June 3, 2008

More John Brown Music: "Move On Over Or We'll Move On Over You"

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I've been blogging about John Brown and music for the last two weeks, and suddenly "Move On Over Or We'll Move On Over You" came to mind. It's a rewrite of "John Brown's Body" folks used to sing in the Civil Rights Movement. I rummaged around through my bookshelves and found Everybody Says Freedom, a book highlighting the music of the Civil Rights movement by Pete Seeger and Bob Reiser. Turns out that folkie and activist Len Chandler wrote it for a 1965 commemoration of the raid on Harpers Ferry, held at Hunter College in NYC, and the official title is "The Movement's Moving On."

My favorite verse:

You conspire to keep us silent in the field and in the slum
You promise us the vote and sing us "We Shall Overcome"
But John Brown knew what Freedom was and died to win us some
That's why we keep marching on.

1 comment:

suspire said...

Good stuff.

Some kids (Lola) that print with us did a shirt for this recently.