Friday, September 2, 2011

Joan Baez sings "Joe Hill". In Honor of Labor Day.

 

I dreamed I saw Joe Hill last night,
alive as you and me.
Says I "But Joe, you're ten years dead"
"I never died" said he,
"I never died" said he.
 

"The Copper Bosses killed you Joe,
they shot you Joe", says I.
"Takes more than guns to kill a man"
Says Joe "I didn't die"
Says Joe "I didn't die"


"In Salt Lake City, Joe," says I,

Him standing by my bed, 
"They framed you on a murder charge," 
Says Joe, "But I ain't dead," 
Says Joe, "But I ain't dead." 

And standing there as big as life 
and smiling with his eyes.
Says Joe "What they can never kill 
went on to organize, 
went on to organize" 

From San Diego up to Maine, 
in every mine and mill, 
Where working men defend their rights, 
it's there you'll find Joe Hill,
it's there you'll find Joe Hill! 

I dreamed I saw Joe Hill last night,
alive as you and me. 
Says I "But Joe, you're ten years dead" 
"I never died" said he, 
"I never died" said he.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

"It's Been Good to Know You" Woody Guthrie




CHORUS: So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh.
This dusty old dust is blowin' my home,
And I got to be rollin' along.

I've sung this song, but I'll sing it again,
Of the place that I lived on the West Texas plains,
In the city of Pampa, the county is Gray,
And here's what all of the people there say:

CHORUS: So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh.
This dusty old dust is blowin' my home,
And I got to be driftin' along.

Now, the telephone rang, an' it jumped off the wall,
That was the preacher, payin' his call.
He said, "Look at the shape that the world is in
An' you got your last chance of salvation of sin!"

So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh.
This dusty old dust is a-gettin' my home,
And I got to be driftin' along.

The church houses were jammed, and packed,
The people were stuffed from the front to the back
An it was so dusty that the
Preacher could not read a word of his text,
An' he folded his specs, an' he took up collection,
Said:

So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh;
So long, it's been good to know yuh.
This dusty old dust is a-gettin' my home,
And I got to be driftin' along.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

"This Land is Your Land" - Woody Guthrie

Painting by Kathy Jakobsen from her book
"This Land is Your Land"
Published by Living Gold Press




Chorus:
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California, to the New York Island
From the redwood forest, to the gulf stream waters
This land was made for you and me

As I was walking a ribbon of highway
I saw above me an endless skyway
I saw below me a golden valley
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

I've roamed and rambled and I've followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts
And all around me a voice was sounding
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

The sun comes shining as I was strolling
The wheat fields waving and the dust clouds rolling
The fog was lifting a voice come chanting
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

As I was walkin' - I saw a sign there
And that sign said - no tress passin'
But on the other side .... it didn't say nothin!
Now that side was made for you and me!

Chorus

In the squares of the city - In the shadow of the steeple
Near the relief office - I see my people
And some are grumblin' and some are wonderin'
If this land's still made for you and me.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

"If I Fell" - The Beatles





If I fell in love with you
Would you promise to be true
And help me understand
'cause I've been in love before
And I found that love was more
Than just holding hands

If I give my heart to you
I must be sure
From the very start
That you would love me more than her

If I trust in you, oh please
Don't run and hide
If I love you too, oh please
Don't hurt my pride like her
'cause I couldn't stand the pain
And I would be sad if our new love was in vain

So I hope you see that I
Would love to love you
And that she will cry
When she learns we are two
cause I couldn't stand the pain
and I would be sad if our new love was in vain

so I hope you see that I
would love to love you
and that she will cry when she learns we are two,
if I fell in love with you.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

BBC's "Fresh Water"


Here is a sample of what we are going to see today in
BBC's Planet Earth production of "Fresh Water"


Sunday, April 24, 2011

"It MIght As Well Be Spring" written by Richard Rodgers
and Oscar Hammerstein, sung by Ella Fitzgerald


















I'm as restless as a willow in a windstorm,
I'm as jumpy as a puppet on a string.
I'd say that I had spring fever,
But I know it isn't spring.
I'm starry-eyed and vaguely discontented
Like a nightingale without a song to sing.
Oh, why should I have spring fever
When it isn't even spring?
I keep wishing I were somewhere else,
Walking down a strange new street.
Hearing words that I have never heard
From a man I've yet to meet.
I'm as busy as a spider spinning daydreams,
I'm as giddy as a baby on a swing.
I haven't seen a crocus or a rosebud
Or a robin on the wing.
But I feel so gay,
In a melancholy way,
That it might as well be spring,
It might as well be spring.

Read more about Ella Fitzgerald and listen to more
of her amazing music here.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Natalie Cole/Nat Cole: "Unforgettable"

Unfortunately, the Natalie/Nat Cole version of this song has been removed by Youtube. Here is the original version sung by Nat King Cole.



Unforgettable, that's what you are
Unforgettable, though near or far
Like a song of love that clings to me
How the thought of you does things to me
Never before has someone been more
Unforgettable, in every way
And forevermore, (and forevermore)
That's how you'll stay, (that's how you'll stay)
That's why darling it's incredible
That someone so unforgettable
Thinks that I am unforgettable too

(musical interlude)

No, never before has someone been more
Ooh unforgettable, (unforgettable)
In every way, (in every way)
And forevermore, (and forevermore)
That's how you'll stay, (that's how you'll stay)
That's why darling it's incredible
That someone so unforgettable
Thinks that I am unforgettable too!

Click on this link for a biography of Nat King Cole.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

"Oh Danny Boy" in honor of Saint Paddy's Day, 2011




Oh Danny boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling
From glen to glen, and down the mountain side
The summer's gone, and all the flowers are dying
'Tis you, 'tis you must go and I must bide.
But come ye back when summer's in the meadow
Or when the valley's hushed and white with snow
'Tis I'll be here in sunshine or in shadow
Oh Danny boy, oh Danny boy, I love you so.

And if you come, when all the flowers are dying
And I am dead, as dead I well may be
You'll come and find the place where I am lying
And kneel and say an "Ave" there for me.

And I shall hear, tho' soft you tread above me
And all my dreams will warm and sweeter be
If you'll not fail to tell me that you love me
I'll simply sleep in peace until you come to me.

I'll simply sleep in peace until you come to me.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

"Stairway to Heaven" by Led Zeppelin




There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is gold
And she's buying a stairway to heaven
When she gets there she knows, if the stores are all closed
With a word she can get what she came for
Ooh, ooh, and she's buying a stairway to heaven.

There's a sign on the wall but she wants to be sure
'Cause you know sometimes words have two meanings
In a tree by the brook, there's a songbird who sings
Sometimes all of our thoughts are misleading
Ooh, it makes me wonder
Ooh, it makes me wonder.

There's a feeling I get when I look to the west
And my spirit is crying for leaving
In my thoughts I have seen rings of smoke through the trees
And the voices of those who stand looking
and it makes me wonder
really makes me wonder.

And it's whispered that soon if we all call the tune
Then the piper will lead us to reason
And a new day will dawn for those who stand long
And the forest will echo with laughter.

GUITAR SOLO

If there's a bustle in your hedgerow, don't be alarmed now,
It's just a spring clean from the May Queen
Yes, there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run
There's still time to change the road you're on
Ooh, it makes me wonder
Ooh, Ooh, it makes me wonder.

Your head is humming and it won't go, in case you don't know
The piper's calling you to join him
Dear lady, can't you hear the wind blow, and did you know
Your stairway lies on the whispering wind.

GUITAR SOLO

And as we wind on down the road
Our shadows taller than our soul
There walks a lady we all know
Who shines white light and wants to show
How everything still turns to gold
And if you listen very hard
The tune will come to you at last
When all is one and one is all, yeah
To be a rock and not to roll.

And she's buying the stairway to heaven.

You can learn more about the history and
meaning of "Stairway to Heaven" by clicking on
Song Facts

Friday, March 4, 2011

"Good Times, Bad Times" by Led Zeppelin





Cloze exercise. Listen to the song, then fill the blanks.

In the days of my youth, I was what it means to be a ,
Now I've reached that age, I've tried to do all those things I can.
No matter how I , I find my way into the same old jam.

*Good Times, Bad , you know I've had my share;
When my woman left home for a brown eyed man,
Well, I still don't seem to .

Sixteen, I fell in love with a as sweet as could be,
Only took a couple of 'til she was rid of me.
She that she would be all mine and love me 'till the end,
But when I in her ear, I lost another friend, oooh.

*Good Times, Bad , you know I've had my share;
When my woman left home for a brown eyed man,
Well, I still don't seem to .

*Good Times, Bad , you know I've had my share;
When my woman left home for a brown eyed man,
Well, I still don't seem to .

I know what it to be alone, I sure do wish I was at home.
I don't care what the say, I'm love you each and every day.
You can feel the beat within my heart.
Realize, sweet babe, we ain't ever .

This cloze exercise was written by Ed Murray. Ed is an ESL instructor at City College, Mission Campus.

Led Zeppelin was one of the greatest rock music groups. Read about them in Wikipedia

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

"Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?" Bing Crosby




They used to tell me I was building a dream
And so I followed the mob
When there was earth to plow or guns to bear
I was always there right on the job

They used to tell me I was building a dream
With peace and glory ahead
Why should I be standing in line
Just waiting for bread?

Once I built a railroad, I made it run
Made it race against time
Once I built a railroad, now it's done
Brother, can you spare a dime?

Once I built a tower up to the sun
Brick and rivet and lime
Once I built a tower, now it's done
Brother, can you spare a dime?

Once in khaki suits, gee we looked swell
Full of that Yankee-Doodly-dum
Half a million boots went sloggin' through Hell
And I was the kid with the drum

Say, don't you remember, they called me "Al"
It was "Al" all the time
Why don't you remember, I'm your pal
Say buddy, can you spare a dime?

Once in khaki suits, ah gee we looked swell
Full of that Yankee-Doodly-dum
Half a million boots went sloggin' through Hell
And I was the kid with the drum

Oh, say, don't you remember, they called me "Al"
It was "Al" all the time
Say, don't you remember, I'm your pal
Buddy, can you spare a dime?

Workers built the railroads, skyscrapers, and
fought hard for their country during World War One.
Farmers worked their fields to feed the nation.
Now, they are poor, waiting in a bread line.
Naturally, they feel betrayed by the country
they had tried so hard to serve.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Benny Goodman and Peggy Lee: "Why Don't You Do Right??"




You had plenty money, 1922.
You let other women make a fool of you.
Why don't you do right, like some other men do?
Get out of here and get me some money too.

If you had prepared twenty years ago,
You wouldn't be a-wanderin' from door to door.
Why don't you do right, like some other men do?
Get out of here and get me some money too!

Why don't you do right, like some other men do?
Why don't you do right, like some other men do?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

"Happy Days Are Here Again" Annette Hanshaw




Happy days are here again
The skies above are clear again
So let's sing a song of cheer again
Happy days are here again

Altogether shout it now
There's no one
Who can doubt it now
So let's tell the world about it now
Happy days are here again

Your cares and troubles are gone
There'll be no more from now on
From now on ...

Happy days are here again
The skies above are clear again
Let us sing a song of cheer again

So long sad times
Go long bad times
We are rid of you at last

Howdy gay times
Cloudy gray times
You are now a thing of the past

Happy days are here again
The skies above are clear again
So let's sing a song of cheer again
Happy days are here again

Altogether shout it now
There's no one
Who can doubt it now
So let's tell the world about it now
Happy days are here again

Your cares and troubles are gone
There'll be no more from now on
From now on ...

Happy days are here again
The skies above are clear again
Let us sing a song of cheer again


Happy days are here again
The skies above are clear again
Let us sing a song of cheer again

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

"Sixteen Tons" Merle Travis




Some people say a man is made outta mud
A poor man's made outta muscle and blood
Muscle and blood and skin and bones
A mind that's a-weak and a back that's strong.

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don't you call me 'cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store.

I was born one mornin' when the sun didn't shine
I picked up my shovel and I walked to the mine
I loaded sixteen tons of number nine coal
And the straw boss said "Well, a-bless my soul"

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don't you call me 'cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store.

I was born one mornin', it was drizzlin' rain
Fightin' and trouble are my middle name
I was raised in the canebrake by an ol' mama lion
Cain't no-a high-toned woman make me walk the line.

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don't you call me 'cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store.

If you see me comin', better step aside
A lotta men didn't, a lotta men died
One fist of iron, the other of steel
If the right one don't a-get you
Then the left one will.

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don't you call me 'cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store.

Read about Merle Travis, 1917-1983, in Wikipedia.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

"I Have a Dream" from the musical, Mamma Mia.
Original music and lyrics by ABBA.




SOPHIE:
I have a dream
A song to sing
To help me cope
With anything
If you see the wonder
Of a fairy tale
You can take the future
Even if you fail
I believe in angels
Something good in everything I see
I believe in angels
When I know the time is right for me
I'll cross the stream
I have a dream

COMPANY:
I have a dream
A fantasy
To help me through
Reality
And my destination
Makes it worth the while
Pushing through the darkness
Still another mile
I believe in angels
Something good in everything I see
I believe in angels
When I know the time is right for me
I'll cross the stream
I have a dream
I'll cross the stream

SOPHIE:
I have a dream
I'll cross the stream
I have a dream.

Wikipedia has an article about the hit Swedish Rock
group, ABBA. I'll be posting more songs from ABBA
soon.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"I Fall to Pieces" Patsy Cline




I fall to pieces,
Each time I see you again.
I fall to pieces.
How can I be just your friend?

You want me to act like we've never kissed.
You want me to forget, pretend we've never met.
And I've tried and I've tried, but I haven't yet.
You walk by and I fall to pieces.

I fall to pieces,
Each time someone speaks your name.
I fall to pieces.
Time only adds to the flame.

You tell me to find someone else to love,
Someone who'll love me too, the way you used to do.
But each time I go out with some one new,
You walk by and I fall to pieces.

You walk by and I fall to pieces.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

"Walkin' After Midnight" Patsy Cline




I go out walkin'
After midnight
Out in the moonlight
Just like we used to do
I'm always walkin'
After midnight
searching for you
I walk for miles
Along the highway
Well that's just my way of saying I love you
I'm always walkin'
After midnight
Searching for you
I stopped to see a weeping willow
Cryin' on his pillow
Maybe he's crying for me
And as the skies turn gloomy
Night winds whisper to me
I'm lonesome as I can be
I go out walkin'
After midnight
Out in the starlight
Just hoping you may be
Somewhere walkin'
After midnight
Searching for me
I stopped to see a weeping willow
Crying on his pillow
Maybe he's crying for me
And as the skies turn gloomy
Night winds whisper to me
I'm lonesome as I can be
I'm out walkin'
After midnight
Out in the starlight
Just hoping you may be
Somewhere walkin'
After midnight
Searching for me.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The One and Only Elvis Presley - "Suspicious Minds"




We're caught in a trap
I can't walk out
Because I love you too much baby

Why can't you see
What you're doing to me
When you don't believe a word I say?

We can't go on together
With suspicious minds
And we can't build our dreams
On suspicious minds

So, if an old friend I know
Drops by to say hello
Would I still see suspicion in your eyes?

Here we go again
Asking where I've been
You can't see these tears are real
I'm crying

We can't go on together
With suspicious minds
And we can't build our dreams
On suspicious minds

Oh let our love survive
Or dry the tears from your eyes
Let's don't let a good thing die

When honey, you know
I've never lied to you
Mmm yeah, yeah

We're caught in a trap
I can't walk out
Because I love you too much baby

Why can't you see
What you're doing to me
When you don't believe a word I say?

We're caught in a trap
I can't walk out
Because I love you too much baby

Don't you know I'm caught in a trap
I can't walk out
Because I love you too much baby

Don't you know I'm caught in a trap
I can't walk out
Because I love you too much baby

Don't you know I'm caught in a trap
I can't walk out
Because I love you too much baby.

Thank you, Carmen Roman-Murray for recommending
this song in your fine workshop presentation,
Flex Day, Spring, 2011 - 1/14/11.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

"Songs for Learning English" from VOA.




This is the VOA Special English Education Report.

(MUSIC)

Songs teach language. Consider a song like "Tom's Diner" by Suzanne Vega. An American teaching English overseas once told us that students love it.

(MUSIC)

Recently we asked people on Facebook to suggest other songs that English learners might like.

Noemi Nito wrote: I'm one of those English students who love "Tom's Diner." I started learning English with "Lemon Tree" by Fool's Garden.

Another person, Asi Tambunan, suggested the song "God Only Knows" by Orianthi.

(MUSIC)

Gyongyi Jako wrote that ABBA's songs from Sweden are perfect for class work. Also, the Beatles and John Lennon, as well as Louis Armstrong's "Wonderful World."

Paul Cifuentes says Bob Marley's songs are amazing for teaching. But another teacher, Joseph Deka, says songs by Johnny Cash have always worked in his classroom. He says his students can hear the words, plus the songs often have stories. But he says young children love "C Is for Cookie" by Cookie Monster from the TV show "Sesame Street."

(MUSIC)

Aurelio Lourenco Costa Gusmao says he began to like English after his teacher played the Westlife song "I Have a Dream": That was eight years ago. I was in the seventh grade. And from that day on, my dream of improving my English skills became attached in my mind.

Teachers can use this song to convey the message to their students that they should have their own dream for the future.

Aurelio's story was no surprise to another commenter, Katie Kivenko: When you listen to your favorite songs, you feel emotionally high and it moves you to action.

And that's the VOA Special English Education Report. You can share other music suggestions for English learners at voaspecialenglish.com or on Facebook at VOA Learning English. I'm Steve Ember.

TOM'S DINER - SUZANNE VEGA



"Tom's Diner"

I am sitting
In the morning
At the diner
On the corner

I am waiting
At the counter
For the man
To pour the coffee

And he fills it
Only halfway
And before
I even argue

He is looking
Out the window
At somebody
Coming in

"It is always
Nice to see you"
Says the man
Behind the counter

To the woman
Who has come in
She is shaking
Her umbrella

And I look
The other way
As they are kissing
Their hellos

I'm pretending
Not to see them
Instead
I pour the milk

I open
Up the paper
There's a story
Of an actor

Who had died
While he was drinking
It was no one
I had heard of

And I'm turning
To the horoscope
And looking
For the funnies

When I'm feeling
Someone watching me
And so
I raise my head

There's a woman
On the outside
Looking inside
Does she see me?

No she does not
Really see me
Cause she sees
Her own reflection

And I'm trying
Not to notice
That she's hitching
Up her skirt

And while she's
Straightening her stockings
Her hair
Has gotten wet

Oh, this rain
It will continue
Through the morning
As I'm listening

To the bells
Of the cathedral
I am thinking
Of your voice...

And of the midnight picnic
Once upon a time
Before the rain began...

I finish up my coffee
It's time to catch the train.

Friday, January 7, 2011

"We Shall Overcome" - the anthem of the Civil
Rights Movement. Sung by Joan Baez.




We shall overcome,
We shall overcome,
We shall overcome, some day.

Oh, deep in my heart, I know that,
I do believe
We shall overcome, some day.

We shall be all right,
We shall be all right,
We shall be all right, some day.

Oh, deep in my heart, I know that,
I do believe
We shall overcome, some day.

We shall live in peace,
We shall live in peace,
We shall live in peace, some day.

Oh, deep in my heart, I know that,
I do believe
We shall overcome, some day.

We are not afraid, Oh, NO!!!
We are not afraid,
We are not afraid, TODAY

Oh, deep in my heart, I know that,
I do believe
We shall overcome, some day.

We shall overcome,
We shall overcome,
We shall overcome, some day.

Oh, deep in my heart, I know that,
I do believe
We shall overcome, some day.

Joan Baez once said that social justice was more important to her than singing.
The cause of social justice, however, couldn't have a better voice than the
beautiful singing voice of Joan Baez. Here is an article about her in Wikipedia.