Monkees – Last Train To Clarksville

When I first heard this song as an eight-year-old in 1975 I thought wow…The Monkees are singing about Clarksville Tennessee…right up the road from me! Well no they were not but ignorance is bliss. It ended up fitting Clarksville TN very well because Bobby Hart (co-writer) said the song was written as a protest song against Vietnam but they had to hide that because it was The Monkees.

The song is about a guy who gets drafted and goes to fight in the war. The train is taking him to an army base, and he knows he may die in Vietnam. At the end of the song, he states, “I don’t know if I’m ever coming home.”

Bobby Hart said: “We were just looking for a name that sounded good. There’s a little town in Northern Arizona I used to go through in the summer on the way to Oak Creek Canyon called Clarksdale. We were throwing out names, and when we got to Clarksdale, we thought Clarksville sounded even better. We didn’t know it at the time, [but] there is an Air Force base near the town of Clarksville, Tennessee – which would have fit the bill fine for the storyline. We couldn’t be too direct with The Monkees. We couldn’t really make a protest song out of it – we kind of snuck it in.”

Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, a songwriting team came up with many songs for The Monkees. They also wrote songs for Chubby Checker and Jay & the Americans.

The only Monkee to appear on this was Mickey Dolenz singing the lead vocal. The Monkees would get beat down by the music press because they didn’t play their own instruments. Some bands like the Beach Boys used the same session musicians. Peter Tork and Michael Nesmith were good musicians who played long before the Monkees. Later on, they DID play their own instruments starting with their 3rd album Headquarters and still had hits. As far as Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame…they should be inside the Hall. The Monkees influenced many young kids through more than just one generation.

Last Train To Clarksville peaked at #1 on the Billboard 100 in 1966. They followed this up with another number 1 with I’m A Believer.

 

 

From Songfacts

Bobby Hart got the idea for the lyrics when he turned on the radio and heard the end of The Beatles “Paperback Writer.” He thought Paul McCartney was singing “Take the last train,” and decided to use the line when he found out McCartney was actually singing “Paperback Writer.” Hart knew that The Monkees TV series was pitched as a music/comedy series in the spirit of The Beatles movie A Hard Day’s Night, so he knew emulating The Beatles would be a winner. To do that, he made sure to put a distinctive guitar riff in this song, and wrote in the “Oh No-No-No, Oh No-No-No” lyrics as a response to the Beatles famous “Yeah Yeah Yeah.”

The only Monkee to appear on this song was Micky Dolenz, who sang lead. The four members of the group were chosen from over 400 applicants to appear on a TV show based on The Beatles movie A Hard Day’s Night. The show was about a fictional band, so the members were chosen more for their looks and acting ability than for their musical talent.

Session musicians played on the Monkees albums, usually some combination of Glen Campbell, Leon Russell, James Burton, David Gates, Carol Kaye, Jim Gordon and Hal Blaine. According to the liner notes on the 1994 reissue of the album, however, members of a group called the Candy Store Prophets did the instrumental backing on this track at a session that took place July 25, 1966 at RCA Victor Studios in Hollywood. The Candy Store Prophets were Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart’s band, and included Boyce on acoustic guitar, Gerry McGee on electric guitar, Larry Taylor on bass and Billy Lewis on drums. Additional musicians on this track were Wayne Erwin and Louie Shelton on guitar, and Gene Estes on percussion.

Often reported as having played guitar on this track is Jesse Ed Davis, a Native American whose accomplishment included backing George Harrison at the Concert for Bangla Desh and playing the solo on Jackson Browne’s first hit, “Doctor My Eyes.”

This was The Monkees’ first single. It was released shortly after their TV show started on NBC and got a lot of publicity as a result. The Monkees followed it up with another hit, “I’m A Believer,” and had several more chart entries before their show was canceled in 1968. Eventually, the group wrote their own songs and played their own instruments.

When this song was released as a single, it went straight to #1, knocking “96 Tears” by ? & the Mysterians down to #2.

The Monkees took a lot of heat when they became successful recording artists without playing on their songs. Their drummer Micky Dolenz explained in The Wrecking Crew film: “I think there was a lot of resentment in the recording industry that we’d come out of nowhere, left field, and sort of just shot right to the top without having to kind of go through the ropes. The music industry back then was pretty crooked, and some people say even to this day. And I didn’t know at the time anything about the business end of it, but all of the sudden, the radio stations, the rack jobbers, the distributors, all these people that had a lot of power at that time – all of the sudden, they had to start playing the Monkees songs; they had to start racking them, they had to start distributing them. They had no choice. It was just so huge because of the television show. And that’s the first time anything like that had ever happened. And I think that probably created a lot of resentment.”

There is a certain lyrical dissonance in this song, as the upbeat music is contrasted with lyrics about being shipped off to war. Carol Kaye, who played bass on the session, told Songfacts, “The tempo of the tune was a good tempo. And that’s the main thing is to keep that tempo going. Back in the ’60s, you’re playing for people who dance. And if the tempo is 1-2-3-4, that’s a dance tempo. So you’re going to keep the tempo up, that’s important. So no, the mood of the song is not critical if the tempo is high, if the tempo is fast. If it’s slow, yeah, it’s kind of critical, and it depends upon how much is happening in the tune, too.”

One of the key elements of the song came out of sheer exhaustion. Micky Dolenz explains: “We were working 24/7. Normally, you do a TV series – eight, 10 hours a day – and go home. But after filming the show, I would go into the studio and sometimes record two or three lead vocals a night. So, it’s all a bit of a blur. That middle bit, there were words to that. Bobby Hart tells the story that I said, ‘It’s midnight, I have to be on the set at six. I can’t learn to sing that.’ He said, ‘Okay, just go ‘Doo-doo-doo-doo-doo-doo-doo-doo…’ You never know, if I’d sang all those words, it might not have worked.”

Last Train To Clarksville

Take the last train to Clarksville
And I’ll meet you at the station
You can be there by four-thirty
‘Cause I’ve made your reservation, don’t be slow
Oh, no, no, no
Oh, no, no, no

‘Cause I’m leaving in the morning
And I must see you again
We’ll have one more night together
Till the morning brings my train and I must go
Oh, no, no, no
Oh, no, no, no

And I don’t know if I’m ever coming home

Take the last train to Clarksville
I’ll be waiting at the station
We’ll have time for coffee-flavored kisses
And a bit of conversation
Oh, no, no, no
Oh, no, no, no

Take the last train to Clarksville
Now I must hang up the phone
I can’t hear you in this noisy railroad station all alone
I’m feeling low
Oh, no, no, no
Oh, no, no, no

And I don’t know if I’m ever coming home

Oh

Take the last train to Clarksville
And I’ll meet you at the station
You can be here by four-thirty
‘Cause I’ve made your reservation, don’t be slow
Oh, no, no, no
Oh, no, no, no

And I don’t know if I’m ever coming home
Take the last train to Clarksville
Take the last train to Clarksville
Take the last train to Clarksville
Take the last train to Clarksville

Beach Boys – Good Vibrations

This song is a masterpiece by Brian Wilson.

This was recorded over a two-month period using top Los Angeles session musicians. The Beach Boys didn’t play any instruments on the track. About 90 hours of studio time and 70 hours of tape were used, and at least 12 musicians played on the sessions. It’s hard to know whose performances ended up on the record, but some of the musicians involved were Glen Campbell (lead guitar), Carol Kaye (Electric Bass), Lyle Ritz (Standup Bass), Hal Blaine (drums), Larry Knechtel (organ) and Al de Lory (piano).

Brian Wilson has said that Capital Records thought the song was too long at 3:35 and had psychedelic overtones. Brian had to plead with them to release it. It peaked at #1 on the Billboard 100, #1 in the UK, #2 in Canada, and #1 in New Zealand in 1966. The song was written by Brian Wilson and Mike Love.

Brian Wilson: “My mother used to tell me about vibrations. I didn’t really understand too much of what she meant when I was a boy. It scared me, the word ‘vibrations’ – to think that invisible feelings existed. She also told me about dogs that would bark at some people, but wouldn’t bark at others, and so it came to pass that we talked about good vibrations.”

Ok… A Theremin was used in the song. I was always fascinated by this invention. This unique instrument was invented in 1920 by Russian  Léon Theremin. Jimmy Page would play one in the middle of Led Zeppelin concerts…Before we get to Good Vibrations lets see Léon Theremin play his invention.

 

From Songfacts

Brian Wilson called this song a “Pocket Symphony,” and experimented with it over the course of 17 recording sessions. At the time, it was the most expensive pop song ever recorded, costing about $50,000 to make.

Brian Wilson worked on this obsessively. At the time, he stayed home and wrote music while the rest of the band toured. Wilson was just starting a very bizarre phase of his life where he would spend long periods in bed and work in a sandbox. During this period, many considered him a genius because of the groundbreaking songs and recording techniques he came up with.

Brian Wilson played bass when the Beach Boys went on the road, but he brought in Carol Kaye to play bass guitar and Lyle Ritz to play upright bass on these sessions. Kaye recalled in a Songfacts interview, “He did the very first take on that with Ray Pohlman at Goldstar and scrapped that. And the other 12 dates I’m playing on – that’s 36 hours – he did not change that bass part all during that time. He changed all the rest of the music, he didn’t change the bass part. This is what he wrote. It was both bass players at that point – I’m playing the upper part and Lyle’s playing the lower part. If you listen to jazz, that’s the feel that he wrote.”

Beach Boys lead singer Mike Love wrote the lyrics for this song, which he told us were “basically a flowery poem.” The song seems to describe a really good acid trip, and while there is nothing specifically in the lyrics about drugs, Love admits that the psychedelic vibe was an influence on his words. Said Love: “It was this flowery power type of thing. Scott McKenzie wrote “If you’re going to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair,” and there were love-ins and all that kind of thing starting to go on.

So the track, the music of ‘Good Vibrations,’ was so unique and so psychedelic in itself. Just the instrumental part of it alone was such a departure from what we have done, like ‘Surfin’ USA’ and ‘California Girls’ and ‘I Get Around’ and ‘Fun, Fun, Fun,’ all of which I had a hand in writing. I wanted to do something that captured this feeling of the track and the times, but also could relate to people. Because I thought that the music was such a departure that who knows how well it would relate to Beach Boys fans at that time.

The one thing that I figured is an absolute perennial is the boy/girl relationship, the attraction between a guy and a girl. So I came up with that hook part at the chorus. It didn’t exist until I came up with that thought. Which is ‘I’m pickin’ up good vibrations, she’s giving me the excitations.’ ‘Excitations’ may or may not be in Webster’s Dictionary, however, it rhymes pretty well with ‘good vibrations.’ It was kind of a flower power poem to suit the times and complement the really amazingly unique track that Cousin Brian came up with.” (Here’s our full Mike Love interview.)

The unusual, high-pitched sound in this song was produced using an electro-theremin, which produces a similar sound to a traditional theremin, an instrument that uses electric current to produce sound (you don’t touch a theremin to play it, but move your hand across the electric field). The theremin was invented in 1919, but was very hard to play, and ended up being used mostly as a sound effects device.

Brian Wilson was familiar with the instrument, as it was used to create eerie sounds in low budget horror movies like The Day the Earth Stood Still and It Came from Outer Space. When he put cellos on “Good Vibrations,” he envisioned an unusual high frequency sound to go along with them, and he thought of the instrument. Wilson couldn’t track down a real theremin, but found an inventor named Paul Tanner who’d been a trombonist with the Glenn Miller Orchestra between 1938-’42. Tanner had developed a similar device with Bob Whitsell called an electro-theremin, which unlike a regular theremin, had no antennas. Tanner was brought in to play the device on the recording.

A huge challenge was re-creating the sound of the theremin for live performances. On the road, they used a modified synthesizer with a ribbon controller that Mike Love would play. In the ’90s, another inventor named Tom Polk created a device called a tannerin, which created a similar sound using a sliding knob and manual volume control. This was much easier to play, and Brian Wilson used it for his 1999 comeback tour.

When Wilson went back to work on the Smile album, he used the tannerin on his new version of “Good Vibrations,” which appeared on the 2004 album. The device was seen at the 2012 Grammy Awards when The Beach Boys performed the song.

Brian Wilson called this song “the summation of my musical vision. A harmonic convergence of imagination and talent, production values and craft, songwriting and spirituality.” He wrote it while on LSD, which explains why the song is the musical embodiment of a spectacular acid trip.

This was recorded in fragments – six different LA studios were used in the recording process, and tape from four of these studios was used in the final cut of the track. It was the first pop song pieced together from parts. In the next few years, The Beatles did a lot of this, as they took various unfinished songs they had written and combined them to make one. >>

Brian Wilson started writing this while recording The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds album. Once the album was finished, he focused on this song. Wilson was not happy about the poor reviews critics gave Pet Sounds, which today is considered a landmark record, so he worked even harder on this.

Most of The Beach Boys songs featured the vocals of either Mike Love or Brian Wilson, but Carl Wilson was the lead singer on this one. Beach Boy drummer Dennis Wilson was initially tagged to sing the lead vocal but eventually brother Carl was chosen. Dennis claimed to have played the organ on the “na na na na na na” build up. >>

This was the beginning of what was going to be an album called Smile. Wilson recorded the album in about 50 sessions, but it was never released. Considered a “lost album,” Wilson finally finished it in 2004. When he played the album on tour that year, “Good Vibrations” got a rousing response.

This was the last US #1 hit for The Beach Boys until “Kokomo” went to #1 22 years later, setting the record for longest gap between #1 hits on the Hot 100. This record was broken by Cher when “Believe” hit #1 in 1999, 25 years after her previous chart-topper,

In the ’80s, Sunkist used this song in popular commercials for their orange soda (“I’m drinking up good vibrations, Sunkist orange soda taste sensation…”). The vocalist on these spots was Jim Peterik, who was working as a jingle singer at the time but would later form Survivor and co-write all of their hits, including “Eye of the Tiger.” Peterik and Brian Wilson would later cross paths when they worked together on the Beach Boys comeback song “That’s Why God Made the Radio.”

In 2005, a Broadway musical called Good Vibrations opened. The show was based on Beach Boys songs, but failed to find an audience; it closed less than three months later.

Brian Wilson was the only songwriter credited on this track until a 1994 lawsuit awarded Mike Love composer credit for his contributions to the lyrics on this and 34 other Beach Boys songs. Love maintains that Murry Wilson (Brian’s father), handled the publishing details and screwed him out of the songwriting credits.

Todd Rundgren covered this in 1976 on his Faithful album. True to the album’s name, Todd went to great lengths to reproduce every vocal and instrumental aspect of the song (along with several other ’60s hits). Rundgren’s almost-exact copy was a minor hit single on its own, reaching #34 US

Good Vibrations

I-I love the colorful clothes she wears
And the way the sunlight plays upon her hair
I hear the sound of a gentle word
On the wind that lifts her perfume through the air

I’m pickin’ up good vibrations
She’s giving me the excitations (oom bop bop)
I’m pickin’ up good vibrations (good vibrations, oom bop bop)
She’s giving me the excitations (excitations, oom bop bop)
I’m pickin’ up good vibrations (oom bop bop)
She’s giving me the excitations (excitations, oom bop bop)
I’m pickin’ up good vibrations (oom bop bop)
She’s giving me the excitations (excitations)

Close my eyes, she’s somehow closer now
Softly smile, I know she must be kind
When I look in her eyes
She goes with me to a blossom world

I’m pickin’ up good vibrations
She’s giving me excitations (oom bop bop)
I’m pickin’ up good vibrations (good vibrations, oom bop bop)
She’s giving me excitations (excitations, oom bop bop)
Good, good, good, good vibrations (oom bop bop)
She’s giving me excitations (excitations, oom bop bop)
Good, good, good, good vibrations (oom bop bop)
She’s giving me excitations (excitations)

Ah, ah, my my, what elation
I don’t know where but she sends me there
Oh, my my, what a sensation
Oh, my my, what elation
Oh, my my, what

Gotta keep those lovin’ good vibrations a-happenin’ with her
Gotta keep those lovin’ good vibrations a-happenin’ with her
Gotta keep those lovin’ good vibrations a-happenin’

(Ahh)

Good, good, good, good vibrations (oom bop bop)
She’s giving me the excitations (excitations, oom bop bop)
I’m pickin’ up good vibrations

Na na na na na, na na na
Na na na na na, na na na (bop bop-bop-bop-bop, bop)
Do do do do do, do do do (bop bop-bop-bop-bop, bop)
Do do do do do, do do do (bop bop-bop-bop-bop, bop)

Wacky Races

I would watch this on those magical Saturday mornings when the cartoons last until around noon. Then out the door, I would go but from 7am – noon it was a kids world.

Wacky Races is about a series of car competitions where eleven racers race in different location all over North America. The story revolves around Dick Dastardly and his dog Muttley who is determined to cheat just to win the game but they always lose every time. Wacky Races was produced by Hanna-Barbera and aired from 1968 to 1970.

Inspired by the 1965 film The Great Race the cartoon features eleven teams of racers competing to win the title of “World’s Wackiest Racer.” The roster of competitors included: Dick Dastardly and Muttley, The Slag Brothers, The Gruesome Twosome, Professor Pat Pending, The Red Max, Penelope Pitstop, Sergeant Blast and Private Meekly, The Ant Hill Mob, Lazy Luke, and Blubber Bear, Peter Perfect, and Rufus Ruffcut and Sawtooth.

Image result for wacky races

 

The Honeybus – I Can’t Let Maggie Go

My 19-year-old son came in tonight and said a quick Hi Dad…he then muttered: “I Can’t Let Maggie Go… Honeybus.” I, of course, asked him what the hell he was talking about. He told me it was a song by a band named Honeybus (I thought it was a new band) and to listen to it because he couldn’t get it out of his head. I didn’t ask him where he heard this song but it stuck with me …late 60s light pop.

The band formed in London in 1967. After hitting with this song they were on the front page of music magazines  Disc and Music Echo. The song peaked at #8 in the UK in 1968…but this would be their only hit.

I Can’t Let Maggie Go

She makes me laugh, she makes me cry, with a twinkle of her eye
She flies like a bird in the sky
She flies like a bird and I wish that she was mine
She flies like a bird, oh me, oh my
I see her sigh
Now I know, I can’t let Maggie go

We walk here and we walk there
People stop and people stare
‘Cause she flies like a bird in the sky
She flies like a bird and I wish that she was mine
She flies like a bird, oh me, oh my
I see her sigh
Now I know, I can’t let Maggie go

She flies like a bird in the sky
She flies like a bird and I wish that she was mine
She flies like a bird, oh me, oh my
I see her sigh
Now I know, I can’t let Maggie go

Oh yes, she flies like a bird in the sky
She flies like a bird and I wish that she
was mine (Oh yes, I wish that she was mine)
She flies like a bird, oh me, oh my
I see her sigh
Now I know, I can’t let Maggie go

Jackie Wilson – (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher And Higher

There are so many versions of this song out there and I like many of them… its that good of song. I couldn’t decide on which version so I said what the hell… let’s do another version also. Rita Coolidge’s version is the other song I covered today.

This was originally recorded by the vocal group The Dells. It was written by the blind songwriter and producer from Chicago, Raynard Miner, who worked on the original version with Billy Davis of Chess Records and producer Carl Smith.

Davis allowed another songwriter in the Chess stable, Gary Jackson, to make some changes and pitch the song, with Davis removed from the credits. Jackson got the song to Brunswick Records, and they recorded it with their artist Jackie Wilson before The Dells could release their version.

A publishing deal for the song was reached with Brunswick after Chess producer/A&R head, Billy Davis intervened. Writing credits were agreed with Smith, Miner, Jackson and Billy Davis all named. Later, Davis removed his credit and BMI now lists the song as by the three other writers.

The song peaked at #6 on the Billboard 100 in 1967.

From Songfacts

The Dells version is titled “Higher And Higher” and has the refrain, “My love keeps on growing higher and higher.”

Wilson recorded this in Chicago with members of The Funk Brothers, who were Motown’s house band. As detailed in the documentary Standing In The Shadows Of Motown, these musicians were responsible for the distinctive Motown sound, but they didn’t make much money and moonlighted by playing sessions for artists like Wilson. Playing on this track were bassist James Jamerson, drummer Richard “Pistol” Allen, guitarist Robert White, and keyboardist Johnny Griffith.

This song first charted in the UK in 1969, peaking at #11, and then again when it was re-issued in 1975 and 1987.

A cover version by Rita Coolidge in 1977 reached US #2. It was a much slower version and the title was amended slightly to “(Your Love Has Lifted Me) Higher And Higher.”

From Songfacts

The Dells version is titled “Higher And Higher” and has the refrain, “My love keeps on growing higher and higher.”

Wilson recorded this in Chicago with members of The Funk Brothers, who were Motown’s house band. As detailed in the documentary Standing In The Shadows Of Motown, these musicians were responsible for the distinctive Motown sound, but they didn’t make much money and moonlighted by playing sessions for artists like Wilson. Playing on this track were bassist James Jamerson, drummer Richard “Pistol” Allen, guitarist Robert White, and keyboardist Johnny Griffith.

This song first charted in the UK in 1969, peaking at #11, and then again when it was re-issued in 1975 and 1987.

A cover version by Rita Coolidge in 1977 reached US #2. It was a much slower version and the title was amended slightly to “(Your Love Has Lifted Me) Higher And Higher.”

(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher And Higher

Your love, lifting me higher
Than I’ve ever been lifted before
So keep it it up
Quench my desire
And I’ll be at your side, forever more

You know your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on lifting (love keeps lifting me)
Higher (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
I said your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on (love keeps lifting me)
Lifting me (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
Now listen

Now once, I was down-hearted
Disappointment, was my closest friend
But then you, came and it soon departed
And you know he never
Showed his face again

That’s why your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on lifting (love keeps lifting me)
Higher (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
I said your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on (love keeps lifting me)
Lifting me (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)

I’m so glad, I’ve finally found you
Yes that one, in a million girls
And I whip, my loving arms around you
I can stand up, and face the world

Let me tell ya, your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on lifting (love keeps lifting me)
Higher (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
I said your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on (love keeps lifting me)
Lifting me (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)

Now sock it to me
Hold me, the other woman
Keep my love going
Higher and higher
I said keep on lifting
Lift me up mama
Keep on lifting me
Higher and higher

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/(Your_Love_Keeps_Lifting_Me)_Higher_and_Higher

 

Purina Chuckwagon Commercials

I loved these commercials when I was a kid. I wasn’t allowed to have a dog in the house (which is probably why I’ve had two Saint Bernard house dogs). Some poor dog would be bewildered by a miniature chuck wagon, then scurries through the home and into the kitchen cabinet or tv after it.

In 1967, Purina rolled out “Chuck Wagon” as their latest dog food innovation. Packaged as dry dog food, adding warm water would rehydrate the serving to some extent, as well as causing the meal to produce its own gravy

Now… this was hard to believe but in 1983 Atari released a video game based on this commercial called “Chase the Chuckwagon”

Image result for atari Chase the Chuck Wagon

 

Rolling Stones – Salt Of The Earth

Hope everyone had a great long weekend.

Let’s drink to the hard-working people
Let’s drink to the lowly of birth
Raise your glass to the good and the evil
Let’s drink to the salt of the earth

This song is on the great album Beggars Banquet. I had this album and it remains one of my favorite albums by the Stones. There is not a bad song on the LP. This one and Prodigal Son I always liked. Beggars Banquet peaked at #5 on the Billboard album charts in 1969.

Keith and Mick Jagger both sing on this with the  Los Angeles Watts Street Gospel Choir singing background…Nicky Hopkins is on piano.

The title refers to the working class…they are “The salt of the Earth.” Jagger later said: “The song is total cynicism. I’m saying those people haven’t any power and they never will have.” 

From Songfacts

This was one of Keith Richards’ first lead vocal performances for The Stones (his first was on “Something Happened To Me Yesterday” from Between The Buttons). 

The Stones played this on Rock and Roll Circus, a British TV special The Stones taped in 1968 but never aired because they were upstaged by other acts on the show. A series of musical acts and circus performances, it was released on video in 1995.

The Stones performed this in Atlantic City in 1989 with Axl Rose and Izzy Stradlin of Guns N’ Roses on vocals.

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards performed this at the 2001 “Concert For New York,” which honored the rescue workers, cops, and firefighters in New York City after the World Trade Center disaster.

Salt Of The Earth

Let’s drink to the hard working people
Let’s drink to the lowly of birth
Raise your glass to the good and the evil
Let’s drink to the salt of the earth

Say a prayer for the common foot soldier
Spare a thought for his back breaking work
Say a prayer for his wife and his children
Who burn the fires and who still till the earth

And when I search a faceless crowd
A swirling mass of gray and
Black and white
They don’t look real to me
In fact, they look so strange

Raise your glass to the hard working people
Let’s drink to the uncounted heads
Let’s think of the wavering millions
Who need leaders but get gamblers instead

Spare a thought for the stay-at-home voter
His empty eyes gaze at strange beauty shows
And a parade of the gray suited grafters
A choice of cancer or polio

And when I look in the faceless crowd
A swirling mass of grays and
Black and white
They don’t look real to me
Or don’t they look so strange

Let’s drink to the hard working people
Let’s think of the lowly of birth
Spare a thought for the rag taggy people
Let’s drink to the salt of the earth

Let’s drink to the hard working people
Let’s drink to the salt of the earth
Let’s drink to the two thousand million
Let’s think of the humble of birth