On 11 February 2019 I set myself the challenge of reading 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery (ed.) and following the book’s advice to the letter. I’ve previously read 1001 Films… and started 1001 Albums… but felt 1001 Songs… would be a sensible place to start for what I have in mind here.
My challenge is to read about one song per day and listen to it (YouTube and Spotify, I need you tonight!) before sharing my own thoughts. Some songs I will love, others I’ll hate, and I’m sure there will be those that leave me perplexed but listen to them I shall.
I’ll also try, and most likely fail, to pinpoint the best song from the 1001 on offer but I’m nothing if not foolhardy. Instead of one song, I’m predicting I’ll have about 100 favourites by the end and may have to resort to a Top 10 so far to maintain any semblance of sanity.
So long as I post every day (including Christmas) then this challenge should come to an end on Wednesday 8 November 2021. Staying with the Barney Stinson theme I am hoping that the whole experience will prove to be… legendary!
Amy Winehouse – Fuck Me Pumps (2003)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ” Fuck Me Pumps” is a song by English singer and songwriter Amy Winehouse from her debut studio album, (2003). Written by Winehouse and Salaam Remi, the song was released in the United Kingdom as the album’s fourth and final single on 23 August 2004 under the title ” Pumps”-with ” Help Yourself” as its coupling track-reaching number 65 on the UK Singles Chart.
Welcome to 2003, dear reader. To begin a new year we are leaving Sweden and returning to the UK and to London. Amy Winehouse began her career in 2002 and was known for soul, R&B and jazz. When we join Winehouse in 2003 it is with the release of her debut album, Frank, and from there 1001 Songs have gone with the fourth and final single, Fuck Me Pumps, released as Pumps. I wonder why?
Written primarily by Salaam Remi with additional tweaks by Winehouse, Fuck Me Pumps is a humorous and satirical observation of young women who have dreams of fame, money and power, foregoing the chance of meeting the average guy and establishing something long-term, in exchange for the chance of maybe being a footballer’s wife or getting the attention of some other guy with pockets bulging with cash. The song observes the effort these women have to put into their own appearance to stand out from the crowd and how by as early as thirty they are losing their magic and having to compete with those just a few years younger. Winehouse’s narrator is offering a cautionary tale to these women to make changes before it is too late.
I am familiar with Amy Winehouse and her successful but, sadly, short career, but I don’t recall coming across Fuck Me Pumps before. The song paints an unflattering image of proverbial gold diggers but rather than just a side swipe, it tries to help those women that fall into this category. The women described here are at the mercy of their appearance and are sympathetic, given this world of vanity in which we inhabit that puts ludicrous pressure on women to look a particular way. Fuck Me Pumps was a good demonstration of Winehouse’s unquestionable talent and many glory years still lay ahead of her.
Favourite songs so far: