DJ 2020-09-02 SiriusXM Studio, New York City, NY

Work

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"Greetings, E Street Nation, friends, fans and listeners from coast to coast. Welcome to our Labor Day extravaganza. Today we are celebrating the American working man and woman, all the folks that keep our world spinning round and round. We opened with 'Fanfare for the Common Man' by Aaron Copland. Now this is The Great One, reminding us, one way or another, we're all working for the man."

"That was a great friend of mine, Joe Ely, the fabulous singer-songwriter rocker out of Texas. He's 'Working on the Highway'. And before that, of course, the voice of the great Roy Orbison. Let's send one to the working women out there."

"The mills that grind and grind, that grind out new steel and grind away the lives Of men.
In the sunset, their stacks are great black silhouettes against the sky.
In the dawn they belch red fire.
The mills, grinding out new steel.
"

"Grinding out new steel. That's Langston Hughes."

"'Rebel Girl'. Dudley Connell, Hazel Dickens and Tom Adams. A song by Joe Hill. And before that, 'Union Maid', with Woody Guthrie."

"Now born in 1879, Joe Hill was a Swedish-American labor activist and a member of the Industrial Workers of the World, better known as The Wobblies. He was dubiously convicted of a murder, and executed by firing squad on Nov. 19, 1915, at Utah's Sugar House Prison. This was his Last Will and Testament:"

"My will is easy to decide, for there is nothing to divide.
My kin don't need to fuss and moan, moss does not cling to a rolling stone.
My body? Oh! If I could choose I would want to ashes it reduce.
And let the merry breezes blow my dust to where some flowers grow.
Perhaps some fading flower then would come to life and bloom again.
This is my last and final will.
Good luck to all of you.
"

"Joe Hill."

"That is 'Badlands', live at Arizona State University, November 1980, the night after Ronald Reagan was elected president. Before that, The Clash's 'Clampdown' as performed by yours truly with Tom Morello and the E Street Band in Sunrise, Florida, April 29, 2014. And previous to that, the all-time classic 'Fight the Power', by Public Enemy."

"We stand in the rain in a long line waiting at Ford Highland Park for work.
You know what work is, if you're old enough to read this you know what work is, although you may not do it.
Forget you, this is about waiting, shifting from one foot to another, feeling the light rain falling like mist into your hair.
Blurring your vision until you think you see your own brother ahead of you, maybe ten places.
You rub your glasses with your fingers, and of course it's someone else's brother, narrower across the shoulders than yours but with the same sad slouch.
The grin that does not hide the stubbornness, the sad refusal to give in to rain, to the hours of wasted waiting, to the knowledge that somewhere ahead a man is waiting who will say, 'No, we're not hiring today', for any reason he wants to.
You love your brother, now suddenly you can hardly stand the love flooding you for your brother, who's not beside you or behind or ahead because he's home trying to sleep off a miserable night shift at Cadillac so he can get up before noon to study his German.
Works eight hours a night so he can sing Wagner, the opera you hate most, the worst music ever invented.
How long has it been since you told him you loved him, held his wide shoulders, opened your eyes wide and said those words, and maybe kissed his cheek?
You've never done something so simple, so obvious, not because you're too young or too dumb, not because you're jealous or even mean or incapable of crying in the presence of another man, no, just because you don't know what work is.
"

"That is 'The Ghost of Tom Joad', by Rage Against the Machine. And prior to that, 'What Work Is', by the poet Philip Levine. And this is the Queen of Disco, Donna Summer."

"She works hard for the money. I had the pleasure of writing a song and doing a session with Donna and Quincy Jones in the mid-eighties. She was absolutely lovely. I originally wrote 'Cover Me' for her, and then Mr. Landau heard it and, doing his duty as my manager, advised me to keep it. So I wrote a song, 'Protection', for her, and recorded it with her. Good…., but no 'Cover Me'."

"This is Valerie June with 'Workin’ Woman Blues'."

"All right, that's 'Piss Factory', from 1974, by my beautiful friend Patti Smith and Richard Sohl. One of the best songs about factory work I've ever heard. And now, from my man John Mellencamp, terrific American songwriter, this is 'Pink Houses'."

"On this Labor Day, we have to pause and to think of the millions of Americans who have been displaced and left jobless by the coronavirus. There is little as painful as to be without productive work. So for this Labor Day, we send our prayers up for a healthy working nation, in the coming days, months and years ahead."

"This is Peter Gabriel with 'Don't Give Up'."

"I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear.
Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong.
The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam.
The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work.
The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat.
The deckhand singing on the steamboat deck.
The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench.
The hatter singing as he stands.
The wood-cutter's song, the ploughboy's on his way in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown.
The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife at work, or of the girl sewing or washing.
Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else.
The day what belongs to the day, at night the party of young fellows, robust, friendly.
Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.
"

"Walt Whitman."

"That's our show for today, folks. Until we meet again, stay strong, stay healthy, stay safe, and have a wonderful Labor Day."

By Bruce Springsteen via E Street Radio.
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