Saturday, January 18, 2014

Squeeze - "Up The Junction" (forgotten song)

"Up The Junction", from the 1979 LP "Cool For Cats", is probably my favorite Squeeze song, but up until yesterday I had never actually googled the phrase.  I was surprised to learn that "Up The Junction" is a 1963 collection of short stories describing dead-end, working class life in Battersea, where the railway station Clapham Junction is located.  It was also adapted as a play in 1965, as well as a film in 1968.  These would have been well-known cultural references in 1979 in the UK.  Presumably the rather bleak story ("The devil came and took me / from bar to street to bookie") told in the song is taken from the book, but I don't know for sure.

I don't recall Squeeze being famous in the US until a few years later, with songs like "Tempted" and "Black Coffee in Bed", but the compilation LP "Singles -- 45s and Under" was standard issue in every dorm room during my college years.  But somehow I waited until 2014 to learn the full context of this song...

Squeeze - "Up The Junction": official video, Top of the Pops, live version (20xx?), re-recorded 2010 version

Bonus link: 1965 BBC play

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