Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Petula Clark ‘in disbelief’ at Nashville bomber who played ‘Downtown’ ahead of explosion

Sixties hit played from a recreational vehicle that exploded on Christmas Day

Adam White
Wednesday 30 December 2020 07:27 GMT
Comments
Police camera captures moment of Nashville blast

Petula Clark has expressed her shock after her hit song “Downtown” was played aloud from a car that exploded in Nashville on Christmas Day.

On 25 December, a recreational vehicle rigged with explosives blew up in downtown Nashville, leaving as many as 40 buildings damaged.

Before the blast, a recording played from the vehicle warning those nearby that an explosion was imminent, along with a ticking countdown clock that was spliced into Clark’s 1964 hit “Downtown”.

Writing on her official Facebook page, Clark said she was in “shock and disbelief” after hearing the track was a part of the incident.

“I love Nashville and its people,” Clark wrote. “Why this violent act – leaving behind it such devastation? ... I was told that the music in the background of that strange announcement was me singing ‘Downtown’! Of all the thousands of songs – why this one?”

Clark continued: “Of course, the opening lyric is ‘When you’re alone and life is making you lonely you can always go downtown’. But millions of people all over the world have been uplifted by this joyful song. Perhaps you can read something else into these words – depending on your state of mind. It’s possible.”

Clark concluded by writing that she wished to “wrap [her] arms around Nashville”.

Tennessee police have named 63-year-old Anthony Quinn Warner as a “person of interest” in the blast, adding that they believe Warner “perished” in the explosion, which otherwise injured three people.

Petula Clark (Tim P Whitby/Getty/Mark Humphrey/AP)

David Rausch, the director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, told NBC’s Today programme that the “intent” of the incident looked like “more destruction than death”.

Authorities are also investigating claims that Warner was “paranoid” about 5G technology, and that he believed conspiracy theories suggesting it was being used to spy on people.

Amazon Music logo

Enjoy unlimited access to 70 million ad-free songs and podcasts with Amazon Music

Sign up now for a 30-day free trial

Sign up
Amazon Music logo

Enjoy unlimited access to 70 million ad-free songs and podcasts with Amazon Music

Sign up now for a 30-day free trial

Sign up

Clark’s “Downtown” became an international smash in 1964, reaching number two on the UK singles chart, and number one on the US Billboard chart.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in