Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Independence Day!

A happy 233rd birthday to this tired old country of ours. To Uncle Sam, Columbia, their 3 kids (Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Happiness) standing here amongst the amber waves of grain, beneath their purple mountains majesty, stretching from sea to shining sea!

Yes, she's tired and yes she's got some miles on her, but she still looks damn good.

As far as a National Anthem?

I think "The Star Spangled Banner" is a better poem than it is a song, it's too hard to sing.

"God Bless America"? I like the sentiment and Kate Smith could belt the hell out of it, but I take umbrage to the idea we have to seek protection from a higher power instead of getting done what needs to be done on our own. That's for 12 step programs, not us of the "good ol' American ingenuity".

I still favor "This Land is Your Land". Some say it's a cynical view from a leftist, satirizing it's surface meaning. I say horseshit. I think Woody is saying this country is great, but it's got some real troubles. But because it's great, we can fix those troubles. It's worth fixing. It's worth working on. It's worth doing.

Here's a couple versions of the song for you to judge by yourselves.

Here's a montage video with Woody himself warbling away these respectful, insightful, funny and true lyrics.

And here's a more recent video of Woody's son Arlo singing the song with Pete Seeger helping along. Just check out ol' Pete flailing on that banjo and raising his voice so all can hear, like he just heard the song for the first time. Great stuff.

Happy birthday America. And when I say that I mean all of you who are America. They said you would never make it. Look at you go.

1 comment:

Joe Hinman said...

great! should have known you would have good taste in music. I love Arlo and Woody and the 60d (except for the war).

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