Thursday, October 25, 2007

Hadda be playing on your jukebox

Yeah, this should be playing on your jukebox, if it hasn't already. "Hadda Be Playing On The Jukebox" is a poem by american poet and activist Allen Ginsberg that Rage Against frontman Zack de la Rocha sometimes recites live during their show, with the band providing quite dramatic musical background. We're all used to being amazed by the pure raw energy of RATM shows, and I'm not just throwing those words around like they're usually thrown, but this I always felt takes it up a notch. It's a great poem, greatly recited over great music. Music can't change a lot, generally, it can try and act like it can, but there's usually no permanent effect. Not this. This is fuel for the permanently postponed revolution. If I were told to pick 1 band I'd pay almost anything (I can afford) to see live, the words "Rage Against the Machine" would fly out of my mouth before I'd even realize I'm uttering them.
And next time you're looking at Malevich paintings or Andy Warhol prints, scratching your head and going "wtf is art, dude?", drop everything, listen to this song and thank your brotha Li. Look no further, friend, this is what art is. Or should be.



HADDA BE PLAYING ON THE JUKEBOX

Written by Allen Ginsberg in 1975
Performed by Rage Against the Machine

It had to be flashin' like the daily double
It had to be playin' on tv
It had to be loud mouthed on the comedy hour
It had to be announced over loud speakers

The cia and mafia are in cahoots

It had to be said in old ladies' language
It had to be said in american headlines

Kennedy stretched and smiled and got double crossed by lowlife goons and agents

Rich bankers with criminal connections

Dope pushers in cia working with dope pushers from cuba working with big time
syndicate tampa, florida

And it had to be said with a big mouth

It had to be moaned over factory foghorns
It had to be chattered on car radio news broadcasts
It had to be screamed in the kitchen
It had to be yelled in the basement where uncles were fighting

It had to be howled on the streets by newsboys to bus conductors
It had to be foghorned into new york harbor
It had to echo onto hard hats
It had to turn up the volume in university ballrooms

It had to be written in library books, footnoted
It had to be in the headlines of the times and the mind
It had to be barked on tv
It had to be heard in alleys through ballroom doors

It had to be played on wire services
It had to be bells ringing
Comedians stopped dead in the middle of a joke in las vegas

It had to be fbi chief j. edgar hoover and frank costello syndicate
Mouthpiece meeting in central park, new york weekends,
Reported time magazine

It had to be the mafia and the cia together starting war on cuba,
Bay of pigs and poison assassination headlines

It had to be dope cops in the mafia
Who sold all their heroin in america

It had to be the fbi and organized crime working together
In cahoots against the commies

It had to be ringing on multinational cash registers
World-wide laundry for organized criminal money

It had to be the cia and the mafia and the fbi together
bigger than nixon
And bigger that war

It had to be a large room full of murder
It had to be a mounted ass- a solid mass of rage
A red hot head
A scream in the back of the throat

It had to be in kissinger's brain
It had to be in rockefellers' mouth
It had to be the central intelligence, the family, the agency mafia

One big set of gangs working together in cahoots

Hitmen
Murderers everywhere
Outraged on the make

secret
drunk
brutal
dirty
and rich

On top of a slag heap of prisons
Industrial cancer
Plutonium smog
Garbage cities

Grandmas' bed sores
fathers' resentment

It had to be the rulers
They wanted law and order
And they got rich on wanting protection for the status quo

They wanted junkies
They wanted attica
They wanted kent state
They wanted war in indochina

It had to be the cia and the mafia and the fbi

Multinational capitalists
Strong armed squads
Private detective agencies for the oh so very rich
And their armies and navies and their air force bombing planes

It had to be capitalism
The vortex of this rage
This competition
Man to man

The horses head in Capo's bed
The cuban turf competitions
hitmen
And gang wars across oceans

Bombing cambodia settled the score

white house pots and pans

A warning to mediterranean governments

The secret police have been embraced for decades

The nkbd and cia keep each other's secrets
The ogbu and dia never hit their own
The kgb and the fbi are one mind

Brute force and full of money
One mind, brute force, and full of money
One mind, brute force, and full of money
One mind, brute force, and full of money
One mind, brute force, and full of money

It had to be rich and it had to be powerful
They had to murder in indonesia 500000
They had to murder in indochina 2000000
They had to murder in czechoslovakia
They had to murder in chile
They had to murder in russia

And they had to murder in america

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

...please where can I buy a unicorn?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Tyler Rose said...

'cause nothing says legitimate artist more than a band with a fat Sony Epic Records recording contract reciting an anti-capitalism poem, right champ?

Li said...

it's not the means, it's the end.

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