell Laura I love her/Tell Laura I need her/Tell Laura not to cry/My love for her will never die..."

The Beatles: Come Together (1969) - product advertising
Rolling Stones: Lets Spend The Night Together (1967) - sex?
Cliff Richard: Honky Tonk Angel (1973) - HTAngel = hooker

Adam Faith: Made You (1960) - sex
Paul McCarney n Wings: Hi Hi Hi (1972) - sex
Donna Summer: Love To Love You (1976) - breaths, groans

Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band: Open Your Box (1970) - obvious
Paul McCartney: Give Ireland Back to the Irish (1972) - obvious
Johnny Horton: Battle of New Orleans (1959) - 'bloody British'

Ricky Valance: Tell Laura I Love Her (1960) - death
Mungo Jerry: Have A Whiff On Me (1971) - drugs
Lonnie Donegan: Digging My Potatoes (1971)

The Beatles: A Day In The Life (1967) - drugs
Rolling Stones: Stoned (1964) - drugs
Ten Years After: Good Morning Little Schoolgirl (1969) - sex

The Coasters: Charlie Brown (1959) - ?
The Everly Brothers: Ebony Eyes (1961) ?
The Kinks: Lola (1970) - product advertising

The Beatles: Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds (1967) - drugs
The Four Aces: Stranger In Paradise (1953) - ?
Bobby Darin: Mack The Knife (1928) - gang violence


In certain cases censorship is not permanent and banned songs have been known to be given airplay again. Do you know why the songs Charlie Brown, Ebony Eyes and Stranger In Paradise were not played over the airwaves once upon a time? Tell us.

Image: google
Information: Wikipedia Songs and various websites.
Original article: Andy Lim

4 comments:

BC Teoh said...

Andy, I see nothing wrong with the lyrics of "Tell Laura I Love Her" too. The song has nothing to do with moral, military, religion or politics. What's you guess?

Andy Young* said...

It's banned by a broadcasting station in the West because of the theme of death in a stock car race.

Personally I don't see anything wrong with the lyrics. Perhaps it's the morbidity of the topic?

Even the song, 'Ebony Eyes' by The Everly Brothers has the same theme of death.

Anonymous said...

Hi Andy,

There is a website and book about banned songs called Taboo Tunes.

http://www.tabootunes.com/thebook.html

There is lots of interesting info there

Steve

Andy Young* said...

Thanks Steve. I shall check it out.
It's a very interesting topic to read and discuss.