Okay. so here’s the Second Installment in honor of National Protest Week (which just happens to be this week, if you didn’t know). This is a song that I wrote way back in 2008, probably around the springtime. It’s called We Don’t March.
This one is a pretty straight-forward, over-the-top, preachy protest song. I don’t sing it out live anymore, and hardly ever play it around the house, except that I’m still really in love with the melody. I stole it from an old Carter Family song (again) called We Will March Through the Streets of the City. You can check out the lyrics to that one here and see the similarities. Or just go listen to it.
For one reason or another I find it pretty easy to rewrite Carter Family songs, probably because the melodies are timeless, but the words aren’t. Maybe the words are too. Words never go away. Maybe it’s the ideas, but I don’t think they were trying to say anything different than what I’m trying to say. It just sounds that way because a lot of their songs have the word “jesus” in them, and the word “god” and “lord” and “pray” and those seem to be strange words for a songwriter these days. Either they mean something different in 2010 than they did back in 1925 or maybe we all understand a little less about the words or ourselves.
Anyway, I wrote We Don’t March kind of as an anti-protest protest song, although I’m not sure it turned out that way. There were a lot of immigration rallies going on back in 2006 and 2007, and then, either they fizzled out or everyone turned their attention to something else. And that puzzled me a little. I always thought, and was brought up to believe, that Americans never give up and that they always lend a hand to someone in need. I guess that hand’s gotta be the right one though. So I wrote this one, and I suppose I’m kinda shaking my finger at everyone else and at myself (even if I don’t say that in the song).
The recording was done live at the Elbo Room on July 21, 2008.