Saturday, September 06, 2008

Wreck of the Party of Lincoln

Wreck of the Party of Lincoln
adapted from
Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald
Original music and lyrics ©1976 by Gordon Lightfoot
livicated to the 29-man crew
these lyrics creative commons attribution pls

The legend lives on from Superior on down:
the Republican Nat'n'l Convention
in 2008, late summer of hate,
days after the mile-high love-in.
With a load of "folklore", twenty-thousand times more
than the party of Reagan held empty,
that good party crew was a bone to be chewed
when the "Gales of November" came early.
The new cap'n's name was J S McCain (III),
a Panamanian-registered vet'ran.
A naval bombardier, he was a prisoner
who'd ditched his first wife for an heiress.
He said he didn't know how many homes he owned
but his staff would get back to us later.
And sometime that week when he picked out his veep
came the wreck of the party of Lincoln.
His first running mate was governor of a state
where the moose and caribou frolic.
Her privilege was to kill them to get a cheap thrill.
Her voice was like nails on a blackboard.
Palin was the pride of the born-ag'in side,
coming down from some town in Alaska.
As governors go, she was younger than most,
with a pregnant unmarried teen daughter.
Consulting some firms with political terms,
she left fully loaded for Dayton.
And later that day when the teleprompter rolled,
could it be the North Slope they were drillin'?
The wind in the wires made a tattle-tale sound
as the waves broke over the levees.
And ev'ry man knew, as the captain did too
'twas the ghosts of Katrina come callin'.
The dawn came late and the party had to wait
when Hurricane Gustav came slashin'.
When afternoon came it was drivin' rain
in the face of a hurricane west wind.
When Monday night came the networks got on deck sayin'.
"Fellas, it's too rough t' feed ya."
At seven P.M. the main speaker caved in; he said,
"Fellas, I'll phone it in later!"
The pollster mailed in he had polls comin' in
so they sent Mister Cheney to Georgia.
And later that night when the moon was outta sight
came the wreck of the party of Lincoln.
Does any one know why the black waters flow
from Saint Paul to the city of N'Orleans?
On the streets of Saint Paul the cops make a haul
rounding up passers-by and protesters.
In a big musty hall in the town of Saint Paul,
called the "Xcel Energy Center"
the Blackberries chime ringing twenty-three times
for each speech scheduled in the new lineup.
"Democracy Now" never matters somehow
to the "Homeland Security" goon squads.
In "pre-emptive arrests" citing "anarchists"
they arrested 400 "protesters".
The legend lives on from Superior on down
to the mouth of the great Mississippi.
Lake Pontchartrain never cares for Bush's brain
when the gales of November come early!

Notes: This music came to me in the morose atmosphere of the start of the Republican National Convention. It was lucky that that expression even has the right syllable count -- if you reduce National (Nash+nul) to 2 syllables. A few lines occurred to me over the past few days and I wrote up some more for my amusement this afternoon. I was trying to have 14 stanzas(?) like the original but I ran over so delete your least favorite one, mix and match, substitute words, credit me as co-lyricist if you record this. I left the numbers in. This music must be deep in my brain. I thought nobody over 40 or 36 or so would remember it, since it was a 1976 song about a 1975 wreck, but the Dandy Warhols recorded a cover of it. I'd like to see the Dandys or Gordon Lightfoot or better yet, "Gordon Lightfoot and the Dandy Warhols" performing the 2008 Electoral Rewrite version of this song, live, in concert.

Music video:

2008 live Gordon Lightfoot version:

Gordon Lightfoot MySpace

Dandy Warhols cover

Original lyrics: 1, 2

The Republican Party Convention:

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