What is it with this song at the moment? I swear it’s following me around. I was on a red eye flight a week ago and I couldn’t sleep so I watched the fantastic movie Free Fire (a 70’s set Reservoir Dogs style bullet festival). While I was enjoying the jukebox soundtrack and tiny cans of beer up popped Run Through The Jungle. ‘What a tune’ I thought to myself while actors wriggled around in the dirt catching bullet wounds and firing off sharp dialogue.
“Whoa, thought it was a nightmare, lo, it all so true they told me, don’t go walkin’ slow the devil’s on the loose”
12 hours and a connecting flight later and I’m over Hong Kong watching the latest King Kong movie Skull Island and it pops up again. We’ve got a Vietnam War movie and a monster movie mash up on screen. To footage of helicopters strafing a treeline of palms with bullets and fire while fighting a huge gorilla called Kong (let me know if the metaphor is too subtle wont you?) those ominous guitar strings chime in. What a riff, what a groove.
“Thought I heard a rumblin’ callin’ to my name, two hundred million guns are loaded Satan cries, “Take aim”
So I go and do a days work in Vietnam without sleep. The long hot working day comes to an end. I meet up with some colleagues and head out for a drink in Saigon. Here it is again. Run Through The Jungle playing loud and raw in a bar in a city in a country that was at war with the singers home when the record came out 48 years ago.
“Over up on the mountain thunder magic spoke “Let the people know my wisdom fill the land with smoke””
We’re in the shadow of the Hôtel Du Continental in Ho Chin Minh where the western world received the reports and the footage from during the war. Dancing to music made for and about soldiers fighting that war 2 generations later.
Feels a bit odd. What a tune though. What a voice.
On the flight home I settled down to watch Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep give an acting masterclass in The Post. The opening credits? Yep!