Mudcat Café message #147959 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #16028   Message #147959
Posted By: Art Thieme
11-Dec-99 - 12:33 AM
Thread Name: the Little Red Songbook--I.W.W.
Subject: RE: the LITTLE RED SONGBOOK--I.W.W.
check out www.iww.org

Abby, Ed Sadlowsky---a real name from Chicago antiquity ! Wasn't that the steel workers union? (Back when there were steel foundrys.) There was a real populist charisma about him if I recall. He was there and burning bright--and then he wasn't--like a starburst firecracker. I'm gonna try him in a search engine & see what comes up.

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That reminds me of a tale about the 3 U.S.Steel vice presidents who died & went to heaven. St. Peter wouldn't let 'em in. Said, "Guys we've got too many good union men here. They'd be real upset if I let ya in." So he sent em to hell. A bit later there was a call on the "HOT LINE"---the devil calling St. Peter. Said, "Pete, did you send those 3 U.S. Steel vice presidents down here?" Pete answered, "Yeah, I sure did. Is there a problem?" "Well" said the devil, "They've only been down here 20 minutes and they've already got every furnace but one shut down!!!"

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I posted a fine old Wobbly song in Kat's thread on the song "Where The Silvery Colorado Wends It's Way". Both had the same tune.

Also, a while ago I posted reminiscences of a man I met when I was 20 years old---a fiddle-playing Wobbly hobo that I tape recorded in Chicago in 1961---93 year old Paul Durst (1868-19??). If I can find the general transcripts of a taped conversation I had with Paul, I'll post those. Those talks became a couple o' columns in Come For To Sing magazine and also in ---a show biz monthly. Ask Big Mick about those tapes. I believe he thought they were pretty amazing.

But PAUL DURST (along with Woody and Kerouac and Steinbeck) gave me that heady romantic wanderlust that sustained me in a lifetime spent singing and searching, meandering and learning on the road long after a good percentage of the bloom was off the sage. (Enough blown waterpumps at three A.M. can do that.) But when I listen to those tapes, the struggles, hardships and glory of that old gentleman's life sure do come to life for me.

And I feel some of that same wonder in these posts--- a dedication to a bigger thing, a love of the trip, of going---of making the WESTERING journey until you run out of continent. So then you go again---back the way you came 'cause the crops are ready for pullin' back there--the jobs are there. The Eisenhower super-mega-highways just don't cut it. The Grail won't be found there ever. (The Grail is the journey itself anyhow.)

Hell, I'm off on a word binge again--a whole other tangent. Sorry 'bout that. But I still love the going--staying down close to the ground in a way that no air travel will ever duplicate. Or is that a generational thing? Is that love of the westering impulse something the new cyber--supersonic world can't slow down enough to feel? The calm of the hobo jungle and the comaraderie of people trying to change a system of things--hopefully for the better?

That's enough. I'm out of here. Really. I mean it.

Your turn.

Love,

Art Thieme