The Clash

Career Opportunities

Composed by Joe Strummer / Mick Jones / Paul Simonon / Topper Headon

Song Review by

One of those great "take this job and shove it" punk-style protests, "Career Opportunities" was the perfect, "I don't wanna" song (in this case, a straight job) in the Ramones' tradition; it even substitutes a well-placed "Oi" for the more American, Ramonesy "Hey." Compared to the Clash's later, more solution-orientated offerings, "Career Opportunities" was a naïve diatribe, but it's effective like other Clash songs simply because of the purity and ferocity of spirit -- in execution and in the onomatopoeic quality of the music (the guitar accompanying "the one that never knocks" brings to mind a rap on the door, etc.). Strummer is at his sneering best, even though the lines behind it aren't all that sneer-worthy. Perhaps it's the kind of incongruity that the Clash's harshest critics picked up on; as if to underscore in hindsight the song was kind of...stupid, they reprised it on their triple-threat genre-blender album, Sandinista, with a chorus of children singing the verses, accompanied by what sounds like toy instruments.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
The Clash 1977 Sony Legacy / Sony Music
Sandinista! 1980 Music on Vinyl 2:30
Story of the Clash, Vol. 1 1988 Epic/Legacy 1:52
Clash on Broadway 1991 Columbia
Into the 80's 1992 KTS
From Here to Eternity: Live 1999 Sony Music Distribution 2:06
The Clash/London Calling/Combat Rock [2000] 2000 Sony Music Distribution
The Essential Clash 2003 Sony Music / Sony Music Entertainment
The Essential Clash [DVD] 2003 Smv
Pearl Harbour '79 2004 CBS Records 1:52
Give 'Em Enough Rope/The Clash 2007 CBS Records 1:52
Live: Revolution Rock 2008 Sony Music Distribution
Live at Shea Stadium 2008 Legacy / Epic 2:05
The Complete Studio Albums 2013 Sony Music 1:54
Box Set Music on Vinyl 2:30
Pier Pressure Tendolar
blue highlight denotes editor's pick