1981 revisited

You don’t want to get too cute with historical parallels – the differences are usually more important than the similarities – but in 1981 we had high unemployment, civil unrest, a Tory government and a royal wedding, all of which seem to be on the cards for the 30th anniversary next year. This was the most popular single in Britain on the day Charles and Diana tied the knot.

This 2002 piece by Alexis Petridis is pretty much the definitive account of what the Specials’ Jerry Dammers, in a moment of high emotion, called “the greatest record that’s ever been made in the history of anything”. He wasn’t exaggerating that much.