folkVOTE Featured Song and Video September 2

Today I Get to Go and Cast a Vote © David Roth  www.davidrothmusic.com

Today I got to go and cast a vote
All privileged and loaded up with hope
I will never take this right for granted, nope
Today I got to go and cast a vote

I voted for a guy I know named Dan
But it wasn’t just because I know him, he’s an honest man
He does the things he says that he will do
How many politicians do you know for whom that’s true?

It’s my observation that candidates will say the things
They think that their constituents want to hear
In order to get voted in, they make up stuff, accuse and spin
Misinform, exaggerate, and smear

What about the rest of us, the ones who pay their salaries
Left scratching our collective heads for lack of
Decent health insurance, Wall Street bungling,
Headline jumbling, sound bite chewing venom spewing,
Let’s agree to disagree and have a conversation

Today I get to go and cast a vote
I hope the votes are counted fairly in those envelopes
I will never take this right for granted, nope
Today I got to go and cast a vote

I’m not up for any office, but if pressed I’d make a platform
On which I could stand and there’d be lots of room for you
How ‘bout this, take care of business here at home and
With what’s left we’ll go around the world and do the best that we can do

Then I’d figure out how we could rout about three trillion dollars
Pull it out of fighting, how ‘bout housing, education
Weaning off of fossil fuel, some environment protection,
Love and let love, we’ve got a big election…

I’d add a dose of foresight, unlike many corporations seeking
Short-term profit, making money quickly as they can
On my platform there’d be room for long term planning,
Nonsense banning, budgets spanning lifetimes so our kids will have a chance

But I’m not running, I’m just voting, I’ll be toting my agenda
More addenda coming as we fashion our new visions
Starting here and now with Dan, I still believe it, yes we can
With powerful and personal decisions

Today I get to go and cast a vote
All privileged and loaded up with hope
I will never take this right for granted, nope
Today I got to go and cast a vote
Other countries in the world please take note

Today I got to go and cast a vote

folkVOTE Featured Song and Video August 28

The Woman’s Suffrage Song

©2020 words & music by Sharleen Leahey • August Echo Music / BMI

Sharleen Leahey performs “The Woman Suffrage Song” at the 4th Annual Women’s Work Concert at the Howland Arts Center in Beacon, NY. The song chronicles the 72-year-long struggle American women waged for the right to vote. This year we celebrate the Centennial of the passage of the 19th amendment on August 26, 1920. in celebration of the Centennial!

FREE DOWNLOAD
“The Woman’s Suffrage Song”
available on Sharleen’s 3rd CD “For the 99” available online at:
https://www.rumorsofpeace.net/the-woman-s-suffrage-song

folkVOTE Featured Song and Video August 23

Three Faces in a Row

Words and music by Charlie King

After attending the 2013 March on Washington I wrote “3 Faces In a Row,’ to echo Rev. Sharpton’s powerful call to challenge Voter Suppression.

“We’re on our way to North Carolina, we’re on our way to Texas, we’re on our way to Florida. And when they ask us for our voter ID, take out a photo of Medgar Evers; take out a photo of Goodman, Chaney & Schwerner; take out a photo of Viola Liuzzo – they gave their lives so we could vote. Look at this photo. It gives you the idea of who we are.” Rev. Al Sharpton, Aug. 24, 2013, 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.

folkVOTE Featured Song and Video August 17

Not Going Back (I Don’t Think So)

Words and music by Mary Lou Fulton

Not Going Back is the winner of the Social Change Song of the Year contest organized by the Renaissance Artists and Writers Association! See notgoingback.org for more about the song and to request free sheet music and choir arrangements.

Credits: Lyrics and vocals by Mary Lou Fulton Music by Mary Lou Fulton & Rob Seals, founder of the Songwriting School of Los Angeles Song arranged and produced by Rob Seals, who also played acoustic guitar Video directed and produced by Joe Rubalcaba.

folkVOTE Featured Song and Video August 11

America the Possible / Susan Shann / © 2020

Tell me why just being who you are should be a crime
Why the color of my skin determines if that fate is mine
If Jesus Christ were here, he would be weeping for us all
‘Cause if we can’t lift each other up, together we will fall
And you can say “That’s not my problem”, sit out on the sidelines
Or you can join in the fight
Either way it’s a decision, one you’ll have to live with
In the struggle between wrong and right
Oh, I believe together we can be unstoppable
Yes, I believe in America the possible
For every name heard in the news, ten thousand more unknown
Living in the shadows of a promise they have not been shown
Behind our differences we share a common dream
A country where all people live in peace and harmony
And we can say “That’s not our problem”, sit out on the sidelines
Or we can join in the fight
Either way it’s a decision, one we’ll have to live with
In the struggle between wrong and right
Oh, I believe together we can be unstoppable
Yes, I believe in America the possible
Some say “Do unto others…” Some say “Every man for himself”
Me, I want to live in a country where worth isn’t measured
By race, religion, gender, or wealth
Sometimes the lines get drawn, sometimes the truth gets lost
Between victim and oppressor, we may never know the cost
Maybe we can’t undo the damage of the past
But we can start right here, right now to find true freedom… at last
At last, oh at last
I won’t say “That’s not my problem”, I won’t sit out on the sidelines
I’m gonna join in this fight
‘Cause I know that my decision, is one I’ll have to live with
For the rest of my life
Oh, I believe together we can be unstoppable
Yes, I believe in America the possible
Yes, I believe in America…
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America
And to the republic for which it stands
One nation, under God, Indivisible
With liberty and justice… for all… It’s for all… It’s for ALL… Ooh

folkVOTE Featured Song and Video August 4

Vote, Dammit! by John McCutcheon

https://youtu.be/JSkwk6Z7HUk

Vote, Dammit!

words & music by John McCutcheon

words & music by John McCutcheon

John Lewis walked across that bridge
(So you could) vote, dammit
Like a soldier charging up a ridge
(So you could) vote, dammit
Since that day in Selma town
When violence threw him to the ground
He rose each time he was beaten down
So vote, dammit

Chorus

Vote dammit
Stand in line
Vote dammit
Every time
Prove your power, let it shine
And vote dammit

They fought the Klan, they fought Jim Crow
(So you could) vote, dammit
They fought so you could have it so
So vote, dammit
They were brave and they were true
Did what they were asked to do
Now the future looks to you
So vote, dammit 

Chorus

For fifty years we’ve had to fight
So vote, dammit
Still they try to steal our right
So vote, dammit
Will you rise when you are asked to stand
When the call goes out, will you raise your hand
Let your voice be heard across this land
So vote, dammit

Chorus

Bridge

All those heroes of the past
Dreamed ‘bout the ballot that they’d cast
Prayed their sacrifice would last

So, on that Tuesday in November
Vote, dammit
Those gone before we will remember
Vote, dammit
‘Cause freedom is not guaranteed
We are the proof that they’d succeed
Good Trouble is just what we need
So vote, dammit

Chorus

July 31, 2020
St. George Island, FL

folkVOTE featured Song and Video – July 23

“A Perfect Storm” – written by John Dillon, performed by John Dillon and Vivian Nesbitt

Free MP3 download: https://tinyurl.com/prfstrm

30 Sec. Save Our Democracy (chorus) Video link: https://vimeo.com/434911514

“A Perfect Storm” highlights how the trifecta of the Covid-19 pandemic, systemic Racism and government Corruption has motivated people of all ages and races to take to the streets and make their voices heard. John & Viv’s aim is to harness this energy and inspire massive voter turnout in November. John says, “We hope DJs will play the song and use the PSA in their shows as often as possible between now and November.”

Virtual Choir of Resistance: Vivian Nesbitt, Dan Navarro, Tret Fure, Joe Jencks, Cathy Fink, Daniel Boling, Jono Manson, Steve Gillette, Cindy Mangsen, Don Richmond, Jon Gold, Tom Naunas, Jackson Dillon, Jessica Dillon, Sidney Dillon-King, Tony Glaser, Katie Anne Mitchell, Catherine Reid, Annie & Rod Capps.
Mixed by 7-time Grammy winner, Joel Moss, videos by John Dillon

folkVOTE featured Song and Video – July 15

“Say Can You See” by Scott Cook from his forthcoming album, Tangle of Souls

I love this country, I love the people and the land
But there’s a lot of stuff happening that I can’t understand
We got billions for bailouts, we got trillions for wars
But it’s hard for working people to make a living anymore

Hear me out for a second, this ain’t a partisan song
It ain’t about right and left, it’s about right and wrong
We’re fighting over the scraps while a few are living like kings
‘Cause screwing us over’s a bipartisan thing

And it’s working people who made this country great
Not the greedy opportunists or the peddlers of hate
And if a new day’s coming, it’s gotta come from you and me
Oh say, can you see?

See, I got a neighbour, we don’t always agree
He’s a bit of a redneck, according to a hippy like me
But if you’re in the ditch, he’ll pull you out, I know he will
And that’s more than I can say for all those dickheads on the hill

And it’s working people who made this country great
Not the greedy opportunists or the peddlers of hate
And if a new day’s coming, it’s gotta come from you and me
Oh say, can you see?
Oh say, can you see?

He works hard for his family, he’s got loyalty and pride
The company took all he gave and then cast him aside
See, there’s profit in poverty, hell, there’s profit in prisons
And they don’t even pay taxes, they just buy politicians

In New York Harbour there’s a lady with a flame
Still calling in the huddled masses in Liberty’s name
But there’s fear on the airwaves and hatred wrapped in the flag
Turning strangers into enemies and our riches into rags

And a revolution to break the grip of greed
Don’t need a strongman or a saviour, but I believe we’re gonna need
Whatever magic this old world’s got left to start
And all the ammunition in the chambers of our hearts

Scott Cook
prairie balladeer, awestruck vagabond

folkVOTE featured Song and Video: “Freedom is a Constant Song” by Si Kahn – July 7


FREEDOM IS A CONSTANT SONG

I remember 1965
In a country church singing freedom songs
Good people struggling to survive
Asking, why must we wait so long?


Late this evening I can hear
    From my window hight above
Young marchers singing back the fear
Against the chill of a dream gone wrong
They bring us courage, hope and love
For freedom is a constant song
Freedom is a constant song


50 years since I first learned
These songs of longing to be free
Past all the bridges that they’ve burned
They hearten and encourage me


I am so grateful that tonight
I saw these marchers come again
No work to do except what’s right
No words to say except amen


Words and music by Si Kahn.
© Joe Hill Music LLC (ASCAP)
All rights reserved.

folkVOTE’s first featured Song and Video: “1920” by Saro Lynch-Thomason and Sam Gleaves – June 29

from I Have Seen Women: Songs by Si Kahn Celebrating Women’s Lives and Struggles by Saro Lynch-Thomason & Sam Gleaves (Strictly Country Records)

“1920”

Music and lyrics by Si Kahn, Sam Gleaves, and Saro Lynch-Thomason
© Joe Hill Music LLC, Saro Lynch-Thomason & Fabulachian Music (All ASCAP)
For background and context, click here.

Have you seen a long long line
As women stand and wait to vote
They’ve been waiting for a long long time
But now the year is 1920

The last petition, the final prayer
The signs and banners stored away
One last cheer lingers in the air
It echoes down to us today

Chorus
Since they stood tall and signed their names
One hundred years have come and gone
So much has changed, so much remains
We go on, we still go on

The last march ended, one last song shared
The vote for women finally passed
The Constitution now repaired
Suffrage is the law at last

Through years of beatings, torture, jail
They stood their ground, they claimed their rights
They did not yield to scorn and fear
The lamp they lifted still burns bright (Chorus)

Give thanks to those who showed the way
In their history you will find
How fierce love and stubborn strength
Can help you through the hardest times

Hold their courage in your hearts
Sisters, workers, children, friends
We know the vote was just a start
Keep the faith as they did then (Chorus)

Did you see that long long line
Young women laughing, filled with pride
They’re about to vote for the very first time
Like in the year of 1920