"Last Day Of The Miner's Strike" as written by and Burt F/cocker Bacharach....
Kids are spitting on the Town Hall steps
and frightening old ladies,
I dreampt that I was living back
in the mid 1980's.
People marching, people shouting,
people wearing pastel leather.
The future's ours for the taking now,
if we just stick together.

And I said "Hey, lay your burden down.
Seems the last day of the miners' strike,
was the Magna Carta in this part of town"

Well my body sank below the ground
it became as black as night,
overhead the sounds of horses hooves,
people fighting for their lives.
Some joker in a headband was still
getting chicks for free.
And big brother was still watching you
back in the days of '83.


Well, by 1985 I was as cold
as cold could be,
but no-one's underground to dig me out
and set me free.
'87 socialism gave way to socialising
so put your hands up in the air
once more the North is rising


Sing Hallelujah, sing Hallelujah,
Don't let them fool you again
sing Hallelujah

By now I'm sick and tired of just
living in this hole,
so I took the ancient tablets, blew off the dust,
swallowed them whole.
Oh come on let's get together,
oh come on the past is gone.
Well the very first Commandment,
Come on! Come on, let's get it on!
Let's get it on!


Lyrics submitted by Screwjack

"Last Day of the Miners Strike" as written by Jarvis Branson Cocker Burt Bacharach

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group, BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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Last Day of the Miners' Strike song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentYeah its about the NCB-NUM strike in the 80's which was a turning point in the way the unions were able to challenge Thatchers government. Sheffield was in the Yorkshire coal fields, and the National Union of Miners had their headquarters in the city. At this point Sheffield was colloquially known as the Socialist Republic of South Yorkshire, and was very strongly behind the miners.

    The second verse of the song, makes reference to "sinking underground" "black as night" which is returned to in the next verse as "But no-one was underground to dig me out and set me free". Read this as him being coal and the miners no longer working down the pits.

    Horses hooves, and fighting for their lives (livelihoods, or self esteem) is also literal, reflecting the vicious battles that took place between the police and miners picketing the mines.

    Big Brother, as in Orwell's 1984, not the reality TV show.

    Sick and tired of living in this hole; reflects the buried theme and Cockers feelings about Sheffield. He left Sheffield to study in London, and now lives in Paris.

    A quick pun on tablets, and the revival of the city through service industries, especially clubbing. (e.g. Gatecrasher)

    If you don't know what the magna carta is, then ask your school for a refund.
    matthewsheffieldon May 10, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI have no clue what this song is about, but that doesnt make it any less awesome
    King of Some Islandon September 18, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe song refers to the miner strike in UK in 1984-85, I know that Russell Senior was into that strike, I think he distributed flyers during that time (not sure, my memory may fail, taken from Story Common People from the BBC).

    Also reference to Dire Straits in the line "Some joker in a headband was still getting chicks for free".
    Mikepoweron June 04, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentJarvis' comments
    From Mojo, February 2003:
    We had to do a new song contractually but we wanted to do something good, and that wouldn't seem out of place with everything else on the record. It didn't seem appropriate to go off on some speed garage trip at the end of the album. Candida come up with the Burt Bacharach sample, but the words were problematic.
    I'd had this dream where I was listening to this John Lennon song, woke up and realised it wasn't a Lennon song; I wrote it down and tried to remember the tune. It's a bit iffy writing about the Miners' Strike when I don't know that much about it. When it was on, Russell was going out on pickets all the time, but I had no interest in politics at the time. I kinda regretted it later. I tried to make the song more allusive rather than some Billy Bragg thing.
    thateuandgelookon November 15, 2010   Link

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