Young Stanley

Sing It For Stanley

It’s the weekend after England have made the best start to a World Cup campaign for almost a quarter of a century, despite some alarmingly lacklustre performances. Seems like a good time to write up the interview I did with Jay Cranstoun from Young Stanley just before it all kicked off, especially as there is now no pressure whatsoever in England’s third group game against Sweden. Plus I want to raise readers of this website’s awareness of the best football song in YEARS, especially considering we have at least 30 other supposed “anthems” being dragged up from a frustrating multitude of money grabbing supposed “passionate” artists. This one though is the real McCoy. If only someone would actually bother to play it…

AD: So, how did five builders from Bromley decide they were going to write their own World Cup song?

JC: Well, we were all chatting about the football in the pub and we were saying that there’s three of us who were born in ’66, so we never even got to SEE it. Rod’s been in bands in the past and Mark can play drums, so we decided that we wanted to write a real passionate football song that the fans could really get their teeth into…

AD: …unlike Embrace’s “official” song…

JC: I think Embrace’s song is a really, really good one, but it doesn’t make me think of football at all, and you definitely can’t chant it on the terraces. Our song on the other hand, is so easy to pick up, even for the most tone deaf fan. You can’t get much simpler than “Will it be a 4-4-2 that brings the trophy home to you” can you?

AD: Wasn’t that what the song was originally going to be called, “4-4-2”?

JC: Oh man, yeah, you can imagine our horror when we’d recorded it and called it “4-4-2” and then we watched an England game where Sven started messing about with a 4-5-1 formation instead!

AD: I think it’s a real pity that the FA never picked up on the song…

JC: Oh but they did! They actually wanted to use it as the official song but apparently they just couldn’t get their heads around the fact that it was builders and not musicians who’d done it.

AD: I’d have thought that would’ve made it appeal more!

JC: That’s what we thought as well, but obviously they think different to us. It’s annoying because I don’t think it could have sounded any better if it HAD been musicians who’d done it.

AD: Totally agree. Ah well, this’ll cheer you up a bit – my missus asked me to inform you that you’re “really fit”, apparently…

JC: Who, ME? Well, I can’t see it myself, but tell her thanks for that – it’s really made my day. It might put her off if she sees the video though! It’s amazing – I had no idea I’d be watching BBC London Tonight and the one clip they’d be showing on it would be the one of my arse! My belt acted as a wonderbra there, as we were playing up to the old “builders arse” cliché, but I had no idea it was going to be displayed to the entire nation on primetime television!

AD: Have you had much positive feedback?

JC: Oh it’s ALL been positive, except for some people who don’t believe we’re builders and think this is all just an act. Look, to prove we’re all builders, let me point this out – Paul took three hundred takes just to get his one line in the song right! I think that’s pretty conclusive evidence.

AD: So, if you could meet Sven before the World Cup starts, what piece of advice would you give him?

JC: Take on Rodney (writer and composer of “Sing It For England” as your number two! Honestly, if Rod could manage England as well as he can write songs, we’d win the world cup without any problems whatsoever. He’s just brilliant.

AD: So have you got a final message for the England fans?

JC: Just to get behind the team – Owen Hargreaves included – and we’ll hear you in Germany! COME ON ENGLAND!!!

My sentiments exactly, and hey, it’s nice to have a full week before our next really important game! Anyway in the meantime, GO AND BUY “Sing It For England”!!! It’s the best football anthem since “Three Lions” and deserves to be chanted from the terraces all over Germany by the time the thing’s done and dusted. Who knows – maybe it will be…

Interview: Tone E

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