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18 September 2020, 09:59
Sir Van Morrison has hit out at the government in a series of new songs protesting against the coronavirus lockdown and wearing face coverings.
Van Morrison has accused the government of "taking our freedom" in three new songs.
In the lyrics, Morrison claims scientists are "making up crooked facts" to put through plans that "enslave" the nation.
"The new normal, is not normal," he sings in one track. "We were born to be free".
This week, prime minister Boris Johnson said the government was doing "everything in our power" to stop another lockdown.
Recorded in Belfast and England, Morrison's three new songs are in his usual jazz and blues style, but the lyrics are more like his early days in Northern Irish rock band Them back in the 1960s.
'No More Lockdown' includes the lyrics: "No more lockdown / No more government overreach / No more fascist bullies / Disturbing our peace."
He continues: "No more taking of our freedom / And our God given rights / Pretending it's for our safety / When it's really to enslave."
Another song refers to a widely-shared Facebook post, of a screenshot from a UK government website stating: "Covid-19 is no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious disease (HCID) in the UK".
While Covid-19 does not meet the criteria for an HCID - which usually has a high fatality rate - the disease is still actually considered highly infectious, with no specific vaccines currently available.
Earlier this year, Morrison sparked controversy by criticising what he labelled the "pseudoscience" around coronavirus.
Announcing a stand to "save live music" on his website, the 75-year-old said socially distanced gigs were not financially sound.
"I call on my fellow singers, musicians, writers, producers, promoters and others in the industry to fight with me on this. Come forward, stand up, fight the pseudo-science and speak up."
Van Morrison said his new songs will be released at two-week intervals, with 'Born To Be Free' coming on September 25.
He said: "I'm not telling people what to do or think, the government is doing a great job of that already. It's about freedom of choice, I believe people should have the right to think for themselves."