28 Oct, 2017 @ 10:23
2 mins read

EXCUSE ME?: Spanish radio hasn’t quite mastered the bleeping technique

bad coffee
Giles Brown

IT was a usual autumn afternoon and I was casually cruising through the San Pedro tunnel.

OK so I was not actually cruising but stuck in one of the inevitable traffic jams which still take place in that town, even after the years and millions of euros spent on a scheme that was supposed to mean that you could drive from Malaga to Algeciras without stopping.

Obviously, the same planning genius that decided that Spain need a roundabout every 500 metres or so, even though no one has the slightest idea how to drive around them, decided that you only need a single access lane of about 50 metres, and so consequently the traffic always gets held up.

These things are, of course, relative. When I first lived here in the 80s – a period now referred to by historians and archaeologists as ‘Jurassic Marbella’ – a trip to Malaga airport, which entailed driving along the old N-340, ‘the most dangerous road in Europe’, through Marbella, Fuengirola, Benalmadena and Torremolinos – took up at least half the day, and you prepared accordingly.

Plenty of water, Kendal mint cake, army surplus rations, bedding, that sort of thing.


TOVE LO: Disco Tits

You will also note that in the 80s and 90s Malaga was bandit country, not the smart, hip cultural destination that it is now, and we never went there.

Friends of mine once organised a Genesis concert at Malaga’s La Rosaleda stadium and afterwards decided to stay overnight in a motorhome/office parked inside the ground. Rumour quickly got around Malaga’s criminal gangs that all the takings from the concert were inside the motorhome (they weren’t) and my friends spent one of the longest nights of their lives, listening to the sounds of various gang members trying to get into the stadium, like an Andaluz version of ‘Assault on Precinct 13’.

But back to sitting in traffic in San P. I decided to flick on the radio and catch some light afternoon radio.

After all it was 3pm, so I thought I’d probably hum along to a little Clapton or Fleetwood Mac.

What I got made me drop my con gas –  “I’m sweatin’ from head to toe, I’m wet through all my clothes, I’m fully charged, nipples are hard, Ready to go”. The song ‘Disco Tits’ by Swedish singer Tove Lo, blasted out from the radio, including the line “I’m high as F**k”.

Now with my lifestyle I’m hardly going to turn into Marbella’s version of Mary Whitehouse, and there is a time and a place for sweaty, sweary, sex-mad Swedish singers (and I fervently wish it was my place, anytime).

But this was going out at school run time.

It’s not the first time that Spanish stations have played songs that aren’t exactly radio friendly.

I have lost count the number of times that I’ve heard “F**K” on the airwaves from everything from James Blunt to Katy Perry to Enrique Iglesias to The Weeknd and practically every rap artist. But my own favourite was CeeLo Green, whose hit song “F**K You” was once played at under-fives end-of-term show!

If the next generation are going to learn their English from social media, look out for eight-year-old Andaluz kids greeting you with “Yo! Muthaf****”!

Giles Brown

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