Tom Russell: Who's Gonna Build Your Wall?

I happen to think Tom Russell ranks among the greatest living American songwriters. Don't know him? You probably do, but know performances of songs by other people—typically his co-songwriters.

So why do I cite Russell and not Dave Alvin, Ian Tyson, or any of his other collaborators? Because Russell is the only thing all of those songs have in common, other than an inordianately high level of craft.

This is a pretty good protest song until the last two verses, which kick it up a notch:

We've got fundamentalist Muslims,
We've got fundamentalist Jews,
We've got fundamentalist Christians
They'll blow the whole thing up for you.

But as I travel around this big old world
there's one thing I most fear
and that's a white man in a golf shirt
with a cell phone in his ear.

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COMMENTS
Alan in Victoria's picture

"kick it up a notch?" That last verse is the lamest thing I've ever heard! LAME!

KBK's picture

Obviously Alan in Victoria does not mind shaming himself on national tv via his ignorance. Sadly..he remains unaware. Perhaps it is he that the song is written for...

Alan in Victoria's picture

Obviously KBK, etc, etc,

Alan in Victoria's picture

OK, now that I have a minute, kbg, you never talked to your kids on a portable communications device? Scared by sports wear at an early age, were you? Sorry, I was born white, can't/won't change that for you. And here is where the silly LAME! reference came from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqcRMUqUfVg So I don't think this song was written for me, but I probably think "You're so Vain" was written about me!

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