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Which Side Are You On?

Florence Reece


Lingua: Inglese

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Combien de temps encore?
(Tagada Jones)


miners


Ho pensato di proporre questo brano, visto che in questi giorni ricorre il 25° anniversario del grande sciopero dei minatori inglesi del 1984/1985.

Il testo originale fu scritto nel 1931 da una statunitense, Florence Reece, moglie di Sam Reece, uno dei leader del sindacato dei minatori di Harlan County, Kentucky, che aveva organizzato uno sciopero ferocemente represso dalla polizia e dagli sgherri della compagnia mineraria. La Reece scrisse la canzone proprio durante l’assedio della sua casa da parte dello sceriffo J. H. Blair e dei suoi uomini, che cercavano il marito Sam per farlo fuori o imprigionarlo.

Nel suo testo originale la canzone è stata interpretata da molti: The Almanac Singers, Pete Seeger, Dick Gaughan, Dropkick Murphys, Natalie Merchant… Nel 1984/1985, Billy Bragg la ripropose con parole diverse, per adattarla e dedicarla ad uno degli scioperi più lunghi e più duri della storia , quello dei minatori inglesi del National Union of Mineworkers, guidato da Arthur Scargill, che tra il marzo del 1984 e il marzo del 1985, per un anno intero, tenne testa alle compagnie, al governo Thatcher, alla polizia, ai provocatori, ai neonazisti con l’intento di impedire la chiusura delle miniere di carbone ed il licenziamento di oltre 20.000 lavoratori… Lo sciopero finì con la sconfitta dei minatori, ma resta una delle pagine più memorabili nella storia delle battaglie del movimento dei lavoratori.
Come all you good workers,
Good news to you I'll tell
Of how the good old union
Has come in here to dwell.

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

My dady was a miner,
And I'm a miner's son,
And I'll stick with the union
'Til every battle's won.

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

They say in Harlan County
There are no neutrals there.
You'll either be a union man
Or a thug for J. H. Blair.

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

Oh workers can you stand it?
Oh tell me how you can?
Will you be a lousy scab
Or will you be a man?

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

Don't scab for the bosses,
Don't listen to their lies.
Us poor folks haven't got a chance
Unless we organize.

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

inviata da Alessandro - 9/3/2009 - 11:43




Lingua: Italiano

Questa è la traduzione per la versione che Pete Seeger fa qui...



e che è la prima in questa pagina.
DA CHE PARTE STAI

Venite voi tutti lavoratori buoni,
Una buona notizia vi darò
Di come il buon vecchio sindacato
È venuto qui per sempre.

Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?

Il mio papà era un minatore,
E io sono figlio di un minatore,
E starò col sindacato
Finchè ogni battaglia sarà vinta.

Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?

Dicono che in Harlan County
Lì nessuno è neutrale.
Sarai un uomo del sindacato
Oppure, un delinquente per H. J. Blair.

Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?

Oh, lavoratori come potete sopportarlo?
Oh ditemi come è possibile?
Sarai un crumiro?
O sarai un uomo?

Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?

Non fate i crumiri per i padroni,
Non ascoltate le loro bugie.
Noi poveri, non abbiamo una possibilità
A meno che non ci organizziamo.

Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?
Da che parte stai?

inviata da Pozzoverde e A Iatta - 21/3/2012 - 21:25




Lingua: Inglese

La versione di Billy Bragg (scritta tra l'84 e l'85) e pubblicata in "Back to Basics" (1987).
WHICH SIDE ARE YOU ON?

This government had an idea
And parliament made it law
It seems like it's illegal
To fight for the union any more

Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?

We set out to join the picket line
For together we cannot fail
We got stopped by police at the county line
They said, "Go home boys or you're going to jail"

Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?

It's hard to explain to a crying child
Why her Daddy can't go back
So the family suffer
But it hurts me more
To hear a scab say Sod you, Jack

Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on, boys
Which side are you on?

I'm bound to follow my conscience
And do whatever I can
But it'll take much more than the union law
To knock the fight out of a working man

Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on, boys?
Which side are you on?

inviata da Alessandro - 9/3/2009 - 11:45


Tanto per rinfrescare la memoria, alcune foto dell'"UK miners' strike" (1984–1985). Si riferiscono in particolare alla famosa "Battle of Orgreave", cittadina del South Yorkshire dove, nel giugno del 1984, si tenne uno dei confronti più duri e sanguinosi tra gli scioperanti, organizzati nel NUM (National Union of Mineworkers) e la polizia:

m1

m2

m3

Alessandro - 9/3/2009 - 21:29


Dal bellissimo music blog di Sir Charlie Palmer, un montaggio di immagini a celebrare i 25 anni dal gramde Miner's Strike inglese...

25 Years Ago Today.....

Alessandro - 9/3/2009 - 21:41


Gli scioperi dei minatori statunitensi contro le pessime condizioni di lavoro e lo sfruttamento furono molto frequenti nel corso di tutto il XX secolo: The Coal Strike of 1902, Pennsylvania; The Ludlow massacre, Colorado, 1914; The Redneck War, West Virginia, 1920-21; The Herrin massacre, Illinois, 1922; The BESCO Strike, Nova Scotia, 1925, per citarne alcuni... Ad Harlan County, Kentucky, scioperi e mobilitazioni si susseguirono quasi ininterrottamente per quattro decenni, dal 1931 (anno in cui la Reece scrisse la sua celebre canzone) fino all'Harlan County War del 1973, tanto che la contea veniva comunemente indicata come "Bloody Harlan Country"...

Nel 1976, l'attivista e regista Barbara Kopple vinse l'Oscar per il miglior film documentario proprio con il suo splendido "Harlan County, USA" sulla lotta dei minatori contro la Duke Power Company...



Alessandro - 10/3/2009 - 14:49


Apprendo dalle note che accompagnano il disco "Talking Union and Other Union Songs", con Pete Seeger, The Almanac Singers e The Song Swappers (Folkways Records, 1955) che la seguente strofa di questa canzone:

"My daddy was a miner,
And I'm a miner's son,
And I'll stick with the union
'Til every battle's won."

è da attribuirsi ad una modifica ad opera degli Almanac Singers.
La strofa originaria della Reece era la seguente:

"My daddy was a miner;
he's now in the air and sun
He'll be with you, fellow workers,
until this battle's won."

dove "in the air and sun" significa che il minatore non era in galleria ma disoccupato perchè "blacklisted" dai padroni a causa del suo attivismo sindacale...

Alessandro - 9/3/2010 - 14:04


“Which Side Are You On?” is a miner's song written in 1931 in the midst of the bitter struggles of the miners in Harlan County, Kentucky. The mine owners, unyielding in their opposition to any unionization of the workers, carried on a campaign of violence and terror to smash the union. At least a dozen miners were killed by deputies hired by the operators, but none of the deputies were indicted. "Which Side Are You On?" was written during one of the many terroristic raids by the sheriff and his deputies on the miners’ homes. They came to the home of Sam Reece, one of the leaders of the National Miners’ Union, but he had been warned in time and escaped. They poked their shotguns everywhere, under the beds and into the closets, even into the piles of dirty linen, saearching for the miners' leader. When Reece's young daughters, aged 8 and 11, started crying, one of the deputies laughed and said: “What are you crying for? We don't want you. We're after your old man.” After the deputies had left, Mrs. Florence Reece, wife of the rank and file leader, was seething with indignation. She tore an old calendar off the wall, and on the back side wrote the verses of the great labor song, which she put to the tune of an old Baptist hymn she had known from childhood. The song was immediately picked up by the striking miners after it had been sung at the union hall by Mrs. Reece's two little girls. From Harlan County, it spread throughout the entire labor rnovement.”
[dalle note che accompagnano il disco “Talking Union and Other Union Songs”, Folkways Records 1955, con Pete Seeger, The Almanac Singers e The Song Swappers]

Alessandro - 31/3/2010 - 14:05




Lingua: Inglese

La versione di Dick Gaughan, trasferita in Gran Bretagna all'epoca del grande sciopero dei minatori del 1984/85.
Da "Live in Edinburgh" del 1985.
Come all of you good people
You women and you men
Once more our backs are to the wall
We're being attacked again

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

We've fought a million battles
To defend our hard-won rights
We're going to have to fight again
And I ask you here tonight

Thatcher sent MacGregor
To smash the NUM
And break the workers' unity
And I ask you once again

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

The Tories rant and tear their hair
And shout 'democracy'
But the kind the Tories have in mind
Is not for you or me

Their screaming about ballots
Is pure hypocrisy
If they care so much for ballots
What about the GLC?

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

By bully boys in uniforms
And thugs with riot shields
Our comrades' blood is being shed
But still they will not yield

It's time for a decision
And you really have to choose
Support the miners' struggle
Or the next in line is you

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

inviata da The Lone Ranger - 21/5/2010 - 10:13


“They say in Harlan County there are no neutrals there…”. A Haran County ti dicono: guarda che non si può essere neutrali. O fai il crumiro o stai col sindacato.. Insomma: la scoperta di una cosa che in qualche modo la nostra pubblicistica negava. Per usare una parola desueta, la lotta di classe. Negli Stati Uniti, paese dove si affermava che le classi non esistessero. Questo mi affascinò molto. E mi affascinò la relazione che esisteva tra una storia di conflitto sociale e una straordinaria ricchezza di patrimonio musicale, narrativo, di cultura orale. Quindi il fascino veniva proprio da questa idea di un luogo dove non solo c’erano state le lotte, ma queste lotte erano state raccontate con gli strumenti della cultura popolare e della cultura orale.

(Intervista ad Alessandro Portelli)

3/12/2010 - 23:08




Lingua: Italiano

La nuova versione di Ani DiFranco
WHICH SIDE ARE YOU ON

they stole a few elections,
still we the people won
We voted out corruption and
big corporations

we voted for an end to war
new direction
we ain't gonna stop now
until our job is done

come on all good workers
this year is our time
Now there some folks in washington
who cares what's on our minds

come one-come all voters
lets all vote next time
show 'em which side are you on now
which side are you on

which side are you on now
which side are you on
which side are you on now
which side are you on

which side are you on now
which side are you on
which side are you on now
which side are you on

30 years of diggin'
got us in this hole
the curse of reaganomics
has finally taken it's toll

lord knows the free market
is anything but free
it costs dearly to the planet
and the likes of you and me

i don't need those money lenders
suckin' on my tit
a little socialism
don't scare me one bit!

we could do a whole lot worse
than europe or canada
c'mon mr. president
c'mon congress make the law

which side are you on now
which side are you on
which side are you on now
which side are you on

they say in orleans parish
there are no neutrals there
there's just too much misery
there's too much despair

america who are we
now our innocence is gone
which side are you on now
which side are you on

too many stories written
out in black and white
c'mon people of privilege
it's time to join the fight

are we living in the shadow of slavery
or are we moving on
tell me which side are you on now
which side are you on

which side are you on boys
which side are you on
which side are you on boys
which side are you on
which side are you on boys
which side are you on
which side are you on now
which side are you on

my mother was a feminist
she taught me to see
that the road to ruin is paved
with patriarchy

so, let the way of the women
guide democracy
from plunder and pollution
let mother earth be free

feminism ain't about women
no, that's not who it is for
it's about a shifting consciousness
that'll bring an end to war

so listen up you fathers
listen up you sons
which side are you on now
which side are you on

which side are you on now
which side are you on
which side are you on now
which side are you on

so are we just consumers
or are we citizens
are we gonna make more garbage
or are we gonna make amends

are you part of the solution
or are you part of the con?
which side are you on now
which side are you on?

3/12/2010 - 23:15




Lingua: Inglese

Broadside #57, Aprile 1965

Note: This new set of words to the Kentucky miner's song of the 1930's, was brought to Broadside by Len Chandler in the fall of 1964 when he returned from a summer of activity in the Freedom Hovement in Mississippi. It was sung extensively there and recently by the Selma, Alabama, marchers

Tune: Which Side Are You On by Mrs. Florence
Come all you bourgeoise black men
With all your excess fat
A few days in the county jail
Will sure get rid of that. (Spoken: Everybody now)

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

Come all you northern liberals
Take a Klansman out to lunch
But when you dine, instead of wine.
You should serve non-violent punch.
(Won't you tell me now) .

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

Come all you rough.tough bullies
Forget your knives and guns
Non-violence is the only way
The battle can.be won. (I want to know now)

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

Come all you high-toned college girls
Pronounce your final "g's"
But don't forget your grandma
She's still scrubbin on her knees. (You'd better
tell me now)

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

You need not join our picket line
If you can't stand the blows
But join your dimes with dollars
Or be counted with our foes. (I really want to
know now)

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

Come all you uncle toms,
Take that hankie from your head .
Forget your fears and shed a tear
For the life of shame you've lead. (You'd better
tell me now)

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

I heard that Governor Wallace (Johnson)
Just up and lost his mind
And he bought a case of Han Tan
And joined the picket line. (What you talkin I
about)

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

They say the Ku Klux Klan
Just up and dyed their sheets
And now they sing "Oh, Freedom"
Everytime they meet.

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

I've been walkin' so long
I've put blisters on the street
live caught the Freedom fever
And it's settled in my feet.

Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?
Which side are you on?

inviata da dq82 - 4/11/2016 - 11:14


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