From:   rj@riseup.net
Sent time:   Sunday, October 16, 2011 1:32:24 PM
To:   september17@googlegroups.com
Subject:   Re: [september17discuss] this land is your land
 

Right on. But I def feel like it could feed in to that sentiment about

OWS. I agree with every good thing you said about Mr. Guthrie, love that

dude.

 

> The assumption that "This Land Is Your Land" is written from a

> middle-class

> white perspective is not accurate. Guthrie was part of a multi-racial

> group

> of musicians who traveled the country performing together in the forties

> and

> fifties, during the Jim Crow era. Two of the most prominent members of

> this

> group were the Black musicians Lead Belly and Sonny Terry. And Guthrie was

> hardly writing from a middle-class perspective - he dedicated his life to

> supporting poor farmers and workers and was a member of the Communist

> Party,

> which did extensive organizing against racism during this period, from the

> Scottsboro Boys and anti-lynching campaigns to anti-eviction campaigns in

> Harlem to building multiracial sharecroppers' organizations in the South.

> I

> can see how the title and chorus sound like a call for colonization, but

> that is not at all what its or Guthrie's politics are about. However, I do

> agree that we shouldn't limit ourselves just to the "oldies but goodies."

> We

> need to develop a musical repertoire that looks like the 99% - new songs

> as

> well as old ones, from as many genres as possible.

>

> Doug

>

> On Sun, Oct 16, 2011 at 1:38 PM, <rj@riseup.net> wrote:

>

>> It's important tho to also think about how this song sounds from the

>> perspective of colonization. If this will be a disenfranchised, mainly

>> white, middle class movement that's only addressing the issues pertinent

>> to that sliver of the 99% than maybe that won't be a problem. But

>> otherwise we'd do better to dig deeper for songs that resonate with all.

>>

>> And it's not that I don't think "This Land is Your Land" is a beautiful

>> song. It even has interesting variants for this particular setting, such

>> as this verse:

>> "There was a big high wall there that tried to stop me;

>> Sign was painted, it said private property;

>> But on the back side it didn't say nothing;

>> This land was made for you and me."

>>

>> But let's dig deeper for something that can really resonate with a

>> broader

>> sector of the 99%!

>>

>> > "This Land is Your Land" is a particularly appropriate choice for this

>> > moment in history. As you may know it was written " in response to

>> Irving

>> > Berlin's "God Bless America", which Guthrie considered unrealistic and

>> > complacent. Tired of hearing Kate Smith sing it on the radio, he wrote

>> a

>> > response originally called "God Blessed America for Me". Guthrie

>> varied

>> > the

>> > lyrics over time, sometimes including more overtly political verses

>> than

>> > appear in recordings or publications.

>> >

>> > On Sunday, October 16, 2011, Liliana Gomez <liligomez13@gmail.com>

>> wrote:

>> >> Thanks for the great lyrics, hadn't heard/remebered them in a long

>> time

>> >> Lili G

>> >>

>> >>

>> >>

>> >> On Sun, Oct 16, 2011 at 1:03 PM, Marina Sitrin

>> <marina.sitrin@gmail.com

>> >

>> > wrote:

>> >>>

>> >>> Yes!!!! Not only because I grew up on this sort of music (radical

>> >>> parents) but that song is so transformative and unifying in spaces.

>> >>> Songs are a part of most social movements around the world, and have

>> >>> been a part of US movements historically as well. (Civil Rights,

>> labor

>> >>> - including IWW, predating the AFLCIO, women, anti nuke, and on and

>> on

>> >>> - we have a lot to choose from)

>> >>>

>> >>> I would love to begin or end our assemblies with a song.

>> >>>

>> >>> Marina

>> >>>

>> >>> On Sun, Oct 16, 2011 at 12:35 PM, acpollack2@juno.com

>> >>> <acpollack2@juno.com> wrote:

>> >>> > Yesterday during the march to Times Square, and then again in

>> > Washington

>> >>> > Square Park, folks broke out into "This Land is Your Land" by

>> Woodie

>> >>> > Guthrie. This made me happy, both because it's a great song and

>> >>> because

>> > I

>> >>> > had already been thinking that one way to diversify our message is

>> >>> not

>> > only

>> >>> > to think of new chants, but also to start using more songs.

>> >>> > I was trying to remember the final verses which are SO relevant to

>> >>> OWS,

>> > but

>> >>> > couldn't at the moment. Here they are. Let's use them on future

>> > marches!

>> >>> >

>> >>> > As I went walking I saw a sign there

>> >>> > And on the sign it said "No Trespassing."

>> >>> > But on the other side it didn't say nothing,

>> >>> > That side was made for you and me.

>> >>> >

>> >>> > In the squares of the city, In the shadow of a steeple;

>> >>> > By the relief office, I'd seen my people.

>> >>> > As they stood there hungry, I stood there asking,

>> >>> > Is this land still made for you and me

>> >>> >

>> >>>

>> >>>

>> >>>

>> >>> --

>> >>> Seamos realistas, hagamos lo imposible ~ che

>> >>

>> >>

>> >

>>

>>

>>

>>

>>

>

 

 

 

 

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