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Family goes viral online for singing Suella Braverman sea shanty

The Marsh family’s song outlines how the former Home Secretary ‘spent days just wagging her tongue’ during her short time in office.

20 October 2022

A family of singers have gone viral online after they wrote a sea shanty about the dramatic resignation of former cabinet minister Suella Braverman, who lasted just six weeks as home secretary.

The video of the Marsh family singing their “cheeky” adaptation of the chart-topping Wellerman sea shanty has racked up more than 1.4 million views since it was posted on Twitter on Wednesday night.

The track, written and sung by the family of six from Faversham, Kent, outlines how Ms Braverman “spent days just wagging her tongue” during her short time in office.

Ms Braverman, who resigned on Wednesday, spent 43 full days in office between September 6 and October 19, making her the shortest-serving home secretary in modern political history.

Just hours after the announcement, Ben Marsh, 45, his wife Danielle, 44, and their four children Alfie, 16, Thomas, 14, Ella, 13, and Tess, 11, had written, performed and recorded their parody song.

“We seem to be reach people when everyone’s hit an absolute low point in politics and when the world’s falling apart,” Mr Marsh told the PA news agency.

“It’s about not taking it too seriously.

“I think the minute you start taking it seriously it loses its fun and it loses its edge.”

Tory turmoil
Suella Braverman spent 43 full days in office between September 6 and October 19, making her the shortest-serving home secretary in modern political history (PA)

The family first went viral at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 when they posted a video of them singing a parody of a song from the musical Les Miserables.

“We did a version of Les Mis One Day More about us all being stuck in lockdown and that one went really viral,” Mr Marsh said.

“I think everyone needed some good news to pick them up and give them a laugh at the start of the pandemic.

“We get such lovely, amazing feedback to our songs and that’s what’s been really nice.”

Dubbed the “Von Trapped” family by the New York Times, they appeared on US talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live in 2020 and the BBC’s Comic Relief a year later.

The Marsh Family from Faversham, Kent: Ben, 45, and Danielle Marsh, 44, and their children Alfie,16, Thomas, 14, Ella, 13, and Tess,11.
Ben Marsh, 45, his wife Danielle, 44, and their four children Alfie, 16, Thomas, 14, Ella, 13, and Tess, 11, wrote and performed their parody song (The Marsh family/PA)

The family’s Twitter account, @MarshSongs, now boasts around 17,000 followers and their YouTube channel has over 120,000 subscribers.

“This all came from the pandemic because we didn’t think there was anything that we could do apart from keep out of everyone’s way,” Mr Marsh said.

“But when we got messages back from nurses and doctors, we realised some of this stuff can serve as a bit of a good in all the bad.

“You do get a bit of a kick out of posting, like watching the numbers ramp up and our video has more than a million views now on Twitter.

“That’s super and it is really exciting for the kids, although they wouldn’t admit it.”

Mr Marsh said that although the family sometimes receives negative comments on their videos, they will continue to sing about mainstream topics.

“Unfortunately, it’s something that sort of goes with the territory,” Mr Marsh said.

“I think your shell hardens a bit when when you get used to it and you just get used to blocking and muting.

“We’re not on a mission for for glory or exposure, we’re just singing things happening and how we see them.

“And unless that becomes too awkward or complicated for us, then we’re happy to carry on doing that.”

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