Written by: David Porter
Bedecked in a black fedora and dark shades, Paddy McAloon, chief songwriter and founder of Prefab Sprout, one of the all-time great British pop bands, a list which includes Aztec Camera, The Smiths and Teenage Fanclub, has sent a missive from his Durham home to exhort America to remain true to its promise to immigrants:
Liberty welcomes everyone
Now she’s blushing in the sun
Don’t reject the stranger, knocking at your door
An orphan child, exiled by war
She may become a doctor
And work among the poor
A scientist who finds a cure….
The immigrant, as you well know, is drawn to freedom’s light
America, do what’s right
It’s of course a perfect Prefab Sprout confection, a mix of major and minor chords and McAloon’s exquisite tenor. The lyrics to “America are reminiscent of the lyrics to the band’s 1991 single, “The Sound of Crying” (found on A Life of Surprises – The Best of Prefab Sprout).
Hang out the flags a new world order’s on the way
Start singing now a song to greet the joyful day
Just when we thought the time was right for celebrating
with music of the spheres
What’s this, another boat of fleeing refugees on a
sea of children’s tears
Once more the sound of crying
Is number one across the earth
Is there an album to follow? It’s unknown, but like every other Prefab Sprout, song it will set you to dreaming – and humming. Do what’s right – don’t resist.