Frank Skinner – Osama Bin Laden

Frank Skinner – Osama Bin Laden (Chords)(PDF)

This will probably be another post entirely lost on my friends across the ocean, unfortunately. It’s a comedian you’ve never heard of at the Secret Policeman’s Ball doing a pastiche of someone who was never famous over there packed with references you won’t get (and even if I explained Michael Barrymore to you, you wouldn’t believe me). So apologies for that. You might want to busy yourselves with this clip of Kristen ‘Ukulele Sweetheart/Mel’ Schaal from the same event.

For the rest of you, it’s a dead easy song to play. Only three chords: F, C7 and Bb and that’s it.

Help Amnesty International.

View Comments


  1. zym October 12th, 2008 2:22 pm

    hahah – fantastic

    I saw that on the telly the other night!

  2. alex October 12th, 2008 2:44 pm

    I guess you could consider me a friend (best friend, maybe?) from across the ocean, and maybe I missed something bigger, but that was hilarious.

  3. Woodshed October 12th, 2008 4:24 pm

    zym: On the subject of unexpected telly ukes, Jem Cooke turned up strumming her uke on that Blue Peter thing last night. Turns out she’s the reason Janet Ellis got on Blue Peter. For which every young boy of the time owes her a debt of gratitude.

    alex: Glad you enjoyed it.

  4. Jennifer October 12th, 2008 4:50 pm

    I have to agree with my yank friend, Alex. I thought it was hilarious. I knew who Osama Bin Laden and Macy Gray were. That’s about all you need. I’m sure it might be funnier on “other levels”, but it works just fine down here in the lowly states.

  5. Jennifer October 12th, 2008 5:00 pm

    In fact, I’m sorry but, seriously, what references was this video “packed with” that your “friends across the ocean” couldn’t get? Do we not have DVDs over here? Or perhaps we don’t watch the news and see the videos of Osama Bin Laden in a cave? True we don’t know the original song, but how hard could it be to find a youtube clip of it, to, you know, share instead of condescend? And does not the song stand-up on it’s own? And as far as the Michael Barrymore reference, all you had to do was give us a link to wikipedia. It’s not like we don’t understand celebrity scandals of the murderous kind. I mean hell, we have O.J. Simpson.
    Oh sorry, that reference may be “entirely lost” on you.

  6. Woodshed October 12th, 2008 6:03 pm

    Jennifer: Apologies accepted.

  7. J-Hob October 12th, 2008 10:27 pm

    What a funny little song! I see ol’ Frankie has been studying the Formby singing style of late.

    The references that a non-uk resident might not get are the ice cream van, barrymore and strictly no dancing, maybe not packed but I’d say there’s a fair few of them in there!

  8. Woodshed October 12th, 2008 10:39 pm

    John: And the whole thing is a reference to the Formby Hitler songs. I think he’s making an interesting point with that. There are so few humorous songs or political songs – never mind both combined.

  9. J-Hob October 12th, 2008 10:43 pm

    Could you point me in the direction of Formby’s Hitler songs? I’ve not heard them, and you can chalk that one up as a reference that I didn’t get.

  10. Woodshed October 12th, 2008 11:20 pm

    Imagine Me On The Maginot Line. Not the most biting satire, it has to be said. I think Frank was mainly influenced by the Dad’s Army theme tune.

  11. zym October 13th, 2008 12:39 am

    George Formby punches HItler in the face in ‘Let George do it’

  12. Cheerful One October 13th, 2008 7:59 am

    Something funny on a Monday morning! That doesn’t happen often.

  13. Woodshed October 13th, 2008 7:41 pm

    Andy: I’ve never seen a Formby film. But I’d watch it if he punched the real Hitler in the face.

    Emma: Glad you got a grin out of it. I’m sooo glad I don’t have that Monday morning feeling any more.

  14. mute October 14th, 2008 1:41 pm

    I saw it on the tv and the repeat, loved it. The Barrymore line had me in stitches.

  15. Woodshed October 14th, 2008 10:19 pm

    mute: Definitely the best line.

    I have it on good authority that Frank learnt the uke at one of the UOGB’s workshops.

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  18. kieran October 14th, 2011 6:56 pm

    Bla Bla Bla….AWESOME!!!

  19. kieran October 14th, 2011 6:57 pm

    Its a shame that the video is not played on u tube anymore!! :)

  20. Josh July 15th, 2012 11:19 am

    I think i know how to play this song now! But i would just like to check i have the strumming pattern correct, could someone post it on here please?? Thanks

  21. Woodshed July 15th, 2012 1:19 pm

    Josh: There isn’t a “correct” strumming pattern. If it fits and you like then it’s correct.

  22. CMCV December 30th, 2012 5:38 pm

    Strumming Pattern Please!!!

  23. John July 2nd, 2013 5:13 pm

    The minute I heard this back in 2010, I thought I had to learn it. It worked for a long time here in the states with minor modifications (Charlie Sheen – due to his famously odd behavior – was subbed in for Michael Barrymore).

    I love it when comedy is used to skewer those who deserve it. Then, they got the guy, and the song suddenly seemed terribly dated. :D

    Still – I thought Frank did a lovely job with this.

  24. Woodshed July 3rd, 2013 9:00 am

    John: Yeah, this one was always going to have a limited lifespan. Funny stuff though.

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