But it seems UK jailbirds don’t need to have shot a man in Reno to have their strumming privileges removed.

The man in black’s famous efforts to effect prison reform through song may be undermined by the British government’s decision to ban prisoners from having electric and steel-stringed guitars in their cells.

Labour MP and guitarist Kevin Brennan wants to know why initiatives like singer Billy Bragg’s Jail Guitar Doors programme to provide guitars to prisoners as a route to rehabilitation are being undermined.

Prisons Minister Jeremy Wright is reported as saying he will look into whether the restrictions are fair.

In the meantime, Bragg, who is currently touring Down Under, heard the train whistle blowin’ and tweeted to Brennan: “I picked up your comments from here in Australia. Had heard from my contacts this happened. What can we do?”

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