Socialism In An Age Of Waiting links to a story about the legend of “Midgetville” today. It opens by saying that the likeliest candidate is a place called Jefferson Township. I couldn’t concentrate on the rest because all I could think of was a bunch superannuated hippies singing:
“Don’t you remem-ber?
We built this city,
We built this city,
We built this city for lit-tle folks.”
Thought they changed their name to Jefferson Outhouse?
Thanks, Damian. Now I can’t get that damned song out of my head.
it’s in my head too – but who was it who did the cover version “we built this city on reggae music?”
Sorry about the earworm folks [you follow that link to the Wikipedia definition at the risk of acquiring further infestations]. Displace it with this:
“It’s been a hard day’s night
And I’ve been working like a dog.
It’s been a hard day’s night
I should be sleeping like a log,
But when I get home to you
I find the things that you do
Will make me feel alright.”
What is a mamba in the phrase Marconi plays the mamba.
According to my Chambers Dictionary, a mamba is a (deadly African) snake. Since Marconi is widely credited as the inventor of radio (and the next line is “Listen to the radio”) this could be a reference to the oscillation of radio waves resembling the movement of a snake and having a similarly dangerous potential for social change—or it could just be a preposterous lyric from a crap song.
I’m more inclined to think that the “artists” merely confused “mamba” with “mambo.” What difference, you ask? Well, very little, except that one is a deadly, poisonous snake, while the other is a rather festive Carribean dance. Or music for said festive dance, played on the radio…
He can’t have meant Mambo! Mambo & Mamba sound entirely different. The Mambo wasn’t even invented until 1938 & Marconi was dead by 1937! Perhaps he meant the Samba? The Samba was around in this era.
This lyric drives me mad because even though Marconi develpoed the radio i can’t seem to find anything that suggests he ever broadcast anything on it himself…
Its possible they meant Samba (which originated in Africa – though is mostly credited to Brazil) because as history has it the Italians invaded Ethiopia in 1935 & Marconi made a number of pubic speeches endorsing the unprovoked attack. So perhaps its suppose to illustrate some type of irony between broadcasting their music & invading their country?
Or it could be as literal as it sounds, the black Mamba (as in the african snake) is the most venomous one & is indigenous to Ethiopa. So perhaps it was some type of political comment about him endorsing the invasion of Ethiopia.
It doesn’t matter if it has to do with mambo, samba or snakes, Starship just wanted to have people singing their song all day using this kind of verses.
[There was a comment here from someone linking back to their site that linked to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. I’ve removed it. I’n not having any racist loons here.]
Well, all I can hope is for VH 1 or a talk show make a special about the 80s and ask one of the singers…. what the hell do u mean by Marconi plays the mamba?
Marconi Plays The Mamba simply means songs on the radio are poisoning the youth of the day – that’s what the “establishment” says. The Starship is being cynical… sardoic even.
It’s a good song to sing with a lisp camped-up like a giant QUEEN! OOOOooooh Marconi Plays The Mamba…and boy does he ever!!!!
why does it say: “We built this city for little folks” when its, “We built this city on rock and roll” ???
someone knows what the radiostation says in the song? it come along up to the end twice
maconi play the mamba = my car need plays the mamba, the song is a message from the future. the whole song is about what happened.