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The Soup Dragons - I’m Free

Released in 1990. Cover of a Rolling Stones tune, with guest vocals from Junior Reid. The band’s name is inspired by a character from The Clangers.

“Gary has something of a coke-brain, which gives him the memory of a goldfish. He can’t remember somebody’s name from five seconds ago, and he repeats lyrics from songs as if he made them up himself. So at one point Gary starts to spout The Soup Dragons: in his drink and drug-addled mind, like he considers himself some kind of great philosopher.

“I’m Free” is the track the guys are listening to on their way to Newton Haven. Simon is singing along with it, Paddy is bopping away and Martin [Freeman] is humming along with the bassline. That scene actually comes directly from my own life. My friends who went on the pub crawl with me when I was 19 all came to the London premiere, and I said to one of them, Ian, ‘Did you recognise the bit that was inspired by our trip to Nick’s wedding?’ We were driving to Devon in his car, and he was playing Get It Hot by AC/DC. I said, ‘I haven’t heard this in ages. Didn’t I put this song on a tape for you once?’ And he went, ‘Yeah, this is it! This is the tape!’ In real life he’d brought it along as a joke, but in the movie Gary has had that tape in his car stereo since 1990.”

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