He's the artist I've seen 'live' most over the past 20-odd years, through all the benefits and the protests and the campaigns and the celebrations and yes, through all those Prime Ministers too: the last time was on the England, Half English tour where we soberly had to conclude that the new songs were not exactly brilliant; the best times probably the nights at the Town & Country Club Camden, The Thatch on the Holloway Road and the back room at The Half Moon Putney where we said hello to him at the bar before he went on.
He was always funny and modest and righteously angry and true, and he often made us cry.
So Happy Birthday Stephen William Bragg, electric busker, one-man Clash, songwriter, author, pundit, protester and Dad.
You don't need our Christmas Cards, you already have our hearts...
Billy Bragg - 'Days Like These' (1985)
Billy Bragg - 'Ontario, Quebec And Me' (1991)
Billy Bragg - 'Brickbat' (1996)