Song of the Day on tour: Republica … Ready to Go

For some weeks, Salut! Sunderland‘s music offshoot Salut! Live has been running a Song of the Day feature.

Regular readers will know of the folk and folk-rock passions of M Salut and will therefore be inclined to read no further unless they share them. However, today’s choice – a long way removed from either genre – has impeccable Sunderland AFC credentials. So it gets two platforms today: a slot on each site.

Ready to Go is not just the name of the indispensable SAFC supporters’ forum; it was a very good rock record, easily Republica’s most successful (apologies for not having checked the link between the two). Nothing very heavy, not the Eurotrash heard in every other bar on the Med, not much to do with the industrial cacophony of techno and its cousins, but also not the soulless Corporate Pop favoured by Mr Cowell and his friends.

As I wrote here during the World Cup, when a special re-mix of the record was released, Ready To Go and Republica are inseparable from the recent history of Sunderland.

That piece went on:

Every SAFC fan, and all visiting supporters who made appearances at the Stadium of Light until – what is it? – a couple of years or so ago will know that as the teams take to the pitch, Prokoviev’s Dance of the Knights gave way to Ready to Go, a lightweight but essential and utterly addictive slice of rock.

And a lucky few once saw Saffron and the band performing it live on the pitch, an event that had the edge on Samson’s antics.

According to David Jaymes, the band’s manager, the band still talk about it fondly. “We were just discussing it the other day; I believe a few drinks were consumed during the game!” he told me last year. “It was one of the stand out moments for the band – playing on a football pitch.”

As for Salut! Live, no reader of this site should go anywhere near the Song of the Day series unless he or she likes such artists as the Unthanks, Fairport Convention, Buffy Sainte-Maire, Jackson C Frank, Tom Paxton, Altan, Capercaillie, Paul Brady, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Show of Hands, Sharon Shannon, the Dubliners, Kirsty MacColl, Richard Thompson, Cara Dillon … you get the drift. Oh, and Eric Clapton and Republica.

* You can buy Republica CDs, including Ready To Go,plus any other music mentioned in the series for the usual knockdown Amazon prices at this Salut! Sunderland link.

Colin Randall

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