Hello again Mark Godfrey here, your host of Vincerà! – the story of Italia ’90 podcast. After our final epic installment which concluded the series you probably didn’t expect to hear from us again. Well here we are, or a least here I am with the first of what may or not be occasional bonus follow-up episodes where we’ll expand further on Italia ’90 stories or look to tie up a few loose ends we didn’t get round to in the original series. This episode is actually the brainchild of Webbie – the chief of the brilliant Football and Music website who was a guest on Vincerà back in episode 14. Webbie kindly asked me if I’d like to chat with the man whose idea it was to marry England’s 1990 World Cup campaign with the music of one of the most respected indie bands of the era. The result of that lightning bolt of inspiration of course, was World In Motion.
MARK: On behalf of myself (Vincera90) and Webbie (Football and Music) I’d like to welcome David Bloomfield to the podcast. In case you weren’t already aware, David was the F.A’s press officer at the time of Italia ’90 and as well as having to deal with the demands of the bloodthirsty English media on the sometimes tetchy Bobby Robson and his players during the World Cup – he was also responsible for putting the wheels in motion on World In Motion: New Order’s iconic World Cup song. David. How are you ?
DAVID: Yeah very well thanks. And you ?
MARK: Not too bad under the testing circumstances we all find ourselves in… So David you’ve got a strong football background, your Dad was a former player with Arsenal and then went on to become the manager at Leyton Orient. Did this background influence you and sort of, push you on to becoming involved as the press officer at the F.A ?
DAVID: I suppose the short answer is yes… when I was born there’s a photograph of me I think at 2 years old – 2 days old in the London Evening Standard, I’m in the arms of my Mother and it said; ‘Arsenal’s inside forward has a son’ I mean hardly any reference to my Mother and that was on the back pages the sports pages of the Standard so I’ve been it’s a natural habitat for me from day 1.
I suppose I was a bit too young to see my Dad play, except for a bit later on in his career but I’d already played we always played football at school, we always talked about it. It was always the subject that we spoke about at home and it was my Dad’s job and it was just part and parcel of my brother’s life and mine. When my Dad got transferred in the latter part of his career he played for Plymouth, we would move down there and we’d all have new school’s, so moving from one school to another became a norm really.
MARK: Well your Dad was mentioned in a Fall song; ‘Enigrammatic Dream’ – or at least it’s thought he was because there’s some possible confusion on the part of frontman Mark E. Smith.
The lyric we are referring to says that “Jimmy Bloomfield of Blackpool…” when your Father never played for them, but of course there was Jimmy Armfield who did famously play for Blackpool – who play at Bloomfield Road. So was that confusion ever cleared up ?
DAVID: I think I cleared it up because there’s a few versions… Mark E. Smith, of course you won’t be able to ask him what actually was going on, but there is a version where he talks about the dead Jimmy Bloomfield as being revived to host this jousting encounter in Blackpool, now I looked up at the date of that live recording and my Dad died in ’83… at that time Jimmy Armfield was alive and kicking, so at that moment he must have known who he was referring to, but I think perhaps when it was written initially he might have got confused between Jimmy Bloomfield and Jimmy Armfield with Blackpool playing at Bloomfield Road, that’s perfectly possible. When Jimmy Armfield actually did die about a year ago I did get some text messages from people commiserating me on my loss of my Father. There’s always a little bit of confusion during their career with their names and they actually knew each other and played for England under-23’s together so anybody that has that confusion it’s quite normal. But I think that Mark eventually, at least in the latter, live version of that, does know what he’s talking about.
MARK: Who were the bands that you were listening to and went to watch in your youth ?
DAVID: The first gig I ever saw was David Bowie in his Ziggy Stardust mode, not the famous gig when he retired that character but a few gigs beforehand so that certainly set a very high benchmark for what I was looking for. I think Bowie, Roxy (Music), Velvet Underground, The Doors, they were probably my influential bands really that I like and still listen to. Suede probably of the newer bands, although they’ve been around quite a while. They were a band I think were pretty good. Flaming Lips I like and they are turning out some good stuff I think.