Name die Tune

Our primitive car radio cannot pick up BBC6music in the far south land. Condemned to listen to the FM stations from Germany and France has encouraged us to develop our own in-car entertainment. We call the game GEMA after the German organisation for the prevention of music. You are welcome to play this game without paying me or them any royalties. The object of the game is to flick through the radio channels and find and name any good song while at the same time preventing your opponents from hearing enough of a bad song that allows them to name that tune.

This is harder than it might first sound. German & French radio stations appear to be in a time-warp and play a pollution of 70s and 80s pop music. I am not clear if this is a fixed window meaning that the country is doomed forever to endure Phil Collins or if the playlist will move forward one year, every year.

Safety disclaimer

It is only possible to play this game near the French/German border. This is firstly because of the big range of shite stations and secondly because, if the driver is playing, then his bad driving will not stand out on the road. If the driver gets distracted and drives too near to the car in front then the other drivers will assume he is French. If he pulls in sharply in front of another car then he taken to be German. And if he is too busy to indicate at a roundabout then every one is happy.


1. Player 1 (front passenger or driver or long armed rear seat passenger) flicks to next radio station.

2.The tune plays

3. If it is a good tune then Player 1 is allowed to shout out the title/artist to win a point.

4. If it is a bad tune then Player 1 must flick to the next channel quickly enough to prevent Player 2 from naming the bad tune’s title/artist.

5. If Player 2 can name a bad song then he gains a point and takes control of the buttons.


The trick with this game is for the button-meister to switch off bad tunes too quickly for his opponent to hear enough of the bad tune to enable him to name it but to dwell long enough in the process to pick out that rare good song. As with all of our autobahn games the driver can score an extra point if he pulls out into the outside lane just in front of a Swiss registered 4WD BMW that he considers to be driving too fast for the good of the planet.

Our normal Autobahn match will hit the entire back catalogue of Gilbert O’Sullivan, Chris de Berk, the ever repeating medley of Sting’s greatest hit with perhaps a point scoring snippet of the soundtrack of Bellville Rendezvous in a rare gap in one of the many “talking very quickly about French politics all day” channels from over the river.

So now over to you button-meisters, hop those channels, Name die Tune & send contributions to my internet car radio fund.

One response to “Name die Tune

  1. We’ve also noticed the dirth of decent music stations when in Germany; you’re right that the French/German border is particularly bad. We embraced it the first time we went… gleefully singing along to Lady Gaga and her ilk. This was mainly because we only had a tape deck at the time, and but one tape with us: Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Rumours’. At the end of the two weeks, we knew all of the words to that and most of Katy Perry’s ‘California Girls’. I think your game might be a welcome distraction when we eventually return to the Continent.

    All together now… “California girls are undeniable…”
    Undeniably turgid.

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