Dream of the Water Children: The Black Pacific

“Straight to Hell” – Song that points to the constructed cultural trope of Amerasian children in Vietnam

In 1982, the Clash recorded a song about Amerasian children left in Vietnam.  In 2010, for an album dedicated by top musicians for the reality of children affected by war, Lily Allen released a recording, which I’ve posted here.   Lyrics below the video.

Straight To Hell
(Joe Strummer/Mick Jones)

If you can play the fiddle
How’s about a British jig and reel?
Speaking King’s English in quotation
As railhead towns feel the steel mills rust water froze
In the generation
Clear as winter ice
This is your paradise

There ain’t no need for ya
Go straight to hell boys

Ya wanna join in a chorus
Of the Amerasian blues?
When it’s Christmas out in Ho Chi Minh City
Kiddie say papa papa papa papa-san take me home
See me got photo photo photograph
Of you mamma mamma mamma-san
Of you and mamma mamma mamma-san

Lemme tell ya ’bout your blood, bamboo kid
It ain’t Coca-Cola, it’s rice.

Straight to hell

Oh papa-san
Please take me home
Oh papa-san
Everybody they wanna go home

So mamma-san says
You wanna play mind-crazed banjo
On the druggy-drag ragtime U.S.A.?
In Parkland International
Hah! Junkiedom U.S.A.
Where procaine proves the purest rock man groove and rat poison
The volatile Molatov says –

Heh-heh-heh-heh-heh-heh . . .
Go straight to hell

Can you really cough it up loud and strong?
The immigrants they wanna sing all night long
It could be anywhere
Most likely could be any frontier
Any hemisphere
No man’s land

There ain’t no asylum here
King Solomon he never lived round here

Go straight to hell boys

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