April 7, 2007

Phil Ochs Comments [See Post Above]

It turns out that posting a YouTube video, as opposed to just a link, inside one of these blog entries disabled the damn comments feature. I am far from being able to resolve such an issue technically myself, and disinclined to make one of my techie friends leap through hoops around this, so in response to some gripes from folks who wanted to comment on the Phil Ochs piece from last weekend, here's a workaround.

Just post your comments under this one. Simple, hunh...?

And to answer my own questions:

favorite Ochs tune--"Draft Dodger Rag"

favorite Ochs cover--"Cross My Heart" by Jim & Jean
(bonus question: What did Ochs have to do with this recording of his tune?)


UPDATE:

G. Frohman has pointed out, in a comment below, the respect with which They Might Be Giants regard Phil Ochs, I thought it only fitting to pop in the video of their version of Phil's "One More Parade."

Hey, G., I know it's only a cover, but nobody remembers the original anyhow...

4 comments:

Doug said...

This is my favorite Phil Ochs song:

Ringing of Revolution lyrics

G C G C
In a building of gold, with riches untold,
G C G - C
lived the families on which the country was founded.
G C G C
And the merchants of style, with their red velvet smiles,
G Em D
were there, for they also were hounded.
G C G C
And the soft middle class crowded in to the last,
G Em Bm
for the building was fully surrounded.
G C G D7 G
And the noise outside was the ringing of revolution.

Sadly they stared and sank in their chairs
and searched for a comforting notion.
And the rich silver walls looked ready to fall
As they shook in doubtful devotion.
The ice cubes would clink as they freshened their drinks,
wet their minds in bitter emotion.
And they talked about the ringing of revolution.

We were hardly aware of the hardships they beared,
for our time was taken with treasure.
Oh, life was a game, and work was a shame,
And pain was prevented by pleasure.
The world, cold and grey, was so far away
In the distance only money could measure.
But their thoughts were broken by the ringing of revolution.

The clouds filled the room in darkening doom
as the crooked smoke rings were rising.
How long will it take, how can we escape
Someone asks, but no one's advising.
And the quivering floor responds to the roar,
In a shake no longer surprising.
As closer and closer comes the ringing of revolution.

Softly they moan, please leave us alone
As back and forth they are pacing.
And they cover their ears and try not to hear
WIth pillows of silk they're embracing.
And the crackling crowd is laughing out loud,
peeking in at the target they're chasing.
Now trembling inside the ringing of revolution.

With compromise sway we give in half way
When we saw that rebellion was growing.
Now everything's lost as they kneel by the cross
Where the blood of christ is still flowing.
To late for their sorrow they've reached their tomorrow
and reaped the seed they were sowing.
Now harvested by the ringing of revolution.

In tattered tuxedos they faced the new heroes
and crawled about in confusion.
And they sheepishly grinned for their memoroes were dim
of the decades of dark execution.
Hollow hands were raised; they stood there amazed
in the shattering of their illusions.
As the windows were smashed by the ringing of revolution.

Down on our knees we're begging you please,
We're sorry for the way you were driven.
There's no need to taunt just take what you want,
and we'll make amends, if we're living.
But away from the grounds the flames told the town
that only the dead are forgiven.
As they crumbled inside the ringing of revolution.

doug said...

And this is my second favorite:

The Marines Have Landed on the Shores of Santo Domingo

Capo 2nd fret

Intro:Em
Em
And the crabs are crazy, they scuttle back and forth,
D Dsus D
The sand is burning
C D C D
And the fish take flight and scatter from the sight,
Em
their courses turning
As the seagulls rest on the cold cannon nest
D Dsus D
the sea is churning.
C D C D Em
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo.

The fishermen sweat, they're pausing at their nets, the day's a-burning
As the warships sway and thunder in the bay, loud the morning.
But the boy on the shore is throwing pebbles no more, he runs a-warning
That the the marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo.

The streets are still, there's silence in the hills, the town is sleeping
And the farmers yawn in the grey silver dawn, the fields they're keeping
As the first troops land and step into the sand, the flags are weaving.
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo.

The unsmiling sun is shining down upon the singing soldiers
In the cloud dust whirl they whistle at the girls, they're getting bolder.
The old women sigh, think of memories gone by, they shrug their shoulders.
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo

Ready for the tricks, their bayonets are fixed, now they are rolling
And the tanks make tracks past the trembling shacks where fear is unfolding
All the young wives afraid, turn their backs on the parade
with babes they're holding
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo

A bullet cracks the sound, the soldiers hit the ground, the sniper is callin'
So they open their guns, a thousand to one, no sense in stalling
He clutches at his head and totters on the edge, look how he's falling
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo

In the red plaza square, The crowds come to stare, the heat is gleaming
And the eyes of the dead are turning every head to the widows screaming
The soldiers make a bid, giving candy to the kids, their teeth are gleaming
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo

Up and down the coad, the generals drink a toast, the wheel is spinning
And the cowards and the whores are peeking through the doors
to see who's winning
But the traitors will pretend that it's getting near the end,
when it's beginning
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo

The crabs are crazy, they scuttle back and forth, the sand is burning
And the fish take flight and scatter from the sight, their courses turning
As the seagulls rest on the cold cannon nest, the sea is churning
The marines have landed on the shores of Santo Domingo

G. Frohman said...

I second Doug's pick of "Ringing of Revolution." Along with that I'd pick "Cops of the World" for the harshness of its polemic.

As for covers, I'm in general not a big fan of them as I think they so rarely compare favorably with the original. So instead let me list my favorite Phil Ochs reference in a song. That would be "The Day," off of They Might Be Giants' first, eponymous album. The lyrics in their entirety are as follows:

The day Marvin Gaye and Phil Ochs got married
The trees all waved their giant arms
And happiness bled from every streetcorner
And biplanes bombed with fluffy pillows

Jimmy Higgins said...

Hey, G., check out the update I just put up on this post to beef up the TMBG/Ochs linkage...