Conservative senator Cory Bernardi’s alternative Hottest 100 list has not struck a chord with some Australian musicians who don’t want to be included in his top tracks.
His call for an alternative countdown comes after Triple J announced its popular annual Hottest 100 would not be played on Australia Day, but on January 27, due to the “increasing debate” and the day’s meaning for indigenous people.
Senator Bernardi’s list, including classic songs by Australian artists such as Men at Work, Cold Chisel, John Farnham, Savage Garden and Yothu Yindi, was created to encourage true blue supporters to vote for their favourite tracks as debate continues over whether to change the date of Australia Day.
“As taxpayer-funded Triple J and their ‘Hottest 100’ abandon our national day for political correctness, we’re inviting you to cast your vote by telling us your favourite 3 tracks from our #AC100 playlist,” the senator’s party posted on its website.
Several prominent Australian musicians have protested against their inclusion in Bernardi’s list including Men At Work frontman Colin Hay, whose song Down Under is first on the list.
Hay said the song’s meaning had been lost on Bernardi.
“When the lyrics were written some 40 years ago, I was worried about people like him, and movements he represents. Turns out I had good reason to be,” Hay told the ABC.
“May I suggest Mr Bernardi, if you haven’t already, dabbling in some light hallucinogens. Wander into a field, and sit in front of a tree, and look at it, really study it, at a molecular level,” he said.
“It may not change your conservative views, but it may make you realise you’re not quite as important as you think you are,” Hay said.
Darren Hayes, lead singer with Savage Garden, has asked the senator several times via Twitter to remove his song, To The Moon And Back, from the list.
“Hi @CoryBernadi and @AuConservatives. I do not want to be associated with you, your party or your views. Remove my music from this stunt or expect contact from my publisher @SonyATV,” Hayes tweeted.
Senator Bernardi responded directly to Hayes on the social media outlet and showed no signs of modifying the list.
“Get over yourself @darrenhayes. Music is for everyone.” Bernardi tweeted.
Jimmy Barnes, who is included on the list as a solo artist and in his band Cold Chisel responded to Bernardi from Japan, where he is on holiday.
“Why would you listen to anything @corybernardi says, especially about music?”
Former Powderfinger frontman Bernard Fanning also weighed into the debate, saying he wanted nothing to do with the Australian Conservative’s countdown.
“This, typically from @corybernardi and his 19th Century thinking, adds nothing to it. #politicalincorrectnessgonemad”.
Meanwhile, Australian hip hop group Hilltop Hoods had a short, sharp message for Senator Bernardi in response to their inclusion on his list.
“Go f*** yourself @corybernardi.,” the group tweeted.