Winter Revolution: A Holiday Playlist for the Rest of Us

5 12 2010

5. Flobots – “Whip$ and Chain$”

Why it’s on the list… The chorus of this song references the death of Walmart employee Jdimytai Damour, who died after being trampled beneath shoppers during a “Black Friday” sale in November 2008.  (Some of the shoppers continued hunting for bargains after the literally “door-busting” event left Damour dying on the ground.) If the line sounds familiar, it may be because it’s an homage to Bob Dylan’s “Who Killed Davey Moore.”

The song links his death with a lot of other excesses of capitalism, including wars of aggression and the exploitation of labor at home and abroad. Very apropos for the season.

Selected lyrics:

“Who killed Jdimytai Damour?/

Why and what’s the reason for?/

Who starts homicidal wars?/

Rich man poor man either or?/

Who shows us what we knead?/

Who’s got the bread for the luxuries?/

Who told us it’s ingrained?/

We who hold these whips and chains…

Simon Williams I Wonder Man/

Just how did ‘our’ oil get under their sand?/

And how did ‘our’ homes get onto their land?/

And how did ‘our’ foes get guns in their hands?/

…1910 all the factory workers said/

Yes we can demand a weekend/

If we can get The Man to weaken/

So if you’re ready than send a beacon

To be continued and to begin…”



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One response

8 12 2010

Great playlist! And I agree that the “Praise Santa” segment from Boondocks is pretty great! “Revolution” as a Christmas selection is a great idea, too…

I’d throw in some classics like “Sweet Little Jesus Boy” (simple yet profound) and “O Holy Night” (bit of abolitionist commentary).

I’ve been listening to a classical rendition (from the London Philharmonic) of Messiah over the last few holiday seasons. There’s some good stuff that Jones didn’t include. I had “Thou shalt break them” (from Ps. 2, follows the verses sung in “Why do the nations rage…”) stuck in my head last week. And of course, there’s the famous “Hallelujah Chorus”: “The kingdom of this world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ…” Hallelujah, indeed…

Have you heard Beck’s “Little Drum Machine Boy”? Hilarious and fun. 🙂

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