Day 12: Celebration of the WinterTide

Today is the 12th and last day of Christmas.  Thanks to you who’ve been following along.  This last recording is from Alexander James Adams’ album WinterTide

Comparisons keep us at odds-
There’s room inside for all our Gods-
Embrace the things that we all share,
For then we find compassion there-
To those that thirst, you offer drink,
It’s not as hard as you might think!

Music Monday

I first heard this song in the spring of 2000, shortly after the police who shot Amadou Diallo were acquitted. I heard an audience recording and read a transcript of the lyrics (Springsteen fandom tends to share such things) and then I heard it live in New York.  Fans called it “41 Shots” or “the Diallo song”; its official title is “American Skin (41 Shots)”.

That was 14 years ago; the shooting of Amadou Diallo was 15 years ago.  When I first heard this song, I thought it (and the Diallo shooting & acquittal) was shameful legacy to a time past.  I was sheltered, or possibly in denial.  Now, I wish this song was no longer relevant.  But it is.  Still.

41 shots, and we’ll take that ride
‘Cross the bloody river to the other side
41 shots, cut through the night
You’re kneeling over his body in the vestibule
Praying for his life

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it a wallet, this is your life
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
No secret my friend
You can get killed just for living in your American skin

(41 shots)
(41 shots)
(41 shots)
(41 shots)

41 shots, Lena gets her son ready for school
She says, “On these streets, Charles
You’ve got to understand the rules
If an officer stops you, promise me you’ll always be polite
And that you’ll never ever run away
Promise Mama you’ll keep your hands in sight”

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it a wallet, this is your life
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
No secret my friend
You can get killed just for living in your American skin

(41 shots)
(41 shots)
(41 shots)
(41 shots)

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it in your heart, is it in your eyes
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)

41 shots, and we’ll take that ride
‘Cross this bloody river to the other side
41 shots, I got my boots caked with this mud
We’re baptized in these waters (baptized in these waters)
And in each other’s blood (and in each other’s blood)

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it a wallet, this is your life
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
It ain’t no secret (it ain’t no secret)
No secret my friend
You can get killed just for living in
You can get killed just for living in
You can get killed just for living in your American skin

 

Need a laugh?

This video from The Doubleclicks gave me one today.

Growing up isn’t fast
In fact it’s so slow you don’t see it happen
I turned around one day to find
That I worked a job & I had to file taxes

But I still like fun
And I still like games
And I still want to know all the dinosaur’s names

Dinosaurs were just really really big chickens
Growing up is just becoming a really big kid

(Full lyrics & downloads here.)

Music Monday

One of my favorite filk songs, “Uplift” by Andy Eigel, performed by Vixy & Tony.   Hopefully it’ll help you wake up today.

Also I’ve had emails about people who’ve become interested in Vixy & Tony after I posted about them. If that’s you, there’s an interview with them on YouTube. (Originally it was part of a longer interview that’s no longer there, but this short piece does include things like “Where did the name ‘Vixy’ come from?” and “How did you get into filk?” which is pretty nice.)