FolkWorld #62 03/2017
© Editorial

The F Word

Artist Video
Make the Planet Earth Great Again

We could tackle the economy first – get rid of all the billionaires
Set the system up so that instead of hoarding, people share
Make housing, food, and health care basic human rights
Around the world, for everyone is how we'd set our sights
If we could get to that point I could confidently say that then
We could make the planet Earth great again

With human rights around the world, there'd be no refugees
No safeguarding your homeland from terrorists overseas
No need for a border wall, no jobs to protect
With a global basic income established, it's pretty simple and direct
Free trade, fair trade, same damn thing – we get to that point, then
We can make the planet Earth great again

We could take on other issues, like the survival of our race
By which I mean the bipeds on this floating rock in space
The most invasive species anywhere around
The one that keeps on burning everything that can be found
The one that will get it together in the nick of time and then
Make the planet Earth great again

We can stop spending money on antiquated technology
Such as tanks and missiles and most other things military
We can use those vast resources to make us all safe and sound
Windmills in the air, coal and oil in the ground
We can be the envy of the rest of the galaxy when
We make the planet Earth great again

Artist Video

Anthony D'Amato: »I wrote 'If You're Gonna Build A Wall' last Summer during the primaries. I was home from tour with a broken finger and bombarded by election news every day. The rhetoric was dark and divisive and ran counter to a lot of the ideals I always felt like this country was built on. Trump's campaign was the initial spark, but the song touches on race and class and privilege, too. History doesn't look kindly on those who build themselves up by excluding and demonizing the less powerful. If you're going to do that, you'd better be prepared for the consequences.«

Artist Video

Piers Faccini: »More and more walls are springing up around the world. If they haven’t already been built, they’re being talked about, and proudly championed, like the idea of a great wall of Calais or Donald Trump’s even greater wall of Mexico. It’s strange how the word ‘great’ is often applied to the walls human beings have built throughout History. Unlike Hadrian’s wall in Britain, or the Great Wall of China, today’s walls don’t even have the benefit of some architectural merit. There’s nothing remotely great about them. They seem, instead, to be merely the proof of our inability to coexist, sad edifices to exclusion and enmity, nationalism and warmongering.«

Artist Video

Wyatt Easterling: »An American Dream [is] a modern take on the traditional Spanish hero ballad, or corrido, this is the story of a mother and her two small children crossing the Mexican border for a new life in America.«

Artist Video
Old Man Trump

I suppose that Old Man Trump knows just how much racial hate
He stirred up in that bloodpot of human hearts
When he drawed that color line
Here at his Beach Haven family project

Beach Haven ain't my home!
No, I just can't pay this rent!
My money's down the drain,
And my soul is badly bent!
Beach Haven is Trump’s Tower
Where no black folks come to roam,
No, no, Old Man Trump!
Old Beach Haven ain't my home!

I'm calling out my welcome to you and your man both
Welcoming you here to Beach Haven
To love in any way you please and to have some kind of a decent place
To have your kids raised up in.
Beach Haven ain't my home!
No, I just can't pay this rent!
My money's down the drain,
And my soul is badly bent!
Beach Haven is Trump’s Tower
Where no black folks come to roam,
No, no, Old Man Trump!
Old Beach Haven ain't my home!

David Rovics: »Attacking Iran or China or banning Muslim immigration or further deregulating everything will not make America or anyone else great. There's another way forward. Let's MAKE THE PLANET EARTH GREAT AGAIN. I wrote recently about how to have a good rally (hopefully as a small component of a broader movement that includes lots of other tactics). I emphasized the importance of music and culture in any successful social movement. Now I'll get more specific, and share with you my own songs that are especially relevant to the current situation. Lots of other people have written relevant songs as well, and you'll find some of them on my Song News Network feed: Here's my Trump Protest Playlist on Soundcloud, all in one place:

Tom Morello: »I’m standing up against Old Man Trump. When it comes to race relations, he’s like an old-school segregationist. When it comes to foreign policy, he’s like an old-school napalmist. When it comes to women’s issues, he’s like a frat house rapist. So let’s not elect that guy.« For two years, folk icon Woody Guthrie was a tenant in one of the Brooklyn apartment buildings managed by Fred ‘Old Man’ Trump, father of Donald Trump.

Gretchen Peters: »I've been writing a lot. Not songs, but letters to my government representatives - senators, congressmen and women. Exercising my right and obligation as a citizen to hold them accountable for their actions, and letting them know what's important to the people they are representing in Congress (or at least one of them). As I've been writing, I realize yet again that the goal, whether it's a letter to a senator or a song, is to tell a story in as direct and truthful a way as possible. One person's story contains a world. And always, I realize how powerful a song can be - you can open the doors of empathy by showing that world in all its pain and beauty. This is a profoundly troubled time we're living in, and I think songs, and art in general, are going to get us through. That, and a whole lot of people participating in their government, like never before. My heart takes a lot of comfort in the thought of what is being created right now, on both counts. Happy February, happy Valentine's Day - celebrate love wherever you find it.«

Seth Kibel: »...and the short clarinetist played on... I know there's a lot of crazy stuff going on these days, but isn't it comforting to know that no matter what happens, I'll still be out there, annoying someone with my squeaky misery stick?«

Photo Credits: (1) Anthony D'Amato, (2) Piers Faccini, (3) Wyatt Easterling, (4) David Rovics, (5) Ani DiFranco, (6) Ryan Harvey, (7) Gretchen Peters, (8) Seth Kibel (unknown/website).

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