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The Environmental Justice Song Collection

Bee – My Baby

(Original by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich, Phil Spector, new words by Hali Hammer)          Download printable version (revised 4/29/14)

You buzzed into my garden – it needed you so
You spread around the pollen, flitting to and fro
You have the gentle power
To help create the flower
And now it's come – the hour for us to help you, oh

We want you bee, my bee, my bee baby
Stay, bee, my darling, my bee, my bee now – woah, ho ho ho

Your species now endangered - It is a sin
Cause Bayer keeps producing Clothianidin
The beekeeper and farmer
Have figured out the harmer
We need you, little charmer, for eternity

We want you bee, my bee, my bee baby
Stay bee, my darling, my bee, my bee now – woah, ho ho ho ho
Bee, my - my bee, my bee baby
Stay bee, my darling, my bee, my bee now – woah, ho ho ho ho

Bye Bye Coal

(Tune of Bye Bye Love by Felice and Boudleaux Bryant /recorded by the Everly Brothers)
New words by Bill Pinkham and Bonnie Lockhart
         
Download printable version (created 4/19/17)

CHORUS:
Bye bye coal
Bye bye filthiness
Hello healthiness
Bye bye to coal, goodbye
(sing chorus twice)

Old Phil Tagami, he had a plan
He'd transport coal trains through West Oakland
But the city council told him "No way!"
That coal in Utah is there to stay

So Phil is suing our coal-free town
But his coal lawsuit is going down
'Cause we want Oakland to be coal free
And we believe in democracy

So Phil Tagami, your plan's a bust
We'll have new jobs here without coal dust!
So drop the lawsuit, and be a sport
Let's bring some clean jobs to our home port

De Colores

Traditional, Spain, sixteenth century, adopted as the anthem of the United Farmworkers          Download printable version

De colores, de colores se visten los campos en la primavera.
De colores, de colores son los pajaritos que vienen de afuera.
De colores, de colores es el arco iris que vemos lucir.
Y por eso los grandes amores de muchos colores me gustan a mi. (Repeat)

Canta el gallo, canta el gallo con el quiri, quiri, quiri, quiri, qui, la gallina,
La gallina con el cara, cara, cara, cara, cara, los polluelos,
Los polluelos con el pio, pio, pio, pio, pi.
Y por eso los grandes amores de muchos colores me gustan a mi. (Repeat)

Do It Now

Tune: Bella Ciao New Words by Sing for the Climate
Download printable version

We need to wake up
We need to wise up,
We need to open our eyes and do it now, now, now!
We need to build a better future
And we need to start right now!

We’re on a planet
That has a problem,
We’ve got to solve it, get involved
And do it now, now, now!
We need to build a better future
And we need to start right now!

No point in waiting,
Or hesitating,
We must get wise, take mo more lies
And do it now, now, now!
We need to build a better future,
And we need to start right now!

Exxon Lied

Tune, Skip to My Lou; Words, Nancy Schimmel
Download printable version

Chorus: Exxon lied, what'll we do? (3x)
Throw them into prison.

When did they know what they knew,
Since about 1982
But they kept making CO2,
Throw them into prison.

The scientists in their employ
Told them what they would destroy
But profits rose, and they said "Oh boy!"
Throw them into prison.

Chorus

It's they who built our funeral pyre,
The temperature keeps going higher
Liar, liar, pants on fire,
Throw them into prison.

They're lower than the lowest slime
Racketeering is a crime,
Department of Justice, it is time
To throw them into prison.

Chorus

Gee, Governer Jerry

To the tune of the chorus of Officer Krupke (chorus only) Music: Leonard Bernstein, Words: Nancy Schimmel  
Download printable version
 
Gee, Governor Jerry, We’re really upset
At all the tons of water that the frackers will get.
You say shorter showers
Will help with the drought,
We sing in the shower, cut it out!
Cut it out!, cut it out!
Oh, there is no doubt
We’ve got to cut the fracking out.
 Gee, Governor Jerry, I like me a bath,
If frackers take it from me, well, that raises my wrath.
I use by the gallon,
They use by the lake,
I say that fracking’s a mistake.
A mistake, a mistake, 
Oh, you make me ache,
You know that fracking’s a mistake.
 Gee, Governor Jerry, they’re making a mess,
The frackers spoil the water and they leave us with less.
The aquifer’s shrinking, 
We're drinking their slop,
Governor Jerry, make it stop!
Make it stop, make it stop,
Make them close up shop,
We all demand you make it stop.

Growing Climate Movement

(Music: Proud Mary by John Fogerty, new words: Bonnie Lockhart)
Download printable version

If you go down to Lake Merritt ( the demo)
Bet you're gonna find some people who care
People need the power
Got to seize the hour
New York City, Oakland and everywhere!
Big Oil can't keep burnin' We got the tide a'turnin'
Growin', Growin, Growin' climate movement (X2)

We can make jobs in the city
We don't have to burn those fossil fuels!
There is wealth aplenty
Use it for the many
One percent won't keep on makin' rules
Big Oil can't keep burnin' . . . .

We got imagination
We can build up new technology
With a common vision
Make a just transition
Workplaces with real democracy.
Big Oil can't keep burnin'. . .

It Isn't Nice

Words and Music by Malvina Reynolds; © 1964 Schroeder Music Company, renewed 1993. Last two verses by Joel Landry, edited by Nancy Schimmel.        Download printable version

It isn’t nice to block the doorway,
It isn’t nice to go to jail,
There are nicer ways to do it,
But the nice ways always fail.
It isn’t nice, it isn’t nice,
You told us once, you told us twice,
But if that is Freedom's price,
We don’t mind.

It isn't nice to carry banners
Or to sit in on the floor,
Or to shout our cry of Freedom
At the hotel and the store.
It isn’t nice, it isn’t nice,
You told us once, you told us twice,
But if that is Freedom's price,
We don’t mind.

We have tried negotiations
And the three-man picket line,
Mr. Charlie didn't see us
We didn’t even cross his mind.
Now our new ways aren’t nice
When we deal with men of ice,
But if that is Freedom's price,
We don't mind.

When the corporation bandits
Tanked our economy,
Did you say it wasn't proper?
Did you stand for you and me?
You were quiet just like mice,
Now you say we aren’t nice,
And if that is freedom's price,
We don't mind.

It isn’'t nice to get arrested,
It isn’t nice to make demands,
Or to gather by the thousands,
No matter what the law commands,
It isn’t nice, it isn’t nice,
Well, thanks for your advice!
‘Cause if that is freedom’s price,
We don't mind.

Just a Dinosaur ( Can't Get Easy Oil)

Words by Bonnie Lockhart; chorus to Hard Ain't It Hard, (Woody Guthrie); verse to New River Train, traditional
Download printable version

It's hard, ain’t it hard, ain’t it hard,
Ya can’t get easy oil anymore,
It's hard, ain’t it hard, ain’t it hard, great God!
‘Cause fossil fuel is just a dinosaur.
Darlin’ you can't drill in the sea, Darlin’ you can't drill in the sea,
If you drill in the sea, just remember BP!
Darlin’ you can’t drill in the sea.

Darlin’ you can’t pump the Tar Sands, (2x)
If you pump the Tar Sands you pollute the heartlands,
Darlin’ you can’t pump the Tar Sands.

Darlin’ you can’t drill the North Slope, (2x)
If you drill the North Slope people rise up and say “Nope!”
Darlin’ you can’t drill the North Slope.

Darlin’ you can’t take it from Iraq, (2x)
If you take it from Iraq there is major blow back,
Darlin’ you can’t take it from Iraq.

Darlin’ you can’t frack natural gas, (2x)
If you frack natural gas, that’s a gas we ought to pass!
Darlin’ you can’t frack natural gas.

Darlin’ you can’t drill anywhere, (2x)
You can’t drill anywhere, there’s too much carbon in the air,
Darlin’ you can’t drill anywhere.

Let's Frack

Music: Get Back (Lennon-McCartney) New words: copywrite 2013 Bernard Gilbert        Download printable version
Chorus
Let’s frack let’s frack,
Let’s frack like fracking is the best.
Let’s frack, let’s frack,
Let someone else clean up the mess!

Big Oil sees the fields, and Big Oil wants a pipeline,
Big Oil’s fracking everywhere.
Big Oil knows that fracking causes global warming
Big Oil really doesn’t care.

Chorus

Don’t talk about the steam that comes out of your faucet,
Don’t talk about the toxic salts,
Don’t talk about the solvents leaking in the water,
Lets frack along an earthquake fault!

Chorus

Talk economic growth, don’t mention conservation,
Say our nation must expand,
Say that there are jobs depending on this fracking
Salute the flag, strike up the band.

Chorus (2x)

No Coal Trains

(to the tune of Sixteen Tons by Merle Travis; new words by Bonnie Lockhart)      Download printable versionfile creation date 4/19/17

Chorus:
Better leave that coal where the sun don't shine
Don't load that train, don't dig that mine
Tagami better listen, 'cause we're throwin' down
We don't want coal here in Oakland town
Tagami's got a plan that's no damn good
Movin' coal through the neighborhood
Movin' coal, makin' our kids sick
Sendin' it to China just to get rich quick

Now some people say it'll bring us wealth
But they'll make money and we'll lose health
Chokin' on dust while the planet fries
We don't want coal and we don't take lies

Now some people say, we can't keep 'em out
They got the money and they got clout
But we got something that they can't see:
People's power and energy!

Patriotic Meal

Tune: Wabash Cannonball
New words: Nancy Schimmel

Download printable version (created 6/14/15)
       

I got the world on a spoon and I've got nature in my lap
When blueberry and strawberry seasons overlap,
The taste is just like heaven but the color scheme's the deal
Just add organic yogurt, got a patriotic meal.

I'm loyal to my country, to its forests and its lakes,
From the bighorn sheep and polar bears to the frogs and toads and snakes,
The toddlers in the playground, the workers in the field
Who pick the juicy berries in my patriotic meal.

So when the corporations spray pesticides around
They should know they're treading on my sacred ground
I sing this song to tell them just the way I feel
I don't want any poison in my patriotic meal.

I don't want the CO2 that comes from shipping food,
Chilean berries do not fit my patriotic mood
Nor do I want your Driscolls, till you get that union seal
I want local union labor in my patriotic meal.

Put It on the Label

(Do Lord Remember Me); New words byNancy Schimmel
 Download printable version (revised 1/17/12) 

What is this I’m eating? I want to know.
What is this I’m eating? I want to know.
What is this I’m eating? I want to know.
So I won’t eat GMO.

Put it on the label, I want to know.
Put it on the label, I want to know.
Put it on the label, I want to know.
So I won’t eat GMO

I won’t be your guinea pig, I want to know (3x)
And I won’t eat GMO

Gonna make Monsanto tell me, I want to know. (3x)
So I won’t eat GMO

I got an allergy to ignorance, I want to know. (3x)
So I won’t eat GMO

Put it on the label, I want to know. (3x)
So I won’t eat GMO

Red River Frack

Sung to Red River Valley, new words by Mainstreet Moms & Occupella        Download printable version

Please don’t frack up our land in the Valley,
We must leave all that oil in the ground,
Why not use other ways to get power?
Lots of sunshine and wind all around!

Come & sing for this land if you love it,
Come and rally with thousands to say,
“Gov'ner Brown, you had best pay attention,
We must ban fracking, starting today!”

Occidental Petroleum wants profits,
They don’t care if they poison our state,
But if all of us shout out, “No Fracking!”
We can ban it before it’s too late!

Standing Rock

To the tune of "Yellow Rose of Texas"
New words by Nancy Schimmel & Bonnie Lockhart

Download printable version

The Dakota Access Pipeline
Is a pipeline straight from hell
And where it meets the river
They're bound to have a spill
A lot of Sioux from Standing Rock
Are standing 'gainst the pipe,
They know the safety promises
Are just a lot of hype.

It's a company in Texas
That threatens Standing Rock
Kelcy Warren owns it
Or he owns a lot of stock
This Warren gave Republicans
A million and a half
So in every bill in Congress
He'll own a paragraph

You oilmen down in Texas
It's time to get a clue
Your oil thing is over,
Quit belching CO2
The tribes have come to tell you
From Oneida to Lanai
Leave the oil in North Dakota
And kiss fossil fuel goodbye

Take Me Out of the Big Banks (No DAPL Divest)

(Take Me Out to the Ball Game)
Betsy Rose and Nancy Schimmel        
Download printable version

Take me out of the big banks
Take me out of their game
The credit union can have my dough
I'll cut up my credit cards, pay as I go
And it's root root root for the small banks
Give them our business and thanks
And it's 1, 2, 3 million more and we'll close big banks

Take me out of the big banks
Citibank for a start
They put our money in pipes for oil
That leak in the water and poison the soil and its
Root, root root for the people
Standing up to their claim,
And it's 1, 2, 3, put them out
It's a new ball game!

Valero Oil Trains

Tune: Yellow Rose of Texas       
Words: Nancy Schimmel and Bonnie Lockhart

Download printable version

Valero Oil of Texas 
Is not the oil for me,
They want to ship explosive crude
But the people disagree
‘Cause the tank cars are not safe enough
For the North Dakota crude
And if a few tip over,
You know we will be screwed.
 
They plan to send a hundred cars
Each and every day
To their big refinery
In Benicia by the Bay,
This crude makes more pollution
Than we already get
They think they can roll over us
But they ain't seen nothin’ yet.

Valero Oil of Texas 
It’s time to get a clue
That fracked-out oil's a menace
Besides, there’s CO2,
So in every city on the route
And every farm and town
Let's all stand up and holler
“Leave the oil in the ground!”

We Are Gonna Stop the Fracking

Tune: I've been Working on the Railroad, new words by Jack Lucero Fleck, additional words by Occupella
Download printable version

We are gonna stop the fracking, all the livelong day,
We are gonna stop the fracking in Californ-i-a
Can’t you see the climate changing? Dirty oil your time is done,
Can’t you see the clean solution? Water, wind and sun!

Water wind and sun, water wind and sun,
Water wind and sun, you time has come!
Water wind and sun, water wind and sun,
Dirty oil your time is done!

Someone’s in the backroom with big oil,
Someone’s in the backroom we know---
Someone’s in the backroom with big oil, Sacramento, just say “No!”

And we say
Fee, fie, fracking’s got to go, fee fie, fracking’s got to go-o-o-o
Fee, fie, fracking's got to go, Sacramento, just say “No!”

What Shall We Do with a Drunken Sailor

Stephen Zunes remembered the Exxon Valdez verse from somewhere and Nancy Schimmel wrote the rest.
Download printable version file revision date 5/8/14

What shall we do with a drunken sailor? (3x)
Earlie in the morning?

Make him the skipper of the Exxon Valdez (3x)
Earlie in the morning.

What shall we do with the tar sands crude? (3x)
Earlie in the morning?

Put it on a train that runs through Berkeley, (3x)
Earlie in the morning.

What shall we do with the fracking water
Earlie in the morning?

Pump it underground and cause an earthquake
Earlie in the morning.

What shall we do with the toxic coal ash?
Earlie in the morning?

Dam it up and spill it in the river
Earlie in the morning.

What shall we do with the carbon profits
Earlie in the morning?

Buy a yacht and a politician
Earlie in the morning.

Zipper Songs

Download printable version

AIN'T GONNA LET NOBODY TURN ME AROUND

1. No fracking
2. Big O-il
3. No 1%
4. No Corporations
5. No lobbyists

COME & GO WITH ME TO THAT LAND

1. There's no fracking
2. Solar power
3. No fossil fuel
4. There's Climate Justice
5. There's Conservation
6. Jobs & Justice
7. Come & ride with us on the bus

WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED

1. No more oil dependence, we shall not. . .
2. No more fracking
3. Fund green jobs
4. Subsidize solar
5. Fossil fuel's a dinosaur
6. Chevron pay your taxes
7. No, no, no nos moveran (x2) Como un arbol, firme junto al rio, no nos moveran
8. Green Power to the people

WE'LL BE ENDING OIL DEPENDENCE
To the tune of She'll Be Comin' Round the Mountain
1. We'll be ending oil dependence when we come
2. Saying "No" to fracking
3. Subsidizing solar
4. Funding green jobs
5. Curbing our consumption
6. Riding in the bike lanes
7. Challenging the power
8. Making peace on earth