“Generation X” by Raymy Boyle was included on the printed inner sleeve of Carry On Oi! Raymy was 15 years old, a couple of years older than me. Raymy had teamed up with me to form a two piece bedroom punk rock band called Exile in the christmas of 1980. We both lived in Livingston, Scotland, which was a hotbed for angry disenfranchised youths infatuated with punk rock. The band, very loose term, never got any further than me strumming an out of tune guitar and Raymy talking his way through some lyrics that he’d scrawled down in a jotter. The lyric book was covered with all the latest punk bands of the time such as The Exploited, Cockney Rejects, Angelic Upstarts and Peter & The Test Tube Babies. In fact there were more words on the cover than were included within the four songs that Raymy had written. When I realised that I was never going to be a Steve Jones the band split and the lyric book remained in my bedroom.
At the time Sounds was the only option for a fledging lover of punk rock eager to find out about the latest bands. The NME didn’t tend to write about the bands I liked and the Melody Maker just never got the balance right for me. Generally the weekly issue would arrive in the local RS McColls on a Wednesday and I would be gutted if it wasn’t there and got delivered on the Thursday. There’s no doubt that Garry Bushell was the main writer that championed new punk bands from 1979 onwards. During the summer of 1981 Garry had requested in an issue of Sounds for punk and oi poems to be submitted for the third Oi! album, which had no name at that time. Carry On Oi! was the name that was eventually chosen for the release and the album was recorded during August 1981, which was shortly after the events of Southall.
I found the book of lyrics and selected “Generation X” to be submitted to Garry for consideration. I tore out a couple of pages and then I re-wrote the lyrics verbatim in my very poor handwriting. The address for Spotlight Publications was sourced in the flannel panel of the latest issue of Sounds and a letter was sent. I’d totally forgot about my submittal until I bought a copy of Carry On Oi! from The Other Record Shop in Edinburgh and saw that one of Raymy’s poems had been used. I’d forgotten to tell Raymy of what I’d done, so after getting the bus to Livingston from Edinburgh I went straight to his house and showed him the sleeve. He was more than made up that it had been used.
I’m not aware that Raymy wrote any other poetry (or lyrics) from then on. I do know that he found God in later life, but I haven’t seen him since I moved away from Livingston in 1983.
I’m sitting here shaking wondering when
Another Enola will pass again
And we will be massacred just like before
And we will be victims of a nuclear war
They are all fucking crazy, they ain’t got no sense
They are all killing innocents
We’ll be the last generation, so who will come next
After it’s all over there’ll be a generation x
Is that them going overhead?
In a few more minutes we’ll all be dead
You’ll be screaming on the ground with the burning pain
But nobody can help ‘cos they’re all the same
The politic(ian)s can’t see what they do
Their hunger for power destroys me and you
They are all mass murderers who will save their own necks
After it’s all over, there’ll be a generation x.