serious

I am continually amazed by the good taste of Guardian readers.

I've mentioned before that every Friday there's a column where people write in their favourite songs on a nominated theme. This week it's Fire, and so the resulting lists obviously starts with The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown. It then continues with Baby's On Fire, Great Balls of Fire, Firestarter, Babylon's Burning, Burn Hollywood Burn (the Public Enemy song, before anyone thinks it's a misnaming), Kerosene, Burning Down The House and then a couple at the end that I'm less keen on.

Recorded as riots swept Britain in 1979, the Ruts' unbearably tense Babylon's Burning gleefully anticipates the fiery demise of western civilisation. It's the best song the Clash never recorded. A decade later, Public Enemy delivered an incendiary rant against Hollywood for its portrayal of black people: "butlers and maids, slaves and hos". Steve Albini's Big Black, meanwhile, recommended torching smalltown America simply to alleviate the boredom of living there. Kerosene's metallic groove rumbles and clanks for three minutes before erupting into a pyromaniac's glorious manifesto.

Lyskey continues elsewhere :

Thanks to the people who introduced me to Sonny's Burning by the Birthday Party, a song which I have been playing all week even though I couldn't squeeze it onto the list.

As Sara pointed out earlier, next week's question is an interesting one: Advice songs. Singers are always sharing their alleged wisdom: don't give up, fight for your rights, etc. Any musical advice welcome, from the sensible to the deeply unwise. Think of it as Chicken Soup for the iPod.

I can't help thinking "Set me on fire!" and "There is nothing better in life than writing on the sole of your slipper with a biro on a Saturday night instead of going to the pub."

Any more ideas?

{Later - "Touch me, I'm sick" (Mudhoney), "Next time we have sex just pretend that I'm Ed Meese" and "It's OK to run out of butter in Zambia - just smear squashed caterpillars on your toast" (Lard)]
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"The funny thing about regret is, it's better to regret something y'have done, than to regret something y'haven't done."
(though that bit's not really sung)

Also Pulp: "Help the aged, coz one day you'll be older too"
Firewater - "The Man on the Burning Tightrope"
Siouxsie & the Banshees - "Burn Up"
Deep fat frier!

Also Build a Fire by the KLF if you want something gentler (which I'm sure you don't)

And Morphine's Rope on Fire which is my favorite song ever ever, although that may be stretching a point.
Not exactly advise but

"you're breaking my heart
You've Torn it apart
So fuck you..."

*If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with"? I always thought that was curious..
Digging for Fire

Any song that rhymes it with "desire" and "higher". Bonus points for "pyre".
I read "Chicken Soup for the iPod" as "Chicken Soup for the Road", which sounds like a Drive-By Truckers track.
Which leads nicely to my favourite advice song, 'Outfit':
Have fun and steer clear of the needle
Call home on your sister's birthday
Words I intend to say to Daniel in a few years.
Advice (and Fire)
"don't fall in love with me yet" (Mag.Fields)
"Kill your Television"
"Don't cry for me Argentina"
"Take the skinheads bowling"
"Trouble in River City"
"You can leave your hat on"
"sever flesh and bone" (NIN)
"Take a chance on me"

There was a David Bowie song on the Cat People soundtrack about putting out fires with gasoline.







Re: Advice (and Fire)
I generally cite fighting fire with petrol as being a bad idea, but now you mention it I think it has its points.

Sadly, I think they didn't end up going with any of my advice. Ungrateful bastards.