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Songs about the homeless

Newport Boy 26 Jan 12 - 04:21 AM
open mike 25 Jan 12 - 11:53 AM
Charley Noble 25 Jan 12 - 08:26 AM
Elmore 24 Jan 12 - 10:12 AM
Charley Noble 24 Jan 12 - 09:25 AM
Hoblander 23 Jan 12 - 05:33 PM
maeve 23 Jan 12 - 05:08 PM
Arkie 23 Jan 12 - 04:15 PM
Mark Ross 23 Jan 12 - 03:24 PM
GUEST,Speranzo 23 Jan 12 - 09:46 AM
open mike 16 Apr 10 - 01:40 AM
Ebbie 15 Apr 10 - 09:57 PM
GUEST,Wayne, near Baltimore 15 Apr 10 - 05:16 PM
Amergin 15 Apr 10 - 04:10 PM
dick greenhaus 15 Apr 10 - 04:06 PM
GUEST,Neil D 15 Apr 10 - 10:19 AM
Charley Noble 14 Apr 10 - 04:34 PM
GUEST,David E. 14 Apr 10 - 04:31 PM
oldhippie 14 Apr 10 - 03:12 PM
open mike 14 Apr 10 - 07:27 AM
Acorn4 14 Apr 10 - 04:29 AM
GUEST,Arjay 10 Sep 01 - 05:15 AM
Hilary 06 Feb 98 - 01:51 PM
Wolfgang 04 Feb 98 - 07:02 AM
Dave L 03 Feb 98 - 11:52 PM
Art Thieme 03 Feb 98 - 11:51 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 03 Feb 98 - 07:04 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 03 Feb 98 - 07:03 PM
Wolfgang 02 Feb 98 - 09:43 AM
John in Brisbane 01 Feb 98 - 07:03 PM
30 Jan 98 - 08:31 AM
Alice 29 Jan 98 - 06:45 PM
Alice 29 Jan 98 - 06:25 PM
Sir 29 Jan 98 - 04:15 PM
28 Jan 98 - 10:09 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 28 Jan 98 - 07:40 PM
Joe Offer 28 Jan 98 - 03:23 AM
Alice 28 Jan 98 - 01:34 AM
Cyd 27 Jan 98 - 05:06 PM
BK 26 Jan 98 - 09:45 PM
Ron K 26 Jan 98 - 08:46 PM
BK 24 Jan 98 - 01:44 PM
Sir 24 Jan 98 - 08:10 AM
rich r 24 Jan 98 - 12:55 AM
John Nolan 23 Jan 98 - 05:29 PM
Brian Hoskin 23 Jan 98 - 08:13 AM
Wolfgang 23 Jan 98 - 04:07 AM
Wolfgang 23 Jan 98 - 04:02 AM
Richard 22 Jan 98 - 11:56 PM
Bruce O. 22 Jan 98 - 10:57 PM
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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Newport Boy
Date: 26 Jan 12 - 04:21 AM

There was another thread on this topic 2 years ago, and I posted a song from the 1966 BBC drama by Ken Loach "Cathy Come Home". It's still the most powerful song about homelessness that I know.
Click here


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: open mike
Date: 25 Jan 12 - 11:53 AM

The Berrymans have a song called Homeless..

there is a radio show http://news.homelessnessmarathon.org/
that airs each winter that focusses on the homeless

I have a recording of christmas songs done by homeless people
(not sure of the title or record company)

here are some links:

this one from Nashville looks most interesting...
http://www.amazon.com/HOMELESS-AMERICA-Twenty-One-Conscience-Century/dp/B000BGQSZE

http://www.songfacts.com/category-songs_about_homelessness_or_desperation.php

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20070831170952AAh73m0


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Charley Noble
Date: 25 Jan 12 - 08:26 AM

Elmore-

"The Family Car" is certainly another tongue in cheek classic from the Barrymans.

A lot of the songs mentioned above, composed for amusement or shock, reflect a grim reality where people are actually living in their family cars, or in rental storage units, or huddled in blankets over heating grates in major cities.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Elmore
Date: 24 Jan 12 - 10:12 AM

The Family Car by Lou and Peter Berryman. God, I wish I could type. I'd give you the lyrics.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Charley Noble
Date: 24 Jan 12 - 09:25 AM

One of my favorite Cicely Fox Smith poems is focused on a "traveller" she encountered while fishing one evening on the Outer Wharf in Victoria, British Columbia, around 1912. In contrast to many of the songs posted above this poem celebrates "homelessness." I adapted her poem for singing and here are the lyrics and notes (copy and paste into WORD/TIMES/12 to line up chords):

Adapted for singing by Charles Ipcar, © 2008
Tune: Charles Ipcar, © 2008

The Traveller

Chorus:

G------C---------------------G------------------C---------------------G
Well, I ain't got folks an' I ain't got money, ain't got nothing at all,
--------C----------------------G-------------------D----------D7---G
Just a queer old thirst that keeps me movin', movin' on till I fall.


G-----------------------------D-----------------------C--------------------G
Now I've loops o' string in-stead o' buttons, I've mostly holes for a shirt;
----C------------------------G-------------------D---------------------D7
My boots are bust an' my hat's a goner, I'm gritty with dust an' dirt;
---------G--------------------D-------------------C---------------------G
But I'm sittin' here on this wharf a-watchin' the China ships go forth,
---------C-----------------G----------------------D----------------D7------G
An' the little black tugs come a-glidin' with timber booms from the North;
C----------------------G---------------C---------------------G
Sittin' and seein' the broad Pacific break at my feet in foam –
C---------------------------G-----------------D-----------------D7--G
Me that was born with a taste for travel, miles an' miles from home. (CHO)

Now they sent me away when I was a nipper to the Board School in the slums,
An' some of them kids was good at spellin', some at figurin' sums;
But whether I went or whether I didn't, they learned me nothing at all,
For I'd be watchin' the flies a-walkin' all over the maps on the wall;
Strollin' over the lakes an' mountains, over the plains an' seas, –
As if they was born with a taste for travel – just the same as me! (CHO)

If I'd been born a rich man's son with lots o' money to burn,
It wouldn't ha' gone for marble mansions an' oriental urns;
I'd be sailin' in rakish yachts or rolling in plush Pullman cars, –
I've seen 'em yachts a-lyin' at anchor, night-time under the stars;
I'd ha' paid my fare where I've beat my way (but I wouldn't ha' liked it more!),
Me that was born with a taste for travel – the same if you're rich or poor. (CHO)

Now I've beat the ties an' rode the bumpers from sea to shinin' sea,
An' I've work'd like a Turk down in the stokehold, dined off duff an' tea;
An' many's the time I've been short o' shelter, an' many's the time o' grub,
But I got away from the rows o' houses, the streets, an' the corner pub;
So here by the side of a sea that's shinin' under a sky like flame –
Me that was born with a taste for travel, need no other claim. (CHO)

Notes:

From Sailor Town: Sea Songs and Ballads, edited by Cicely Fox Smith, published by George H. Doran Co., New York, US, © 1919, pp. 120-122. First appeared in Songs in Sail published by Elkin Mathews, © 1914.

The poet describes this "traveller" in more detail in Sailor-Town Days, © 1923, p. 170:

"The Pacific coast is a great place for rolling stones of every sort and description. I remember meeting what I should say was the very perfection of the type. He was sitting on the edge of the Outer Wharf — it was in Victoria (BC) — on a sort of coaming that runs along the edge, very comfortable to sit on, though given to exuding tar in very hot weather. His coat — I don't think there was a shirt underneath — was fastened together with string, being innocent of buttons. His knee showed through his trousers. His boots were ruins. But he spoke with the unmistakable accents of cultivation."

This poem was first adapted for singing by Charles Ipcar in 2008, as recorded on Sailortown Days, © 2009.

And here is a link to a MP3 sample of how it's sung: click here for MP3 sample!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Hoblander
Date: 23 Jan 12 - 05:33 PM

"Rich Man Poor Man" 1964
"Out There" 1964
"Doorways" 1966
above in Forgotten Songs Remembered
"Among The Dazzling Lights" 1964
Unpublished
Graeme Miles, he too has sometimes slept under the lee of a wall.
Kevin


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: maeve
Date: 23 Jan 12 - 05:08 PM

Dave Goulder's "Faraway Tom"


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Arkie
Date: 23 Jan 12 - 04:15 PM

Shawn Camp sings (sort of)Guy Clark's song, "Homeless" on This One's for Him; Tribute to Guy Clark CD. I think that Camp also was co-producer on the compilation 33 song CD.


Homeless
Lyrics by Guy Clark

Cardboard sign old and bent says 'friend for life 25 cents
When did this start making sense? Man it's really getting cold
Sometimes I forget things and I get confused
I could still be working, but they refuse
Now I'm living with the bums and the whores and the abused, man I hate getting old

Homeless, get away from here
dont give them no money they'll just spend it on beer
Homeless, will work for food, you'll do anything that you gotta do,
when you're homeless.

Betty sings a song that no one hears, as the wind begins to freeze her tears
She says 'God it's been so many years', she's way past complainin
She sings a heartelt melody, one that begs for harmony
No it's not what she thought it would be, but hey it could be rainin

Homeless, get away from here
dont give them no money they'll just spend it on beer
Homeless, will work for food, you'll do anything that you gotta do,
when you're homeless.

You know life ain't easy it takes work, it takes healing cause you're gonna
get hurt
You can lose your faith you can lose your shirt, lose your way sometimes
Ah you never really have control, sometimes you just gotta let it go
When the final line unfolds, it don't always rhyme


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Mark Ross
Date: 23 Jan 12 - 03:24 PM

ROOM FOR THE POOR by Utah Phillips.

Mark Ross


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Subject: Lyr ADD: Ramblin' after Rain
From: GUEST,Speranzo
Date: 23 Jan 12 - 09:46 AM

RAMBLIN' AFTER RAIN
(Pat DeSimio)

Brightly in the early mornin'
When the golden day is dawnin'
And the birds are callin' -
Tweet-a-cheep, coo, kaw! -
I waken from my muddy bed
To crocuses around my head, oh,
And I leave my toeprints
Right among them a'.

And who am I? Doora-lai-dum, da-dum
Who are you? Doora-lai-dum day.
Thentanai ah thentanadum
Tooralai a' ramblin' after rain.

With me pack upon me back
I wander by the rabbit tracks;
The creatures have a canny knack
To find their way.
The leaves around are wet, and glistening;
As I pass, they each'll kiss me -
Half a thousand sweethearts
Will be mine this day.

An' who am I? Doora-lai-dum, da-dum
Who are you? Doora-lai-dum day.
Thentanai ah thentanadum
Tooralai a' ramblin' after rain.

Now, I've a hearth and I've a home -
It looks much like the world, though,
And all the world in it roams
And roams at will.
Guests'll come, and guests'll go
And some build houses out o' stone
And close out plenty more o' life
Beside the chill.

An' who am I? Doora-lai-dum, da-dum
Who are you? Doora-lai-dum day.
Thentanai ah thentanadum
Tooralai a' ramblin' after rain.

Fare thee well, my friend and brother -
Bless you, and your pleasant chains.
Me, I chose a wilder lover
And I go a'ramblin' after rain.

An' who am I? Doora-lai-dum, da-dum
Who are you? Doora-lai-dum day.
Thentanai ah thentanadum
Tooralai a' ramblin' after rain.

Here's a less socially-conscious (but markedly cheerier) piece in the tradition of "Beggarman".

PD


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: open mike
Date: 16 Apr 10 - 01:40 AM

Stephanie Davis sings a song about Ikey (on her Crocus in the Snow c.d.) he is a homeless vet who scrounges stuff at the dump. He hocks his war medals and the pawn shop displays them in the window as trophies...the Medal of Honor belonged to Sgt. Ike McKay


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Ebbie
Date: 15 Apr 10 - 09:57 PM

Homeless
                      Buddy Tabor, Juneau, Alaska

Fred was a gentle man, he'd never harm a soul
He still could make me laugh in my world that had grown cold
I often think of him, he was my only friend
I never dreamed this was the way that it would finally end

We met at the mission shelter, wondered if things would ever change
At night we slept under the interstate bridge to shelter from the rain
It was three feet tall and you had to kneel on down to crawl back in
But you wouldn't wake up with a knife in your back from someone else's sins

In the day we'd walk the streets begging for spare change
We worked the ATM machine on the corner of Fifth and Main
These kids in fast cars would drive by and call us names
I'd just turn around, flip 'em off and Fred would do the same

    For all have sinned and fallen down, short of God's great glory
    I heard the mission preacher scream it, Amen and Holy, Holy
    The heart is full of wickedness and drowns in its deceit
    And you got to watch each step you take when you're out here on on   the street

Late one night we were heading back to the bridge to get some sleep
We were almost there when this car full of kids came racing down the street
They jumped out of their car with their baseball bats and pellet guns
I dropped my sleeping bag and yelled at Fred, we'd better run

I scrambled up the incline, knelt on down and crawled back in
But Fred had tripped and fallen down. This would be his very end
I heard his screams among their laughter as they broke both of his legs
What seemed like a time of eternity Fred lay on the ground dead

The cops threw Fred in the ambulance like he was just a piece of meat
I heard one laugh and tell another, that's one less bum on the street
The preacher at the mission was unfazed by the news
At the evening service he never mentioned Fred.
My God, what can you do

The city paid and buried Fred deep in a pauper's grave
Those kids were never caught. They slipped the noose, and got away
But me, I bought this gun and now I know what I must do
'Cause it don't matter any more when your life is almost through

    For all have sinned and fallen down, short of God's great glory
    I heard the mission priest scream it, Amen and holy, holy
    The heart is full of wickedness and drowns in its deceit
    And you got to watch each step you take when you're out here on   the street


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: GUEST,Wayne, near Baltimore
Date: 15 Apr 10 - 05:16 PM

"Fast Freight" by Terry Gilkyson, recorded by Dave Guard and The Calypsonians and by The Kingston Trio on their first album.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Amergin
Date: 15 Apr 10 - 04:10 PM

On Rick Fielding's album Lifeline he has a cover of Grit Laskin's great song Margins of My Neighbourhood.....


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 15 Apr 10 - 04:06 PM

Nobody seems to have mentioned Ian Robb's Homeless Wassail--a particularly good one.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 15 Apr 10 - 10:19 AM

Slam poet and alternative hip-hop artist, Saul Williams, uses a song about one form of injustice to address another. In the end isn't all injustice interrelated? A powerful and moving video: Sunday Bloody Sunday


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Charley Noble
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 04:34 PM

I've certainly missed this thread altogether. They're some great songs posted. I believe I'm posted on a similar thread Charlie King's classic titled "Self-Storage," his alternative low-cost housing song.

Here's another classic from our old friends in the UK:

Words by Hackney & Islington Music Workshop, © 1978
Tune: parody of Fiddler's Green by John Connelly © World March Music Ltd.

New "Fiddler's Green"

Now Fiddler's Green is a place I've heard tell
Where old squatters go if they don't go to hell;
It's where all homeless people find homes, I believe;
There's no locks on the doors because nobody thieves.

Chorus:

Wrap me up with my blanket and crowbar;
No more 'round the squats I'll be seen;
You can tell my old squat mates that I've had my lot, mates,
And I'll see you someday in Fiddler's Green.


There's houses stand empty in Fiddler's Green;
The walls are all dry and the floors are all clean;
You just go to the Council and ask them the way,
And a bailiff comes 'round to make sure you're O.K. (CHO)

All the neighbors rush in with a big pot of tea,
While the meter is fixed by a friendly P.C.;
There's no leaky roofs and there's no leaky bogs,
And there's no nasty callers with Alsatian dogs. (CHO)

Now working for money, of course, it's been banned;
You just take what you need and you do what you can,
And even the babies are learning to see
There's no need to be greedy when everything's free. (CHO)

Now it seems to be homeless these days is a crime;
So I'll pack all my bags and I'll travel through time,
And if all you good people can see what I mean
You may ask what's so strange about Fiddler's Green. (CHO)

Warm regards,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: GUEST,David E.
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 04:31 PM

I'm surprised that no one has mentioned "Marie" by Townes Van Zandt.

David E.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: oldhippie
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 03:12 PM

TEARDROPS OF BLOOD
Richard Aberdeen
from the Homeless In America CD mentioned abovve   


      Leroy lives in a cardboard box

      Down by the mission bell

      Where saints refuse to go

      And the sinners wish him well

      Forced to carry his own cross

      While we drive nails in his coffin

      You might say it is routine

      It happens far to often


      A decorated soldier

      Veteran of the war

      Who would've thought that he would be

      Among the sick and poor?

      The preacher-man wags his head

      While the rich man turns away

      His mother looks on weeping

      Teardrops of blood are falling


      Jesus sang a Samaritan song

      Down by the mission bell

      Where saints refused to go

      And the sinners wished him well

      Forced to carry his own cross

      While we drove nails in his coffin

      You might say it was routine

      It happened far to often


      A decorated soldier

      Veteran of the war

      Who would've thought that he would be

      Among the sick and poor?

      The preacher-man wagged his head

      While the rich man turned away

      His mother looked on weeping

      Teardrops of blood were falling


      Leroy lives in a cardboard box

      Down by the mission bell

      Where saints refuse to go

      And the sinners wish him well

      Seems no one down here gives a damn

      Though the stone's been rolled away

      Our father looks on weeping

      Teardrops of blood are falling


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: open mike
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 07:27 AM

unfortunately the topic is quite a "popular" one-- prolific one.

There is an annual radio program called the Homelessness Marathon.
It is a 14 hour program that airs each year...in Feb. i think...and here are some of the songs I play during it..
Homeless by Lou and Peter Berryman it is on page 4 here
http://www.louandpeter.com/allsdlyr.pdf

Sarah Elizabeth Campbell's song Geraldine and Ruthie Mae can also be
heard on the wonderful Women's Bluegrass Group album Blue Rose

here is a whole long list of songs about homelessness
http://nwfolk.com/songlists/homeless.html

http://www.amazon.com/HOMELESS-AMERICA-Twenty-One-Conscience-Century/dp/B000BGQSZE

here is a touching song on you tube--and many others show up in the
selections...http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5Gu1r6A3VE

there is also a christmas song album of songs being sung by homeless
people i can't find it right now...but I'll look for my copy and post]


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Acorn4
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 04:29 AM

"Someday I'll be Saturday Night" by Bon Jovi hasn't been mentioned yet.

Someday I'll Be Saturday Night

(D)Hey, man I'm alive I'm (G)takin' each day a night at a time
(D)Yes I,m down but somehow I'll get(A7sus) by(A7)
(G)Hey hey hey hey man, I'm going to(A) live my life
Like I(D) ain't got nothing but this (Bm)roll of the dice
I'm(A) feelin' like a Monday but (G)someday I'll be Saturday(D) night

(D)Hey, my name is Jim, where did I go wrong
My(F#m) life's a bargain basement, all the good shit's gone
I (G)just can't hold a job, where do I belong
I'm(D) sleeping in my car, my (A)dreams move(D) on

My(D)name is Billy Jean, my love was bought and sold
I'm(F#m) only sixteen, I feel a hundred years old
My (G)foster daddy went, took my innocence away
The(A) street life aint much better, but at least I get paid

And(Bm) Tuesday just might (G)go my way
It(D) can't get worse than yesterday
(F#m)Thursdays, Fridays ain't been kind
But (Gbar)somehow I'll sur(E)vive

(D)Hey man I'm alive I'm(G) takin' each day a night at a time
(D)Yeah I'm down, but I know I'll get(Asus) by(A)
Hey hey hey(G) hey, man gotta(A) live my life
Like I(D) ain't got nothin' but this(Bm) roll of the dice
I'm(A) feelin' like a Monday, but (G)someday I'll be Saturday(D) night

Now (D)I can't say my name, and tell you where I am
I want to(F#m) roll myself away, don't know if I can
I(Gbar) wish that I could be in some other time and place
With(Abar) someone elses soul, someone elses face

Oh, (Bm)Tuesday just might(G) go my way
It (D)can't get worse than(Dsus)yesterday(D)
(F#m)Thursdays, Fridays ain't been kind
But (Gbar)somehow I'll sur(E)vive

(D)Hey, man I'm alive I'm(G) takin' each day a night at a time
(D)Yeah I'm down, but I know I'll get(Asus) by(A)
(A)Hey hey hey (G)hey, man gotta(A) live my life
I'm gonna(D) pick up all the pieces and what's (Bm)left of my pride
I'm(A) feelin' like a Monday, but(G) someday I'll be Saturday(D) night

Saturday night Here we go

(D)Some day I'll be Saturday(G) night
I'll be (D)back on my feet, I'll be doin' al(G)right
It (D)may not be tomorrow baby, that's OK
I (G)ain't goin' down, gonna (A)find a way, hey hey hey

(D)Hey, man I'm alive I'm(G) takin' each day a night at a time
(D)Yeah I'm down, but I know I'll get(Asus) by(A)
(A)Hey hey hey (G)hey, man gotta(A) live my life
I'm gonna(D) pick up all the pieces and what's (Bm)left of my pride
I'm(A) feelin' like a Monday, but(G) someday I'll be Saturday(D) night


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: GUEST,Arjay
Date: 10 Sep 01 - 05:15 AM

I thought I'd refresh this thread to see if anyone has more to add -- perhaps songs written since the thread was first posted.

Some that seemed to me to be relevant to the category (in addition to The Midnight Choir and Hard Times Come Again No More and Nobody Knows You ...) are

Trudy -David Maloney

There But For Fortune - Phil Ochs

Railroad Lady

Will There Be any Boxcars In Heaven - Jimmie Rodgers

Wabash Cannonball

Waltzing Matilda

Pretty Papers -- Willie Nelson

Here Comes That Rainbow Again -- Kris Kristofferson


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Hilary
Date: 06 Feb 98 - 01:51 PM

Hi, hope I'm not too late to add my 10c worth. 3 songs come to mind immediately. "Mr. Wendell" by Arrested Development, "Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson, & "Streets of Philladelphia" by what's his name... that all American guy from New Jersey.:) Check them out.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Wolfgang
Date: 04 Feb 98 - 07:02 AM

John in Brisbane has mentioned and posted a few lines of "Homeless Man". See an extra thred for the complete lyrics.
Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Dave L
Date: 03 Feb 98 - 11:52 PM

Two other songs I did not see mentioned--Brother Can you Spare A Dime--and more recently, Gospel according to Luke by Skip Ewing.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Art Thieme
Date: 03 Feb 98 - 11:51 PM

I didn't notice "Only A Tramp" listed here. It's a grand old country song by Hazel & Grady Cole as I recall. Many have recorded it. Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 03 Feb 98 - 07:04 PM

Of course, there is always the old classic "Nobody Knows You When You're Down And Out."


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 03 Feb 98 - 07:03 PM

Did anyone mention that Jimmie Rodgers song about the hobo?I think it goes like this:

All around the water tank
Waiting for the train
A thousand miles away from home
Sitting in the rain
I walked up to a brakeman
To give him a line of talk
He said if you've got money
I'll see that you don't walk
I haven't got a penny
Not a nickle can I show
Get off, get off, you railroad bum
And he slammed that boxcar door


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Wolfgang
Date: 02 Feb 98 - 09:43 AM

Eric Bogle has sung it too.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: John in Brisbane
Date: 01 Feb 98 - 07:03 PM

'Homeless Man' is a very relevant song to this thread. Written circa 1960's by Harry Robinson, it tells the story of homelessness during the Great Depression. I used to sing it 20 odd years ago but have largely forgotten it. Perhaps some other Australians know of it.

Some snippets:

For we've travelled hard these last ten weary years, And my lonely ... have slowly turned to tears, If you think that I'm complaining I can tell you that I'm not, For I know that this is just the drifter's lot.

Many years my home has been the roadside camps, I have starved and sweated on the river banks, And I've fought with fist and feet rough-neck drifters that I meet ....

Regards John

PS I know that it was published in the Australian version of 'Tradition'.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From:
Date: 30 Jan 98 - 08:31 AM

I hope I'm not repeating any thing since I haven't read the whole string. I tried .
searching the DT with bum and got 54 hits, and 25 searching on hobo, there may
be a few other things you could search on like homeless, or beggar.

My head is spinning with all the songs that could apply. Two that come to mind.
are This Old Mandolin, which I posted a while back, and a song that tells the
christmas legend in a modern setting that was song by Pete Seager I think, can't .
find it. I refer to it as Savior Too The Poor. I don't know what it should be called.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Alice
Date: 29 Jan 98 - 06:45 PM

ooops, don't know how that posted twice. Over the holidays I memorized the two verses I have in an old book of "Home Sweet Home" to sing along with "Auld Lang Syne".. They are both such classics that we think we know them almost too well, but I realized that I had never really paid attention to all of "Home Sweet Home" before.
2nd verse
An exile from home, splendor dazzles in vain
Oh, give me my lowly thatched cottage again.
The birds, singing gaily, that come at my call.
Give me them with the peace of mind, dearer than all.

Then there's that instrument joke... What do you call a bodhran player (banjo player, etc. etc.) without a girlfriend??.......homeless. alice, mt


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Alice
Date: 29 Jan 98 - 06:25 PM

2nd verse of The Dreary Black Hills
The round house in Cheyenne is filled every night
With loafers and bummers of most every plight
On their backs is no clothes, in their pockets no bills
Each day they keep starting for the Dreary Black Hills.

7th verse of Buffalo Skinners
Oh, it's now we've crossed Pease River and homeward we are bound.
No more in that hell-fired country shall ever we be found.
Go home to our wives and sweethearts, tell others not to go,
For God's forsaken the buffalo range and the damned old buffalo.

That one may be technically about those who are home-sick, not home-less, but I don't think homeless always means unemployed. alice, in mt


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Sir
Date: 29 Jan 98 - 04:15 PM

Okay, I know it's not folk but there's Charlie Pride's song that starts out: "Is Anybody Going to San Anton'"


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From:
Date: 28 Jan 98 - 10:09 PM

You're right Tim. Cowboys were hardly homeless in today's sense. Their home was the ranch, if not there, then their horse and bedroll was considered their home. Wanderer's, laboring for slave wages, yes. But hardly homeless. And if that's the case then most of Alice's songs don't fit, but who really cares. There're good songs.

Richard


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 28 Jan 98 - 07:40 PM

I thought Buffalo Skinners was about cowboys. Isn't that the one about going out on the range of the buffalo?


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Joe Offer
Date: 28 Jan 98 - 03:23 AM

Alice, May I Sleep In Your Barn, Mister isn't in the database yet, but it has been discussed and posted in a couple of threads. Good song.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Alice
Date: 28 Jan 98 - 01:34 AM

"May I Sleep In Your Barn Tonight, Mister?". I haven't checked the database to see if it is there. I can post lyrics if it's not. Also, "Bring Me Back My Wandering Boy", "When Work's All Done This Fall", "The Baggage Coach Ahead", "Babes in the Woods", "The Black Sheep", "The Dreary Black Hills", "The Old Chisholm Trail", "Buffalo Skinners", "Bury Me Not On The Lone Prarie", "The Trail to Mexico", and,
"Whoopie Tie Yie Yo"...
last verse
I ain't got no father, I ain't got no mother,
My friends they all left me when first I did roam,
I ain't got no sisters, I ain't got no brothers,
I'm a poor lonesome cowboy, and a long way from home.

alice, in montana


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Cyd
Date: 27 Jan 98 - 05:06 PM

There's a very moving and thought-provoking song called The Hobo that Kate Wolf did. It was written by someone else, but you can find the words and music at the memorial website: http://www.katewolf.com/index.html


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: BK
Date: 26 Jan 98 - 09:45 PM

Just remembered Paxton's (Can't help but wonder) "Where I'm Bound," and Guthrie's "Plane Wreck At Los Gatos."

Cheers, BK


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Ron K
Date: 26 Jan 98 - 08:46 PM

Here's a few more came into my head.

First Christmas by Stan Rogers

Hobo Lullaby


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: BK
Date: 24 Jan 98 - 01:44 PM

Re somedoy - was it Joe? - interviewing a homeless person; I work in a prison... meet people I'd otherwise never know exist... Quite an experience at times.

I'm not sure anybody mentioned "Here's To You Rounders" by Don Lange; a version is in the Data Base. At our UU church the people really responded well to Stan Roger's somewhat unknown "Sailor's Rest." It's about retired sailors in a "rest home;" not really homeless cuz they have a roof and each other, but still..... presumably these retirees don't have involved family any more. It's rather sad, and a damn good song. I like Tom Lewis's version, base mine very losely on that arrangement.

Cheers, BK


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Sir
Date: 24 Jan 98 - 08:10 AM

How 'bout "So Long, It's Been Good to Know Ya" - Woody Guthrie


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: rich r
Date: 24 Jan 98 - 12:55 AM

I just looked at this extensive thread and 3 songs popped into my mind without thinking. If I go and think about it the list will probably get longer.

"Coal Tattoo" by Billy Edd Wheeler

"Homeless" by Paul Simon & Ladysmith Black Mambazo

"Homeless Broither" by Don McLean


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE WANDERER'S WARNING^^
From: John Nolan
Date: 23 Jan 98 - 05:29 PM

I once had an old 78rpm called a Hillbilly Mixture, probably from the late '30s on which was a tearjerker call The Wanderer's Warning:
I'm riding along on a freight train
Bound for God only knows where
I left my home just this morning
And my heart is heavy with care
I quarreled with my dear old father
Because of the things I had done
He called me a drunkard and a gambler
Not fit to be called his son

I know my old mother is weeping
Day after day while I'm gone
[Remember he'd only been gone hours]
Hoping and watching and praying
For a son who will never come home
So boys, heed a wanderer's warning
Don't break your poor mother's heart
Always stay near to the fireside
And let nothing tear you apart.
The tune, a bleak, dreary, minor-keyed dirge, has unfortunately haunted me for 40 years.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Brian Hoskin
Date: 23 Jan 98 - 08:13 AM

What about the song 'Missing You', recorded by Christy Moore, about the experience of an Irishman homeless and out of work in London. Also, along the same lines, is the song 'The Old Main Drag' by Shane MacGowan, recorded by the Pogues on the album Rum, Sodomy and the Lash.


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Wolfgang
Date: 23 Jan 98 - 04:07 AM

...but don't trust the lyrics on that site; the lyrics over here are better...


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Wolfgang
Date: 23 Jan 98 - 04:02 AM

I'm surprised nobody mentioned yet The Moving on Song from Ewan MacColl. It is a perfect fit to this thread. You can find it in the database, but if want to listen to it, go this place.
Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Richard
Date: 22 Jan 98 - 11:56 PM

No one seems to have mentioned larry Gatlin's version of Midnight Choir. I worked on Skid Row for a few years and his verse hits home.

Also try Fred J. Eaglesmith's song( can't remember the title. Short, acappela

Last night while walking city streets I came upon me for a dollar for something to eat But I gave him all that I had He mumbled his thanks Then he turned to go And I grabbed him by the arm I said, " mister what's your name?" he just shook his head, no, And he said, "It doesn't matter anymore."

Richard


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Subject: RE: Songs about the homeless
From: Bruce O.
Date: 22 Jan 98 - 10:57 PM

Song Moira quoted a verse from is in the modern form in a Scots songbook of 1779. Her verse appeared in a play of 1584.

For those and intermediate versions of the song see item ZN2498 in the broadside index at:

www.pbm.com/~lindahl/ballads/17thc_index.html


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