Harvest Land

Language: English

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Related Songs

The Popular Wobbly
(T-Bone Slim [Matti Valentin Huhta])
Un giorno di festa
(Steinn Steinarr)

Testo di autori non identificati, indicati con le sigle "TD and H.". Alcuni ne attribuiscono la paternità a Matti Valentin Huhta, aka T-Bone Slim (1880–1942), poeta, cantautore, vagabondo e agitatore sociale statunitense, di origine finlandese.

T-Bone Slim

Sulla melodia del popolare gospel Beulah Land (1876)
Nel libretto di canti degli Wobblies dell'IWW (Industrial Workers of the World), il "Little Red Songbook", edizione del 1923.

Little Red Songbook

In 1915, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) established a branch union, the Agricultural Workers' Organization (AWO). The AWO organized temporary harvesters, known as “harvest stiffs,” in railroad yards, migrant camps, and shelters. At its height in 1917 the AWO had more than 70,000 members, but like the IWW it was undermined by President Woodrow Wilson’s wartime attack on dissent and by local vigilante organizations. The AWO, like its parent organization, used folksongs, stories, and poetry to spread its message to migrants. One such song, “Harvest Land,” by “TD and H,” first appeared in the Little Red Songbook, a free booklet that IWW members regularly distributed to organizers and workers. Like most IWW songs, it set satirical lyrics to popular or traditional tunes, in this case “Beulah Land.” "Harvest Land“ attacked ”John Farmer" for recruiting laborers with false promises, and it urged workers to withhold their labor until they received better wages.
(History Matters)

Una canzone che mi ha riportato alla mente le immagine de "I giorni del cielo" ("Days of Heaven"), capolavoro scritto e diretto nel 1978 da Terrence Malick...
The harvest drive is on again,
John Farmer needs a lot of men;
To work beneath the Kansas heat
And shock and stack and thresh his wheat.

Oh Farmer John—Poor Farmer John,
Our faith in you is over-drawn.
—Old Fossil of the Feudal Age,
Your only creed is Going Wage—
“Bull Durum” will not buy our Brawn—
You’re out of luck—poor Farmer John.

You advertise, in Omaha
“Come leave the Valley of the Kaw.”
Nebraska Calls "Don’t be mis-led.
We’ll furnish you a feather bed!"

Then South Dakota lets a roar,
"We need ten thousand men—or more;
Our grain is turning—prices drop!
For God’s Sake save our bumper crop."

In North Dakota—( I’ll be darn)
The “wise guy” sleeps in “hoosiers” barn
—Then hoosier breaks into his snore
And yells, “It’s quarter after four.”

Oh Harvest Land—Sweet Burning Sand!
—As on the sun-kissed field I stand
I look away across the plain
And wonder if it’s going to rain—
I vow, by all the Brands of Cain,
That I will not be here again.

Contributed by Bernart Bartleby - 2020/1/11 - 00:06

B.B. - 2020/1/11 - 00:07

As I pointed out here a few years ago, T-Bone Slim was originally Matti Valentin Huhta, not Valentininpoika which is the Russian way of expressing names adding a patronym (Valentinovich) and most certainly not Valentinpoika without the possessive ending like the name is written on the English Wikipedia page.

Juha Rämö - 2020/1/11 - 09:20

Sorry, Juha Rämö.
Due to Wikipedia.
I ask to the Evil Admins to correct.

B.B. - 2020/1/11 - 15:00

@ Bernart Bartleby

No reason really to be sorry, B.B. Mine was just a little linguistic remark since our job here is a linguistic one.

Juha Rämö - 2020/1/12 - 19:22

@ Juha Rämö

I don't think it's just a linguistic job here, not for me... I don't know a single foreign language, even the italian so and so...

B.B. - 2020/1/12 - 22:20

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