The Singapore Parliamentary General Election 2015 will be held on Friday, 11th September. Election fever is high as many people are gearing towards the big day to vote. Green fields are packed nightly as the crowds throng to these open areas to listen to what candidates for this season are going to rant, chant, promise or present during these hustings.
I am not qualified to write about any election topic since I'm no poli-tikus (Malay: political rat or the coffee-shop humbug; an endearment actually). What I have done for this posting was to connect the Singapore General Election results between 1960's and 1970's with song hits in the same period using four simple tables taken from Billboard Hot 100 Number 1 Singles of 1965, 1968, 1972 and 1976.
The Barisan Sosialis boycotted the first session of parliament and on 8th October 1966 announced the resignation of all its nine members, leaving the People's Action Party (PAP) with a monopoly.
(image from Mun Chor Seng above: monochrome TV showing Pasir Panjang Constituency where PAP candidate Othman Wok had highest votes).
|August 7||"I'm Henry VIII, I Am"||Herman's Hermits|
|August 14||"I Got You Babe"||Sonny & Cher|
|September 4||"Help!"||The Beatles|
"Help!" was another top tune n 1965. Did The Beatles movie help in the song's success? Or did it help to sell marijuana? "A hell of a lot of pot was being smoked while we were making the film. That helped make it a lot of fun," remarked Ringo Starr.
In Singapore it was otherwise because a total ban and tough stand on marijuana (ganja) and drugs by the anti-narcotics bureau, under the direction of the government, kept the island clean. "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" (1967) and "Yellow Submarine" (1966) were banned. Was "Help"?
|April 13||"Honey"||Bobby Goldsboro|
|May 18||"Tighten Up"||Archie Bell & the Drells|
|June 1||"Mrs. Robinson"||Simon & Garfunkel|
Five opposition parties – the Barisan Sosialis, the Workers’ Party, the People’s Front, the United National Front and Pertubohan Kebangsaan Melayu Singapura (PKMS) – contested the next general election held on 2nd September 1972.
|September 2||"Alone Again (Naturally)"||Gilbert O'Sullivan|
|September 16||"Black and White"||Three Dog Night|
|September 23||"Baby, Don't Get Hooked on Me"||Mac Davis|
|October 14||"Ben"||Michael Jackson|
|October 21||"My Ding-a-Ling"||Chuck Berry|
How appropriate the song because the course we attended had students from Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Korea, Fiji and NZ:
The ink is black, the page is white
Together we learn to read and write
A child is black, a child is white
The whole world looks upon the sight
A beautiful sight.
In NZ three other hits from 1972 stayed glued in my mind, even up till today because these songs were played practically every day and every where in Wellington. Beautiful Sunday, Me and Mrs Jones, Killing Me Softly With His Song and Mother and Child Reunion. Only Roberta Flack's Killing Me is a '73 song.
By then I was involved in my work with young adults and hardly had time for political chats and popular songs.
|November 13||"Tonight's the Night (Gonna Be Alright)"||Rod Stewart|
The following general election after 1976 was on 23 December, 1980 and beyond the period of this blog and its pop song coverage.
So there you are dear readers. If you remember a song to connect with a particular election year and an incident you remember, do write in. Especially if it was between 1960 and 1980.
On the evening of 11th September 2015, you will sing with a special joy because, that night's "the night" when the results are out and everything's "gonna be alright" for the next five years. Hopefully!
“This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”
- William Shakespeare, 'Hamlet'
You Tube Video by: J.K.elley
Images: Google and Mun Chor Seng (copyrights).
*NB: It is possible that some of the above songs were banned in Singapore those years and would not have been played on air. Let me know.
An original article.
11th September, 2015.
Polling Day Today:
9/11 and those eligible are going to cast their votes today. Lines of people who wish to go early were ready with their identity cards or passports and polling slips this morning as the special stations all over the island were opened at 8.00 am to receive the more than 2.4 million Singaporeans.
The outcome of the GE2015 will be made known after 8.00 pm tonight on local TV and other media outlets. Check it out.
The ruling pop group hits the right notes and won the Award again by winning most of the seats in the Singapore Parliamentary Elections 2015. Congratulations to the People's Action Party and PM Lee Hsien Loong.