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Songs about hunger

GUEST,jrschaap@earthlink.net 29 Oct 01 - 10:44 PM
53 29 Oct 01 - 11:09 PM
Stewart 29 Oct 01 - 11:21 PM
Stewie 30 Oct 01 - 01:14 AM
Blackcatter 30 Oct 01 - 01:17 AM
Stewie 30 Oct 01 - 01:21 AM
Stewie 30 Oct 01 - 01:37 AM
Dead Horse 30 Oct 01 - 07:41 AM
SharonA 30 Oct 01 - 11:34 AM
GUEST,Mary in KY sans cookie 30 Oct 01 - 09:33 PM
Mrrzy 31 Oct 01 - 01:44 PM
Mooh 31 Oct 01 - 03:35 PM
SINSULL 31 Oct 01 - 04:12 PM
MMario 31 Oct 01 - 04:26 PM
Uncle_DaveO 31 Oct 01 - 04:29 PM
SharonA 31 Oct 01 - 05:27 PM
GUEST 31 Oct 01 - 05:51 PM
Snuffy 31 Oct 01 - 06:16 PM
SharonA 31 Oct 01 - 06:20 PM
Herga Kitty 31 Oct 01 - 06:21 PM
Allan C. 31 Oct 01 - 06:35 PM
jacko@nz 31 Oct 01 - 08:01 PM
Muggletonian 31 Oct 01 - 08:34 PM
jacko@nz 31 Oct 01 - 08:46 PM
jacko@nz 31 Oct 01 - 08:49 PM
Burke 01 Nov 01 - 04:57 PM
Susanne (skw) 12 Dec 01 - 09:13 PM
Susanne (skw) 12 Dec 01 - 09:23 PM
GUEST 13 Dec 01 - 02:02 PM
Linda Allen 13 Dec 01 - 03:07 PM
GUEST,Desdemona 13 Dec 01 - 05:03 PM
Rollo 13 Dec 01 - 08:42 PM
GUEST,mkebenn@work 14 Dec 01 - 06:35 PM
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Subject: Songs about hunger
From: GUEST,jrschaap@earthlink.net
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 10:44 PM

Hi all,

I am participating in the creation of an Interfaith Thanksgiving service, and would like to include a few songs about hunger.

1. Does anything generally related to hunger come to mind? 2. Any songs dealing specifically with the Irish famine?

Thanks in advance for your assistance.

J.R. Schaa


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: 53
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 11:09 PM

there's a lot of country songs that talk about hunger but i can't think of the names, maybe you should check in cowpie, for they have a lot of country song lyrics. BOB


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Subject: DTADD: I Cannot Sleep (Malvina Reynolds)
From: Stewart
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 11:21 PM

I CANNOT SLEEP
(Malvina Reynolds)

I cannot sleep for thinking of the children,
Who cannot sleep, gone supperless to bed.
I cannot sleep for thinking of the young ones,
Who roam the roads, no place to lay their heads.

If there were one, it would be cause to wonder,
If there were one, it would be cause to weep.
But they are numbered in too many thousands,
And for each one, I cannot sleep.

The stores are full, the bins are overflowing,
In sight of food, the hungry children wait.
And on the roads the young begin to wander,
Because at home, there's nothing on their plate.

If there were one...

We will not sleep, my sisters from the mill line,
We will not sleep, my brothers from the plow,
Until we've stored the wealth we have created
Within the lives of those who hunger now.

If there were one...
....
Til there are none, we will not sleep.

Sung by Rosalie Sorrels on her CD No Closing Chord.

Cheers, S. in Seattle


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Stewie
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 01:14 AM

The Hungry Child

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Blackcatter
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 01:17 AM

"Fields of Athenry" deals with the imprisonment and transportation aspect of the Irish Famine.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Stewie
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 01:21 AM

There is also this one:

Famime Song (The praties they grow small)

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Stewie
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 01:37 AM

Another one just came to mind - Sarah Gunning's poignant 'Dreadful Memories' about hard times in the Kentucky coal fields. I always thought Sarah was the author, but the DT attributes it to someone else. Archie Green credits her with it in his 'Only A Miner'. Set to the gospel hymn 'Precious Memories'.

Dreadful Memories

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Dead Horse
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 07:41 AM

Song about starvation in Korea:- How Much Is That Doggie In The Window?


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Subject: DTADD: The Shortest Story (Harry Chapin)
From: SharonA
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 11:34 AM

"Kilkelly" mentions it in passing.

There's a powerful one by Harry Chapin that comes to mind, and I've posted it below. Chapin was a strong activist fighting world hunger.

The Shortest Story
by Harry Chapin

I am born today, the sun burns its promise in my eyes;
Mama strikes me and I draw a breath and cry.
Above me a cloud softly tumbles through the sky;
I am glad to be alive.

It is me seventh day, I taste the hunger and I cry;
my brother and sister cling to Mama's side.
She squeezes her breast, but it has nothing to provide;
someone weeps, I fall asleep.

It is twenty days today, Mama does not hold me anymore;
I open my mouth but I am too weak to cry.
Above me a bird slowly crawls across the sky;
why is there nothing now to do but die?

© Copyright 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 The Harry Chapin Archive. All rights reserved.

Link to the Harry Chapin website for more info: harrychapin.com


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: GUEST,Mary in KY sans cookie
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 09:33 PM

Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah has the words "feed me til I want no more"


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Mrrzy
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 01:44 PM

There's a line in the one about Monsignor Horan about "You were born in the county of green, white and red / where millions of people from famine they fled.."

And, although I haven't run across it in a song, my Mom said that while she was starving in Auschwitz, they would talk about their "dream food" and the best thing any of them could think of was a some cold leftover boiled potato... on a slice of bread.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Mooh
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 03:35 PM

There's the World Hunger Grace which I posted here some time ago. Said or sung, it's appropriate.

Peace, Mooh.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: SINSULL
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 04:12 PM

Hard Times, Come Again No More?
Faded Coat Of Blue - Civil War, starving soldier.
One Meatball
Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: MMario
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 04:26 PM

don Meixner's A Mother's Kiss

very powerful - tune: tramps and hawkers.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 04:29 PM

Not about actual starvation, but about the boring repetitive quality of one's diet on a very restricted income, one of my favorite songs is "Beans, Bacon and Gravy", which is in the DT. I recommend it.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: SharonA
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 05:27 PM

"Food, Glorious Food" from the musical Oliver! (bearing in mind that it was sung by children who weren't being given proper food or enough of it).


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: GUEST
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 05:51 PM

Blue Diamond Mine ("Well, let's go downtown, boys and hang around,/Well, maybe things ain't so bad./ Or you go down home and they meet you at the door,/Sayin' 'What did you bring me, dad?'")

State of Arkansas--"His bread it was corn dodger, and his meat I could not chaw,/ And he charged me half a dollar in the state of Arkansas."

CC


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Snuffy
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 06:16 PM

Eatin Goober Peas
Hard Crackers Come Again No More


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: SharonA
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 06:20 PM

THREE GRAINS OF CORN

THAT WAS THE PRESIDENT AND THAT WAS THE MAN (Phil Ochs)

Parodies: SASKATCHEWAN, DAKOTA LAND and SWEET DAKOTA LAND

OLD HUNDRED

MY OKLAHOMA HOME, IT BLOWED AWAY (Bill and Sis Cunningham)

MINER'S PRAYER

HUNGRY HASH HOUSE

HUNGER IN THE AIR

DURHAM LOCKOUT (Tommy Armstrong)


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Subject: DTADD: The Cottiers (Penni McClaren Walker)
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 06:21 PM

The Cottiers
(Penni McClaren Walker) - about the Irish potato famine.

Oh the Cottiers and their sons, fathers, mothers, wives and daughters
Are walking to the shore, there's nothing left on land
And the ones they left behind, with legs too weak to carry,
Are dying in their thousands for want of England's hand.

And where are the owners, whose backs we all bent?
With nothing to barter, so can't pay our rent
Lost our living, lost our land, our faith in fellow man
Watch the ragged Cottier band walk to shore.

Turn to see our houses burn, turn to see the embers die,
Everything we lived for, everything we owned
Echoes of our families still float across the hillside
This blight has left us wanting through no fault of our own
And where are the owners, their torches and flames?
You can lock all your doors but we know all your names
As we leave our blackened fields, Death is baying at our heels
Watch the ragged Cottier band walk to shore.

And the Cottiers and their sons, fathers, mothers, wives
and daughters
Are walking to the shore, there's nothing left on land
And the ones they left behind with legs too weak to carry
Are dying in their thousands for want of England's hand
And where are the owners, their torches and flames?
You can lock all your doors, but we know all your names
As we leave our blackened fields, Death is baying at our heels
Watch the ragged Cottier band walk to shore

Hear the politicians' promises and wait for their resolving
But the silos are still empty, you ignore our dying pleas
And they wrote off twenty million for the slaves across the water
And we got fifty thousand for all of Ireland's needs
And where are the owners, their heads bowed in shame?
You don't hear our voices, you don't know our names
When you've nothing in your belly you've no stomach for a fight
Watch the ragged Cottier band walk to shore

And the Cottiers and their sons, fathers, mothers. wives and daughters
Are walking to the shore, there's nothing left on land
And the ones they left behind, with legs too weak to carry
Are dying in their thousands for want of England's hand
And where are the owners, their heads bowed in shame?
They don't hear our voices, they don't know our names
When you've nothing in your belly, you've no stomach for a fight
Watch the ragged Cottier band walk to shore.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Allan C.
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 06:35 PM

He stood beside my window,
He looked at me and he said,
"I am so tired and hungry,
Give me a bite of your bread."

LONG CHAIN ON


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: jacko@nz
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 08:01 PM

'Have You Seen The Children' by Eric Bogle, I think

Jack


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Muggletonian
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 08:34 PM

Thanks for all the great suggestions. I just posted another request, for the lyrics to the Shaker Hymn "I Hunger and Thirst." Deals more with spiritual hunger than physical, but still seems relevant.

Many thanks again, and please keep 'em coming!

Cheers, JRS


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: jacko@nz
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 08:46 PM

Find the children here


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: jacko@nz
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 08:49 PM

Oops. This time...here
I hope....


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Burke
Date: 01 Nov 01 - 04:57 PM

Isaac Watts Hymns Book I, Hymn 9 The Sacred Harp uses jus the 1st 2 verses with the William Billings Tune: Vermont

I have a hymnal that Bread for the World put out years ago for the kind of service you mention. I have it at home (at work now) & will look at it when I get home. My recollection is that it uses familiar tunes with new words. Maybe you can find a copy laying around in a corner somewhere at church.


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Subject: LYR ADD: Some Hae Meat
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 09:13 PM

This one doesn't seem to be in the DT. The chorus is Robert Burns' Selkirk Grace.

SOME HAE MEAT
(Robert Burns / Ian Walker)

Chorus:
Some hae meat and cannae eat
Some would eat that want it
But we hae meat and we can eat
Sae let the Lord be thankit

From my armchair window on this world
Before my eyes appearing
Foods for breakfasts, dinners, teas
For in between meals feeding

From my armchair window on this world
I see butter mountains rising
And fish thrown back into the sea
And leaders compromising

And then I see one bowl of rice
A child's eye staring at me
With feeble bones life never owned
Reaching out to touch me

Just down the road a million miles Our children they are crying Too weak to eat they've got no meat They spend their living dying


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 09:23 PM

Oops! This should read

Just down the road a million miles
Our children they are crying
Too weak to eat they've got no meat
They spend their living dying


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Subject: Lyr Add: SKIBBEREEN
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 02:02 PM

Actually, what's amazing about many Irish famine songs is the fact that they don't say more about the famine itself. Mick Moloney has suggested that the wound is so deep and the trauma and shame so great that there has been a massive denial. Otherwise, given the amount of songs about (say) the Napoleonic wars, you'd expect hundreds about the famine.

Take a look at Skibberreen. The description of the famine itself is most cursory. Instead, it talks about the unwillingness of the landlords to address the famine, and their oppression of the already suffering people.

Here are the lyrics

Oh father dear, I oft-times hear you speak of Erin's isle
Her lofty hills, her valleys green, her mountains rude and wild
They say she is a lovely land wherein a saint might dwell
So why did you abandon her, the reason to me tell.

Oh son, I loved my native land with energy and pride
Till a blight came o'er the praties; my sheep, my cattle died
My rent and taxes went unpaid, I could not them redeem
And that's the cruel reason why I left old Skibbereen.

Oh well do I remember that bleak December day
The landlord and the sheriff came to take us all away
They set my roof on fire with their cursed English spleen
I heaved a sigh and bade goodbye to dear old Skibbereen.

Your mother too, God rest her soul, fell on the stony ground
She fainted in her anguish seeing desolation 'round
She never rose but passed away from life to immortal dream
She found a quiet grave, me boy, in dear old Skibbereen.

And you were only two years old and feeble was your frame
I could not leave you with my friends for you bore your father's name
I wrapped you in my cóta mór in the dead of night unseen
I heaved a sigh and bade goodbye to dear old Skibbereen.

Oh father dear, the day will come when in answer to the call
All Irish men of freedom stern will rally one and all
I'll be the man to lead the band beneath the flag of green
And loud and clear we'll raise the cheer, Revenge for Skibbereen!


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Subject: ADD: On Hunger (Linda Allen)
From: Linda Allen
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 03:07 PM

Wow! What great contributions! I do have one to add, from my first recording, Mama Wanted To Be A Rainbow Dancer. It's called On Hunger -- here it is:

On Hunger
(Linda Allen, ©1982)

I'm up in the morning, the baby is crying for milk
I nurse her, and then take the baby food down from the shelf
I notice the brand, I meant to boycott that one
But the baby is hungry, guess the damage is done

And Oh, what a hard thing is life

African mother, she rocks the small babe in her arms
The baby won't waken, she knows that another child's gone
The nurse gave her pills so the milk would not flow
But formula money ran out long ago

And, oh, how precious is life

I stand in our garden, I feel the good earth through my toes
Didn't get to the beans and they're rotting, but that's how it goes
No time to make lunch, too crazy a day
I'll pick up some burgers, get the kids on the way

Oh, what a hard thing is life

South American mother, she works in her garden alone
She takes what she can for tomorrow she'll have to move on
Her garden's been sold for a big cattle ranch
For American hamburgers, Northwestern branch

And oh, how fragile is life

The house seems too small when the children are noisy like this
Big house in the country - room just to run would be bliss
But for now I'll fix supper, don't waste any, girls
Remember the hungry young ones of the world

And oh, what a hard thing is life

Refugee mother, she sits on the dirt that's her floor
And 8,000 more people live just outside her rag door
Her daughters are silent - strange silence to bear
Their round little bellies, their hollow-eyed stare

And oh, how cruel is life
And oh, what a hard thing is life


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: GUEST,Desdemona
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 05:03 PM

I'm thinking of "The Ditchley Carol" (which appears on Waterson-Carthy's "Broken Ground"), and "Poor Frozen Out Gardeners", which can be found on Magpie Lane's excellent "Wassail!"


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: Rollo
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 08:42 PM

There are two very angry songs that came to my mind the very moment I read the thread title.

"Shortenin' bread" - this dramatic story about "mama's li'l chillen" dying with hunger and mamma being jailed because she made bread from her master's corn in my opinion is a little masterpiece of folk lyrics.

"Pie in the sky" - a slap into the face of church and salvation army.

Kinda revolution spirited, these two. But that might be the right spirit talking about rich and poor on christmas. Think about it.


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Subject: RE: Songs about hunger
From: GUEST,mkebenn@work
Date: 14 Dec 01 - 06:35 PM

John Stewart's haunting "Botswana"
" But I can see the children,
the children in Botswana,
I can see the children
with the flies in their eyes."
shiver, Mike


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