“Safe European Home” tells the now-famous story of Joe Strummer and Mick Jones’s disappointing trip to Jamaica. Thematically, it echoes one of their best singles, “White Main In Hammersmith Palais,” a stream-of-consciousness Strummer rant set off by a dopey reggae showcase in London: “On stage they ain’t got no roots rock rebel.” Taken together, these two songs set up ideas about cultural imperialism and idolization that the Clash would explore, lyrically and musically, on London Calling, Sandinista!, and Combat Rock.
And since “Safe European Home” ends with the words “Rudie come from Jamaica, ’cause Rudie can’t fail,” I include the stone-cold classic from London Calling.
These also happen to be three of my favorite Clash songs.
Posted by Glenn