Music Video Of The Day: Bankrobber by The Clash (1980, directed by Don Letts)


My daddy was a bank robber
But he never hurt nobody
He just loved to live that way
And he loved to steal your money
Some is rich, and some is poor
And that’s the way the world is
But I don’t believe in laying back
Sayin’ how bad your luck is
So he came to jazz it up
Never learned to shovel
Break your back to earn our pay
Don’t forget to grovel
My daddy was a bank robber
But he never hurt nobody
He just loved to live that way
And he loved to take your money
He’s gone now

No, the lyrics of Bankrobber are not meant to be autobiographical.  Joe Strummer’s father was a foreign office diplomat and apparently never robbed a bank.  As Mick Jones would later describe it, Bankrobber is meant to be a modern folk song.  Like many The Clash’s best songs, Bankrobber dealt with a working class hero getting back at the establishment.  In this case, he does it through robbing banks.

This video was considered to be controversial enough that it was banned by Top of the Pops.  The two masked robbers were played by two Clash roadies named Johnny Green and Barry Glare.  The bank that they’re robbing was located in Lewisham, South London.

Enjoy!

 

One response to “Music Video Of The Day: Bankrobber by The Clash (1980, directed by Don Letts)

  1. Pingback: Lisa’s Week In Review: 7/8/19 — 7/14/19 | Through the Shattered Lens

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