Kirsty MacColl

So here’s today’s little internet adventure. It started with my friend Chet Hondo’s blog where I caught up with yesterday’s posts and listened to the Pogues’ “If I Should Fall From Grace with God.” That had me wondering whatever happened to Shane MacGowan and his teeth.

So I went to Wikipedia and read up on the dude. Turns out he’s still alive! And possibly has teeth now! I listened to “Fairytale of New York” on YouTube. And I wondered about the “Justice For Kirsty Campaign” mentioned on MacGowan’s page.

Things started clicking. I remember an interview with Morrissey where he talked about his friend who’d died in an accident in Mexico. I guess I’d never connected the woman who sang with The Pogues and The Smiths as the same woman. It is, of course, Kirsty MacColl.

So I headed to Kirsty MacColl’s Wikipedia page and learned all sorts of interesting things. Worst of all is the recounting of the accident that killed her when she was struck by a boat while diving in Mexico. Here is one awful detail:

Cen Yam was found guilty of culpable homicide and was sentenced to 2 years 10 months in prison. However, he was allowed under Mexican law to pay a punitive fine of 1034 pesos (about £61 or US$90) in lieu of the prison sentence.

Horrible. But I also learned that Kirsty penned “They Don’t Know” which I rediscover every once in a while with surprise that Tracey Ullman made records. Ullman released the song in 1983. Here’s her version:

And here’s Kirsty’s awesome original from 1979:

I love internet detours like that. Especially when they lead me to really fine songs.