'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Pretty self-explanatory
johnfoyle
Posts: 14606
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Mar 23, 2008 10:05 am

I saw a newspaper picture from the political campaign

A woman was kissing a child,
who was obviously in pain

She spills with compassion, as that young child's face in her hands she grips

Can you imagine all that greed and avarice coming down on that child's lips?


So goes the first verse of Tramp The Dirt Down , Elvis' commentary on Margaret Thatcher.
At the time, 1989, I had a rough memory of the picture , thinking of it being the typical political opportunist tactic etc.

Out of pure curiosity I'd like to see that image again. However , no matter how many image searches I make I just can't find it. Maybe someone here has access to print sources covering Mrs Thatcher and could share it with us.

A long shot..........but you've surprised me before!

It's not this -

Image
Devoted mother and politician: Margaret Thatcher with her children Carol and Mark in 1959

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8856
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Sun Mar 23, 2008 7:53 pm

No googlejoy for me either. You'd have thought it was findable if it was, indeed, a particular pic. Maybe he imagined it for the purpose of the song. I couldn't find Thatcher kissing anyone!
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

johnfoyle
Posts: 14606
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Apr 20, 2008 11:01 am

Still no joy in finding this. Since Elvis first sang this song on a Irish radio show in June 1987 the image almost certainly comes from the British General Election campaign of May'87. The photographer Tom Stoddart has a number of Thatcher photos from that time in the Getty archive. I e-mailed his site asking if he had taken such a photograph but he replied that he hadn't. I've sent general queries to the photo. depts. of a few newspapers. The Times replied that they don't supply images to the general public ; the others - The Guardian and The Telegraph - didn't reply.

Hopefully someone here may have better luck ; I'll make other inquiries as time allows.

For the moment this image may amuse-

Image
'Margaret Thatcher leads a sing-song in the Bull Inn, Dartford' c. 1950's.

User avatar
Lester Burnham
Posts: 235
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2006 4:55 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Lester Burnham » Sun Apr 20, 2008 11:44 am

What lovely sideburns she has...! :shock:

User avatar
And No Coffee Table
Posts: 3052
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:57 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby And No Coffee Table » Sun Apr 20, 2008 11:56 am

johnfoyle wrote:Still no joy in finding this. Since Elvis first sang this song on a Irish radio show in June 1987 the image almost certainly comes from the British General Election campaign of May'87.


Elvis first sang "Tramp the Dirt Down" in 1987, but he first sang "Betrayal" in 1985. Granted, "Betrayal" doesn't include the reference to "kissing a child," but it does have the line "when you held the lovely face in your hand," which roughly matches "that young child's face in her hands she grips" in "Tramp the Dirt Down" — and seems to be describing the same photo.

User avatar
pophead2k
Posts: 2403
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2003 3:49 pm
Location: Bull City y'all

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby pophead2k » Sun Apr 20, 2008 1:23 pm

Are we sure there even was a photograph? Perhaps Elvis was just using poetic license and also using the typical imagery one associates with the campaigning politician.

User avatar
wardo68
Posts: 813
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2004 10:21 am
Location: southwest of Boston
Contact:

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby wardo68 » Sun Apr 20, 2008 1:41 pm

pophead2k wrote:Are we sure there even was a photograph? Perhaps Elvis was just using poetic license and also using the typical imagery one associates with the campaigning politician.


I'm inclined to agree with that. EC has never let the truth get in the way of a good story (my favorite being how in '82 he described the house where he wrote "Man Out Of Time" as reminding him of the Profumo scandal, and 20 years later insisting that the scandal had indeed taken place at the house).

Still the image in "Tramp The Dirt Down" is a believable one. Maybe he saw it on the telly.

johnfoyle
Posts: 14606
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Apr 20, 2008 5:56 pm

I still think there was a particular Thatcher/child photo ; I have the haziest of memories of seeing it. Thanks , 'table, for that reminder of 'Betrayal'; I'm inclined to agree with you so that brings the area of search to 1984/85.

A quick , late night look brings up this Jan.'85 image , which isn't what I'm looking for but will do for the moment!

Image

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8856
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Mon Apr 21, 2008 5:42 pm

Maybe that's the closest we'll get! Not sure the lyrics would have been quite as effective, though, perhaps more on the them of heartless laboratory testing. I too think there must be a real image that sparked the song.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

johnfoyle
Posts: 14606
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Feb 12, 2013 3:40 pm

A Spanish Facebook page in tribute to Thatcher (beyond bizarre - it might be a parody) has this. Elvis has said no one image inspired the 'child' lines in Tramp The Dirt Down. Something like this would surely have been food for thought.

Image


Doing a Google Image search, these are new since the last time I checked this out in 2008 -


Image
Margaret Thatcher, then Education Secretary, meets children modelling clay at Gospel Oak primary school in 1970 Photo: Bob Hope.



Image
Margaret Thatcher gets a kiss at the Nation's Bravest Children's Awards, 18th December 1980.


Image
Baroness Thatcher meets Jonathan Weaver, a pupil at Whitefield School

History History
Posts: 209
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 4:21 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby History History » Tue Feb 12, 2013 4:56 pm

johnfoyle wrote:I still think there was a particular Thatcher/child photo ; I have the haziest of memories of seeing it. Thanks , 'table, for that reminder of 'Betrayal'; I'm inclined to agree with you so that brings the area of search to 1984/85.

A quick , late night look brings up this Jan.'85 image , which isn't what I'm looking for but will do for the moment!

Image


Surely, this inspired Monkey To Man :lol:

User avatar
Top balcony
Posts: 680
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 5:48 pm
Location: Liverpool

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Top balcony » Tue Feb 12, 2013 5:42 pm

Never mind the monkey...

looking at the humans left and right it's certainly "Two Little Hitlers"

Colin Top Balcony

johnfoyle
Posts: 14606
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby johnfoyle » Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:00 am


User avatar
Jeremy Dylan
Posts: 934
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 6:39 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia
Contact:

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Jeremy Dylan » Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:08 am

Should we be starting a campaign to get the song to number one?

User avatar
the_roofdog
Posts: 136
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 3:37 am
Location: London

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby the_roofdog » Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:13 am

I think Elvis owes us a drink about now.

Judge Holden
Posts: 36
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 6:13 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Judge Holden » Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:16 am

And now she's dead. Would not be surprised if Elvis gets some attention over the next few days.

Mikeh
Posts: 340
Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2005 3:21 am
Location: Bradford, UK

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Mikeh » Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:57 am

In the words of another Elvis/Ross Macmanus-related song - AT LAST

User avatar
Man out of Time
Posts: 1327
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:15 am
Location: just off the coast of Europe
Contact:

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Man out of Time » Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:26 am

Judge Holden wrote:Would not be surprised if Elvis gets some attention over the next few days.


There's a good chance. The phrase "Tramp the Dirt Down" seems to have some currency:

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/politics/anger-at-george-galloways-tramp-the-dirt-down-tweet-after-margaret-thatchers-death-8564876.html

MOOT

User avatar
the_roofdog
Posts: 136
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 3:37 am
Location: London

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby the_roofdog » Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:36 am

And the Daily Mail's deputy political editor, Tim Shipman, replied: "What a stunningly unpleasant tweet."


I assume he hasn't seen any of the rest of Twitter today then...

User avatar
John
Posts: 771
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2003 5:52 am
Location: North of England

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby John » Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:44 am

They say that Maggie will have a funeral similar to Diana's. Well, Elton sang that song at Diana's so maybe Elvis could sing his little ditty at Maggie's?

User avatar
Jack of All Parades
Posts: 5714
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2009 11:31 am
Location: Where I wish to be

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Jack of All Parades » Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:26 pm

He is getting pride of place within this MSN article:

http://movies.msn.com/movies/article.aspx?news=800936
"....there's a merry song that starts in 'I' and ends in 'You', as many famous pop songs do....'

Ulster Boy
Posts: 261
Joined: Mon Sep 18, 2006 3:27 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Ulster Boy » Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:33 pm

Mikeh wrote:In the words of another Elvis/Ross Macmanus-related song - AT LAST


Why - did you think she was immortal? As I posted on the other thread, Costello has on occasion been distinctly uncomfortable about this song. Its of its time. Let it stay there.

redlandmark
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 4:08 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby redlandmark » Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:12 pm

Ulster Boy wrote:
Mikeh wrote:In the words of another Elvis/Ross Macmanus-related song - AT LAST


Why - did you think she was immortal? As I posted on the other thread, Costello has on occasion been distinctly uncomfortable about this song. Its of its time. Let it stay there.


Hmmm, Costello didn't sound very uncomfortable singing it when I saw it performed in Birmingham, May last year.
Events of today aside, I'd say this song's time could have come again.

Poor Deportee
Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 7:30 pm
Location: Chocolate Town

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Poor Deportee » Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:24 pm

I'm seeing a flurry of references to this song on Facebook and (I gather) Twitter. Dan Savage himself tweeted it. Nice little groundswell of recognition for our lad - a perverse side-effect of Thatcher's demise.

Listening to the song a while ago, I was struck by how it's simultaneously 'of its time' in the sense of being a spasm of protest to current events, but also in a way the eulogy for an entire era. Listened to at 25 years' remove, what the song really amounts to is a heartbreaking lament for the loss of a certain approach to society and politics - the unrecoverable destruction of the 'postwar consensus' around redistribution, full employment, and a general if imperfect commitment to mutual solidarity, to be replaced by the far cruder ethos of greed and crass self-interest that has yielded skyrocketing inequality and the evaporating middle class. It's easy to read the song as a personal attack on Thatcher, but once you see that the song is really using her as the symbol of something much more profound, it acquires a more enduring power - in a way, one of his most effective moments.
When man has destroyed what he thinks he owns
I hope no living thing cries over his bones

Ulster Boy
Posts: 261
Joined: Mon Sep 18, 2006 3:27 pm

Re: 'a newspaper picture..A woman was kissing a child'

Postby Ulster Boy » Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:34 pm

redlandmark wrote:
Ulster Boy wrote:
Mikeh wrote:In the words of another Elvis/Ross Macmanus-related song - AT LAST


Why - did you think she was immortal? As I posted on the other thread, Costello has on occasion been distinctly uncomfortable about this song. Its of its time. Let it stay there.


Hmmm, Costello didn't sound very uncomfortable singing it when I saw it performed in Birmingham, May last year.
Events of today aside, I'd say this song's time could have come again.


What I posted on the other thread is worth repeating: I was at the Royal Albert Hall gig in April 1999 when he got a lengthy heckle for NOT doing it; and I recall an interview around that time with Johnny Vaughan (who despite being a self-professed "fan" re-titled it "Tramp down the dirt") in which EC was distinctly uncormfortable about it.

If I can be bothered, I'll dig out the Vaughan interview and post it on Youtube.


Return to “Elvis Costello General Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 53 guests