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Bruce Cockburn Gig Pt 2

September 10th, 2003 | No Comments | Categories: Uncategorized |

Part two of the Cockburn gig experience – this time at The Forum in Kentish Town, London, which is an OK venue, but not ideal. Still, Bruce and Julie were on top form, played enough material that was different from last night to make it all well worthwhile, including a couple of real surprises, including ‘Planet Of The Clowns’ from his early 80s album, Trouble With Normal – a great song.

Julie Wolf was on sterling form once again – more fine piano playing and atmospheric organ stuff.

Interesting to see SOOO many people I knew at the gig (probably 30-40 I knew by sight, and 25-30 by name), and we also had the now obligatory Bruce gig recognition thingie – ‘are you that bass player bloke? I saw you at Greenbelt, and recognised your beard’… :o)

Following the gig was a low key meet ‘n’ greet backstage – very nice to get a chance to compliment Julie Wolf on her marvellous playing, and say hi to Bruce, though whether he remembered me as the guy who interviewed him for guitarist mag 4 years ago is anybody’s guess.

Anyway, one of the other songs that Bruce did tonight that was left out of last night’s set was Call It Democracy – a marvellous insightful raging rant about the onward march of western economic and militaristic hegemonic practice – so good, that I’ve copied the lyrics here (there are a couple of naughty words in them, so if such things upset you for some reason, page down past the song)…

Padded with power here they come
International loan sharks backed by the guns
Of market hungry military profiteers
Whose word is a swamp and whose brow is smeared
With the blood of the poor

Who rob life of its quality
Who render rage a necessity
By turning countries into labour camps
Modern slavers in drag as champions of freedom

Sinister cynical instrument
Who makes the gun into a sacrament —
The only response to the deification
Of tyranny by so-called “developed” nations’
Idolatry of ideology

North South East West
Kill the best and buy the rest
It’s just spend a buck to make a buck
You don’t really give a flying fuck
About the people in misery

IMF dirty MF
Takes away everything it can get
Always making certain that there’s one thing left
Keep them on the hook with insupportable debt

See the paid-off local bottom feeders
Passing themselves off as leaders
Kiss the ladies shake hands with the fellows
Open for business like a cheap bordello

And they call it democracy
And they call it democracy
And they call it democracy
And they call it democracy

See the loaded eyes of the children too
Trying to make the best of it the way kids do
One day you’re going to rise from your habitual feast
To find yourself staring down the throat of the beast
They call the revolution

IMF dirty MF
Takes away everything it can get
Always making certain that there’s one thing left
Keep them on the hook with insupportable debt

There you go – what a great song. It’s from the album ‘World Of Wonders’, which is great, and there’s also a magic version on Bruce Cockburn Live.

Soundtrack John Coltrane, ‘Coltrane'; Paul Motian Trio, ‘Live At The Village Vanguard'; The Amazing Bud Powell Vol 1.

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