Arsenal Fans Outside England Should See This – The Riders of the night

Time for all you foreign Gooners to learn a bit about what Arsenal fans got up-to at Games in years gone by. Not many fans (including me) wouldn’t be knowing so much stuff about our beloved Arsenal

The Riders of the night:

Once upon a time in North London there was a bunch of Lads who were made up all different political and religious beliefs, they all left school and took on different and varying jobs. Among them were Brickies, Window Cleaners, Market Traders, Duckers & Divers, and a few musicians. Some would ply their trade on Chapel Market or the building sites of London, others in any place they could get a gig. But one thing these lads all had in common was a love of beer, birds, Beanos and most importantly a pathological and unswerving loyalty and devotion to Arsenal Football Club. Community meetings were held most weeks on Saturday mornings in various boozers in the N5 vicinity, followed by the mass meeting on the terraced steps of The Clock End at Arsenal’s famous stadium in Highbury.

This was a place where sporting entertainment in various guises could be witnessed. It was also one of the few places you could legally get a light ale after 3 o’clock on a Saturday afternoon as the country was still in the grips of the post-war licensing laws. All in all a good day out could be pretty much guaranteed and the revelry would often be dragged out into the late of night. Alternately there would be weeks when The Arsenal would visit other places and the lads would act as The Gunners “12th Man”. The location of these places could vary in distance from as short as the other end of the Seven Sisters Road to such far flung places as Newcastle in the North, Swansea in the West and as far south as you could go without getting your feet wet. Occasionally even a passport was needed, as a successful season in the homeland could mean some ventures into Europe to play some games against Johnny Foreigner. It didn’t really matter where these lads were travelling to, they were all on the BEANO!

The Riders of the Night – Arsenal

As the years rolled by and the Beanos continued, the Lads outlook on things changed very little, something that cannot be said of the people that held power over the game they all love. Slowly but surely the People’s Game was turned into the corporate family day out package that it has become today. Supporters of all football clubs, not only Arsenal, getting priced out of the game and lifestyle that had been their right since birth. Their spiritual homes being torn down to be replaced, in some cases miles from their original location, by flat pack stadiums of little or no character and the emphasis more on extracting the money from your pocket rather than the voice from your hearts and throats.

Coupled with these facts many of the Lads were getting shorter on breath, grey-er on top and were finding it increasingly harder to recover from Sunday morning hangovers enough to get though a full 90 minutes running around like loonies on Hackney Marshes for whichever Sunday morning pub football sides they happened to be turning out for. A void in their lives needed to be filled and with this “The Riders of the Night” were born. You may get too old to pull on a pair of football boots and smash one into the top corner of the net following a jinxing 30 yard run, but you’re never too old to sling a guitar strap over your shoulder. From there on in, the Lads have been on a mission to liven up the once staid and dour genre of Football records.

 Kicking off with the already legendary “We’re The Clock End, Highbury” release. Available through The Menacing Jester Recording Company, it includes “Eyes Right…” a powerful punk anthem lamenting various Highbury Heroes and magic moments in the life of a Gooner. On “The Midnight Patrol” Mick The Bins recollects tales from the 70’s and the more unsavoury side of what it was like following your team back in the day. Done in their unique “Trip-notic Ruckumentary” style. “The Original Gooner” is what it says on the tin. The story of how the word “Gooner” came about from the horses mouth so to speak.

The Riders’ work is never done and more tunes being scribed and a further release to come with ditties all done in their own uniquely unpredictable style. Work has also recently begun on a venture of colossal proportions that we are keeping firmly under wraps at the moment. With some live gigs also in the planning, watch this space for more adventure and entertainment. Up 

Watch this video:

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Written by Dinesh V

Co-founder of Soccersouls. Living a start-up life 24/7
Follow @dineshintwit

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