Car Jamming

Album: Combat Rock (1982)

Songfacts®:

  • Car Jamming was first recorded at Marcus Music studios in April 1981, in the same sessions that resulted in fellow album track Sean Flynn and non-album single "This Is Radio Clash."
  • The song features Motown-inspired drums from Topper Headon, and half-rapped lyrics from Joe Strummer in a style started on 1980 single "The Magnificent Seven." It also features Mick Jones' then-girlfriend Ellen Foley on backing vocals - you can hear her on Meat Loaf's "Paradise By the Dashboard Light."
  • The lyrics include a reference to "a shyboy from Missouri, boots blown off in a '60s war," which could have been inspired by Vietnam veteran Larry McIntyre, whom The Clash played a benefit concert for in Cleveland in February 1979.
  • The song entered The Clash's live set in the Down the Casbah club tour in May 1982, and stayed there for the rest of the year but was not played much more beyond that.

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