10 Songs for Occupy: “the movement’s in motion with mass militant poetry”

You know how I have to have a soundtrack for everything.  These are songs for the Occupy movement…some new,some old. Only 10. For now.

1. “Wake Up” by Rage Against The Machine

It’s hard to choose just one song from Rage Against the Machine to fit the movement. RATM was made for this.  “Wake Up” has been on my mind since the beginning of the Occupy movement but you take almost any song by Rage and it’ll speak on some level about corporate greed and economic disparity.

Zack de la Rocha also recently wrote an  Occupy Wall Street Poem  .“This poem is dedicated to the Occupy movement whose courage is changing the world. Stay Strong. We are winning.”

Also see: One Day As A Lion

And while we’re talking about Rage….

2. “World Wide Rebel Song”, The Nightwatchmen

Tom Morello’s Nightwatchmen project follows the same vein. “World Wide Rebel Song” could easily be an anthem for Occupy.

3. “Merchandise”, Fugazi

When we have nothing left to give 
There will be no reason for us to live 
But when we have nothing left to lose 
You will have nothing left to use 
We owe you nothing you have no control 
Merchandise keeps us in line 
Common sense says it’s by design 
What could a businessman ever want more 
than to have us sucking in his store 
We owe you nothing 
You have no control 
You are not what you own

4. “Mountains O’ Things” ,Tracy Chapman

Favorite song by Tracy Chapman and even more then “Talking About A Revolution” and “Fast Car”, this illustrates better how the “American dream”  has become a myth, where you work hard to get nothing and those who have everything have way too much of it ,usually by exploiting other human beings.

5. “Village Ghetto Land”, Stevie Wonder

Children play with rusted cars
Sores cover their hands
Politicians laugh and drink-drunk to all demands

That they seem to do.

6. “I Hate Banks”, Mojo Nixon

“Wall St can eat my meat!”

7. “The Man Don’t Give A Fuck”, Super Furry Animals

Lyricist Gruff Rhys refers to this song as a “multi-compass protest song”  against   “any organisation which you feel is terrorising you as an individual, anyone who’s cramping your style”. It fits especially well into the Occupy ethos.

8. “Fight With Tools”, The Flobots

There are many songs from the Flobots that are relevant but this jumps out at me lately  …. “There’s a war going on for your mind! Those who seek to occupy it will stop at nothing. The battlefield is everywhere; there is no sanctuary, there are no civilians. You have two choices: surrender or enlist.” So, occupy right back,people. Be the heroes we need.

9. “We Stand As One”, Joseph Arthur

There are a bunch of  people who have celebrity who have shown up at Occupy protests and even some who have just released songs ,advertising them to be “Anthems of the Movement”. I’m cynical. I think some of them are just looking for publicity.  Joseph Arthur (you may know his one song  “You’re So True” because it was in Shrek but his other stuff is good too..) seems sincere with this.

I like what he says here:

Protest songs should be open and somewhat naive
They can’t help but reference Bob Dylan referencing Woody Guthrie
They usually speak in somewhat general terms
And to be effective at all, they say things that even those coming from a similar space, may not fully agree with.
They are easy targets for the venom of music critics (because of all the reasons above)
And yet still sometimes
They are necessary
So with that I am happy to present you

We Stand As One.

I hope you love it
Or hate it
Or love to hate it
Or let yourself
Hate to love it
but either way,
In some small way,
I hope that it helps.

- Joseph Arthur

10. “Distraction”, Talib Kweli

Likewise, Talib Kwali  really does have only solidarity as his motive.

Say it

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s