What links the letters “E, E, G, E, D, C, B” to Cameron Jerome?
No, they’re not his GCSE results.
Nor an anagram (unless you can find one?).
They’re the opening notes of Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes – the tune that we sing to show our appreciation of our current number 10.
That is, unless you’re the bloke who sits behind me in the Barclay who for some reason holds that penultimate C note rather than dropping pitch to the last B.
The musical maverick.
If he went on The X Factor, Louis Walsh may well commend him for ‘making the song his own’.
But I’m not Louis Walsh and it really bugs me.
In the same way it bugged me when people used Houghton instead of Hughton or even worse, when the guy at the office used to call my favourite ever player “Darren Huckerberry”.
With all of these things, it doesn’t seem unreasonable to expect people to get it right – especially in the case of a song that is as vocally undemanding as simply singing ‘ooooooh Cameron Jeroooo-ome’ (with the change to B after the hyphen of course).
I’m not a natural musician or blessed with a great singing voice but I do my bit on the terraces, which is odd in some regards.
Considering I’ve never felt the remotest urge to serenade my wife (or any of my previous girlfriends for that matter), it’s strange that I’m so quick to turn to the medium of song to show my love and appreciation for a variety of men in shorts.
But when I was a kid, kicking a ball about in the garden, I used to pretend I was playing for City and my imaginary Carrow Road would sing out my name.
A bit like Grant Holt, my mono-syllabic moniker didn’t exactly lend itself to many of the traditional terrace chants but unlike Holty, neither did my fictitious footballing exploits.
“He scored nineteen goals in the back garden against an imaginary Liverpool side, Steve Cook, Steve Cook” really doesn’t have the same ring to it.
Growing up, I always imagined what it must feel like to be a fans’ favourite and hear the crowd show its appreciation. Because whilst football is a team game, it’s made up of individual contributions and amidst all the ‘kicking it off and throwing it in’, we like to recognise and acknowledge those individual efforts.
Like when the keeper denies a one on one with a smothering block.
“Ruddy, Ruddy, Ruddy”!
Or when the full-back sends both the ball and their winger into touch with a perfectly timed tackle.
“Ivo, Ivo, Ivo”!
But it’s not quite that simple. After all, we sing for Ruddy but not for McGovern. We sing for Pinto but we didn’t for Olsson – or at least I didn’t.
The Graham Dorrans, Steven Naismiths and Ryan Bennetts of this world don’t get their names sung but why is that? (no, I don’t accept that it is simply “because they’re rubbish”)
My theory is that you have to tick at least two of the following boxes:
a) Be good
b) Show some love
c) Be different
d) Score against Ipswich
Let me explain my thinking.
Both Pinto and Olsson are good full-backs, the difference being that one of them engages on social media and gave us his #PitchWarYellowArmy. The other gave us the impression he wanted to leave and, of course, subsequently did.
Hucks (or “Huckerberry”) was good – really good in fact, and he told his agent where to go and signed for us permanently because he had grown to love the club. He became a legend and was rewarded with TWO songs that still get the occasional airing.
By definition, being ‘different’ covers a multitude of things, all of which allow us to get creative in our terrace chants.
It might boil down to nationality, if for example you’re a ‘yella who eats paella’ or someone who goes ‘Moroccan all over the world’. It might be down to or rather ‘despite your lack of height’ or maybe because you have a twin brother and it’s hard to tell ‘which one’s which’.
Score against Ipswich and that used to be a sure fire way of being immortalised in song – right up until the point that ‘half of f***ing Norwich’ did it. But Leon McKenzie, Malky MacKay, Super Messrs Johnson, Howson and Holt all have songs dedicated to them for sticking it to our near neighbours.
On the flip side, Lewis Grabban scored against Ipswich twice but we didn’t sing about him.
There’s possibly one other criteria that can lead you to becoming a hit on the terraces;
e) It’s just makes us smile.
Examples of this are ‘one F in Fleming, there’s only one F in Fleming’ and to the same tune ‘One Juan Velasco, there’s only one Juan Velasco’.
Or who can forget ‘he’s fat, he’s round, he’s worth two millions pounds, Robert Fleck, Robert Fleck’
Regrettably, one of my favourite terrace songs was as short-lived as the City career of the man who inspired it – the one and only Fernando Derveld and his Abba themed tune.
“There was something in the air that night; he’s Dutch; he’s shite, Fernando”
So ‘Let’s be ‘aving you’ good people of MFW – what are your favourite songs that have graced Carrow Road to acknowledge one of our boys in yellow?
six foot two, eyes of blue, Duncan Forbes is after you!
Has anyone seen Fernando Develd’s paintings on his Wikipedia page??
As far as favourite songs go does it get any better than the one about Michael Turner formerly not being very good before not becoming so bad after all (in not so many words)?
martin penney says
Ha! Good one Steve.
I think I put most of my favourites in an article a while back but you’ve jogged my memory enough to come up with a couple more.
“He’s got a pine….apple on his head”. Poor old Jason Lee but the evidence was there for all to see. Not one of ours but great fun anyway – even if Jason appeared to dislike it intensely. Which is why we sang it again, of course.
The Spurs sing: “He’ll shoot, he’ll score, he’ll eat your Labrador, player X, player X”. I wonder who?
The 12 Huckerbys of Christmas forever lives on in my memory and as you say, very occasionally gets dusted off.
A good read!
nana na na n hey hey kenny foggo
Laurence G says
For me the ultimate was always for Paul McVeigh, purely because through the song he was renamed on various forums to WLY. And whenever I am in a club playing it on a cheesy night out I always sing the City lyrics.
One other one to throw in was for a certain Marc Libra – “Viva Marc Libra” anyone?
Don Harold says
Burnley fans singing to Paul McVeigh ‘you’re supposed to be a gnome’
McKenzie….scored against the scum then he scored another one.
One of my favourite times was when we went to Maine Road in the FA Cup shortly after John Bond had left us for them. They beat us 6 something and the BBC tried to a pitch side post match interview with JB. They had to abort the interview as the 3000 Norwich fans who had been kept in after the game sang some very naughty things about him.
Gary Wenn says
Me and my son went to Barnsley away just before Christmas and we travelled over from Macclesfield. A few beers were consumed on the train there and back and we were stood on the platform at Stockport station late in the evening singing the Christmas Huckerby song. An announcement came over the tannoy “the next train at platform 2 is for Stoke on Trent and songs about Darren Huckerby are banned on platform 2”. I cried with laughter
Roger Starling says
A song for John Manning to the tune of Manfreds Mighty Quinn. ….you’ve seen nothing like John Manning.
Mike C says
Some good memories there, but on the annoying side, those of our own who sing ‘scrummage’
Stewart Lewis says
Suencfc #1, Sixtiebarclayboy #4, Roger #8: Good to know there are City fans of my vintage on here!
“We love you, Paul McVeigh…” is surely one of the best in its own right. Can remember a great rendering in the 2002 playoff semi-final with Wolves.
Most annoying thing I find Mike is that my kids, now in their twenties, finish on the ball city while I’m still steadying on.
Gary Gowers says
Chris (11) – I fear we’ve been here before but agree 100%. The way it descends into hyper-speed while us oldies are ‘steadying on’ has been a source or irritation for many years!
Stewart Lewis says
I’m starting to consider candidates for MyFootballWriter Paragraph of the Year.
The one in Steve’s article beginning “Considering I’ve never felt the remotest urge…” is a definite contender.
Give us an N… , give us an O…, give us an R…, give us a W (wubble you!)…. etc
When was the last time we heard that?! One for the 80’s I suspect but seems to have died a death.
Mick Dennis says
Great stuff. I think having a two-syllable first name is important. Ru-el, Iw-an, Iv-o!
When I was a newspaper executive, back in the days when men wore woad, I commissioned a piece about the songs which football fans purloin for chants.
Hence I can report that, “Oh Teddy, Teddy … (etc)” is sung to the tune of that 1972 Chicory Tip classic: “Son Of My Father”.
Gary Field says
Chris (11) and Gary (12) Fair play to the Club, the big screen tries to slowdown the lyrics, but still fans sing at their speed!
Gary and Gary. Agreed. Could someone orchestrate a proper rendition of the old anthem? It used to make the hairs stand up on my neck when sung with feeling. Nowadays it’s sounds like a dirge and it tapers out to a grunt at the end.
I remember the ones that could go on and on if City were having a good day – eg: We’ve got Kenny, Kenny, Kenny, Kenny Foggo on the win, on the wing, Kenny, Kenny Foggo, etc
Or to the tune of Guantanamera…One Martin Peters, there’s only one Martin Peters etc. That one reached a good crescendo before rolling on to be repeated.
Vintage, slow, deliberate OTBC has to be the song that brings tears to the eyes. This modern day rush to get it done asap sees us oldies still in the warm up. And I never sing “Kick IT off! Throw IT in” It’s “Kick Off, throw in!!” Oh the pedantry of it all. Forever OTBC!!!!!!!!
Gary Gowers says
Chris (17), JohnnyP (19), Gaz (16) – Give this a listen (at 17:00)… does indeed bring a tear to the eye.
Gary Gowers says
…. and at 17:20 the most Norwich City corner you’ll ever see!
For me it has to be the scarf song.
Gary Gowers says
CA17ARY (22)… Alas the Premier League have sniffed at the YouTube video! Am assuming it’s “we’ve come for our scarves” classic?
Expect the PL’s take was ‘how dare they mock the mighty Man U’.