Rare Personal Content On NYLPM: my resignation became official today, and it’s time for the NYLPM Quit Your Job With The Pop Stars round-up.

Perhaps most obviously we have “Frankly Mr Shankly” by The Smiths. I would fantasise about all job resignations being like this, before I even had a job. But the 21st Century is now not only breathing down my neck, it has me firmly by the collar, and musical history seems curiously untroubled by the fact. Besides, my immediate boss is really nice and I’m working a notice period, so cracks about his poetry seem inappropriate.

The raging defiance so archly given voice in the Smiths’ track, though, is the core mood of job-leaving tracks. The subtext generally is that the singer in question is giving an emphatic finger to the man in order that they can head off to be an indie rock star! Yeah! As usual Wire managed to reduce the form to its essence, with the blistering “Mr Suit”, with its hard-to-forget refrain: “No no no no no no Mr.Suit”. Now that’s telling him! I hum that tune to myself when thinking of my overboss, last heard smugly telling senior managers how he expected “70% acceptance but 100% compliance” with his latest diktats. I wonder if he uses that line on the mistress he parachuted into a high-ranking job in one of our smaller departments. Maybe I’ll ask her.

The most stylish job-no-more track I know of is The Go-Between’s “Draining The Pool For You”. Robert Forster has to clean out a rich bloke’s pool. He doesn’t like it, and he’s none too keen on the rich bloke either. The usual vocal poise and understated guitar excellence result. It’s a good one to keep on your MP3 player if you’re planning to ditch a manual labour job.

Much job-loss music concerns itself with the horrible consequences of unemployment. (“One In Ten”, by UB40, a band who did their bit in the fight for full employment by having about a million unneccessary horn players) But unemployment in the short term – a month or two – is actually quite good. Meanwhile life at the newly left workplace goes on and the migrant worker goes from being at the core of the team to a forgotten face in a wall of indistinguishable photos. In a sense, even though it’s about a prison, Toots And The Maytal’s “54-46 (Was My Number)” is the truest job departure tune of them all. “Right now, someone else has that number….”. I mean, it could be about ‘phone extensions, right?

(Let me know your favourite job-quitting track…..)