Cowell in a Rage over ‘stupid’ campaign | The Daily Dust delivering the best bric a brac, daily news and events with a British flavour


Raging against the X-factor machine.

An internet campaign to see Rage Against the Machine’s classic song ‘Killing in the Name Of’ beat whoever wins this year’s X-factor to the Christmas Number 1 spot has gathered so much momentum that even Simon Cowell is looking a bit worried.

The X-Factor main man today branded the campaign ‘stupid’ and said it was ‘incredibly dismissive’ of the show’s audience.

He said: “”If there’s a campaign, and I think the campaign’s aimed directly at me, it’s stupid. Me having a No 1 record at Christmas is not going to change my life particularly.

“I think it’s quite a cynical campaign geared at me that is actually going to spoil the party for these three.”

However, that hasn’t stopped the Facebook group Rage Against the Machine for Christmas Number 1 attracting over 550,000 members since its launch at the start of the month, a figure that could well be enough to topple whoever wins the Cowell karaoke.

Last year’s number one from Alexandra Burke sold 576,000 copies but 2007 winner Leon Jackson did it with just 275,000 so if everyone in the Facebook group buys the single then the nation could be in for a very metal Christmas.

The campaign’s organisers Tracy and Jon Morter have said that it is not an attack at the X-Factor contestants, more a yearning for a return to the days when the Christmas number one was not predictable and not X-Factored as it is today (the TV show’s winner has claimed the festive spot every year since 2005).

If the campaign is successful, not only would it represent a resentment of the monotony of Cowell’s winners always being guaranteed the Christmas top-spot, it would also be a massive show of the power of social media when used in campaigns.

In addition to trying to beat the odds, the campaign – started by Tracy and Jon Morter – has also set up a page where people can donate money to the homeless charity Shelter - they’ve already raised over £4,000.

Do it

OK, that’s the impartial journalistic part over with…here on The Daily Dust, we fully back Tracy and Jon’s campaign and want our readers to follow our lead. So, click here to join the group, and then follow these instructions.

Wait until December 13 at the earliest before buying the song, otherwise it will not count towards the required chart week. Once the 13th hits, between then and the 19th, download Killing in the Name Of from any site that contributes to the UK chart such as iTunes, HMV, Virgin etc.

For those of you who really hate the X-Factor/want Rage to succeed, don’t buy the song more than three times otherwise it will be viewed as suspicious by the charts. Also, there are some complicated rules about following direct links to online shops making a download not eligible to chart, so probably safest if you head to the frontpage of a site such as iTunes yourself and find it from there.

Then, once you’ve got your download, turn it up and enjoy one of the best heavy rock songs ever, all while you head over to the campaign’s Justgiving page to donate a bit of money to Shelter.

Let’s take the power back and rage against the crap music machine!


  1. Twas the week before Christmas and all through the land
    Music was fighting, band against bland,
    For that coveted place at the top of the charts
    But the truth of the matter was most had lost heart.

    For it seemed now that music meant money and fame
    Not writing new songs but just getting your name
    Into Heat magazine and becoming a star
    Based on being on TV; it had all gone too far

    What had once been a joke, what had once passed the time
    Now ruled the world and it must be a crime
    For the X-Factor grinch to control Number One
    It was cruel, it was tragic. But what could be done?

    Music meant more ? we knew this was wrong.
    It meant changing the world. It meant writing a song.
    But now it meant voting and phone-ins and tears
    And Cowell ruining Christmas for all who had ears.

    But someone decided it wasn?t too late
    There were still those who cared about true music’s fate
    So they gathered an army who wanted much more
    Than an X-Factor Christmas. This time it was war.

    Their plan was quite simple and really quite sound:
    To achieve something concrete with one English pound.
    With one unified gesture of buying one track
    Music, united, would take Christmas back

    They would each buy a copy of a song loved of age
    A song that had meaning, and swearing, and rage
    A song to remind us why music won?t die
    A slow euthanasia under Cowell’s watchful eye.

    The saviours of Christmas and music took heart
    And pledged, in some small way, to each play their part
    In dismantling an empire of vacuous gain
    Where promotion of talentless wankers held reign.

    Ignore the X-Factor and it might go away
    In the meantime, buy music, ’cause it’s here to stay.
    So go out and buy Rage and we might win this fight
    Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

  2. I think I’ve read an article that meets the definition of ‘hypocrisy’ more perfectly than anything I’ve previously encountered.

    The most highly paid ‘performer’ (estimated 54 million pounds last year) on US TV has the effrontery to complain that buying an alternative to a performer who, as A&R executive for his own record label (under Sony Music) he forced down our throats with a TV programme deliberately timed to sell the most recordings over the busiest sales period of the year is what I would call ‘cynical’ – as are his crocodile tears “not having a Xmas No. 1 won’t effect me, but what about these poor dears who’ve only got the backing of my company and a contract (worth one million, less expenses, PR, grooming, advertising, etc)’.

    The REAL losers here are the new, dynamic musical performers who won’t get a chance because all the money is going to the ‘X-Factory’ competent but bland performers.

  3. I believe the campaign is a good idea. Although it has been frequently pointed out that Sony will benefit from either result (which is of course true), I still feel that any enthusiasm of this kind is positive. It may not be an attack on the major record labels but it at least shows that people can use built up resentment in an interesting way. I’d definitely prefer to hear Rage Against The Machine coming out of cars and shops than three minutes of bland polished noises!


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