"... and then see if I give a stinking shit"
February 1, 2019 1:17 AM   Subscribe

10 Commandments. Saffiyah Khan is the young woman who faced down English Defence League supporters when they surrounded a Muslim woman in Birmingham a couple of years ago. Photos of her smiling defiance and Specials T-shirt went viral. The band sent her tickets to an upcoming show and offered her the chance to contribute to their new album. The resulting track is out now, and it's great - a heavy dub with Saffiyah chanting over the top. The song is her reply to Prince Buster's notoriously misogynistic 10 Commandments of Man.

Back in 1982, The Specials - then working as The Special AKA - recorded another track with a guest female vocalist. Rhoda Dakar's The Boiler is a brilliant, but very harrowing, depiction of a rape, told from the raped woman's point of view, so be aware of that before you click. There's nothing remotely gratuitous about the track, however.
posted by Paul Slade (29 comments total) 52 users marked this as a favorite
 
The original story is making me teary
Thanks for sharing this. Good reminder that not everyone is an asshole these days.

(I love that even the former leader of EDL realized how idiotic it made his side look. Hahahaaa. Lordy these dumb fcks.)
posted by sio42 at 2:47 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


Love The Specials. Love Blue Beat.
posted by unliteral at 2:49 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


[this is good]
posted by prismatic7 at 3:16 AM on February 1 [3 favorites]


Sadly, the video has a region block on it at the moment.
posted by seanmpuckett at 4:03 AM on February 1 [4 favorites]


Does this one work for you?
posted by EndsOfInvention at 4:05 AM on February 1 [15 favorites]


There was also an answer record to Prince Buster's song by 'Princess Buster' back in 1967: Ten Commandments From Woman to Man.
posted by misteraitch at 5:02 AM on February 1 [3 favorites]


I'd never heard of Princess Buster's reply, misteraitch, so thanks for pointing it out. I think you've got the wrong link there, though. Try this one instead.
posted by Paul Slade at 5:44 AM on February 1 [3 favorites]


Oops: thanks Paul, and thanks too for the post!
posted by misteraitch at 5:59 AM on February 1


Very cool. It reminds me of Your Revolution by Sarah Jones.
posted by demiurge at 6:18 AM on February 1


In the interviews, she comes across as a really interesting and thoughtful person. I'm glad she is getting recognition.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:26 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


"The Boiler" came up on one of my Spotify Discover Weekly playlists a while ago. I'm glad I knew what it was, so I could skip to the next song before it reached its conclusion.
posted by pxe2000 at 6:42 AM on February 1


This is fantastic.
posted by togdon at 7:58 AM on February 1


I wonder why the EDL lout Ian Crossland referred to Saffiyah Khan as a witch?
posted by heatherlogan at 8:01 AM on February 1


This is really goddamn good.

The Specials are too great to make a movie about. You stay away from them!
posted by East14thTaco at 8:22 AM on February 1


Is this the song? (The links in the OP are not available in my country/region.)
posted by eviemath at 8:53 AM on February 1


That's the one. Sorry about the misdirection earlier - I hadn't realised my own link was blocked in some parts of the world.
posted by Paul Slade at 9:15 AM on February 1


Wow thank you for the update! Ngl i totally had a crush on her when this story broke last year. She's still cute.
posted by FirstMateKate at 9:51 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


My college radio station director scolded me when I played The Boiler for the fourth week in a row.

I just thought it needed to be heard. Some listeners seemed to disagree.
posted by donpardo at 10:21 AM on February 1


I wonder why the EDL lout Ian Crossland referred to Saffiyah Khan as a witch?

Transatlantic Trump effect.
posted by notreally at 10:41 AM on February 1


I'm with you, donpardo. It's a measure of what was possible in political pop back in 1982 Britain that this track reached number 35 in the UK charts and remained in the Top 50 for five weeks - and this despite a Radio 1 edict banning it from airplay on the station. Here's a clip I've just found of Dakar performing it on TV.
posted by Paul Slade at 10:43 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


Fantastic. I have no idea what a brummy is, but apart from that, uplifting and inspiring person!
posted by greenhornet at 11:47 AM on February 1


I wonder why the EDL lout Ian Crossland referred to Saffiyah Khan as a witch?

It's a word misogynists traditionally apply to any powerful woman.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 12:55 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


This track came up in my Spotify feed last week and I had no idea about the whole story. Thanks for posting this.
posted by JoeZydeco at 2:32 PM on February 1


A Brummy is a person from Birmingham.
posted by heatherlogan at 2:40 PM on February 1


What the utter christ is that 10 commandments song? Apparently, the only Prince Buster release to break the billboard 100 in the US? The one that mentions spousal murder - what the hell people?

And now the Special's track has been taken down off of youtube, but hey, I can still find that Buster track. What the hell people?
posted by es_de_bah at 2:58 PM on February 1


es_de_bah, it's not just location blocked for you, like it was for me? Try the link in my comment above.
posted by eviemath at 7:07 PM on February 1


I'm in London, and both versions of the Khan video are still there on YouTube and work fine for me. Can't speak for the regional issues.
posted by Paul Slade at 12:22 AM on February 2


NordVPN people.
posted by unliteral at 3:16 AM on February 2


Fantastic. I have no idea what a brummy is, but apart from that, uplifting and inspiring person!

A brummie's someone (like me) from Birmingham. Most amusingly found in this foreign troll getting caught out attempting to foment discord:
Birmingham in the UK literally has no go zones now.
Just got to take issue with this point, because it's bullshit. I've lived in Brum, London and Manchester and not one has a "no go" area.
You've lived in Brum, I was kinda talking about Birmingham. Look it up.
23/05/2017, 19:35

posted by ambrosen at 7:01 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


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