KATE & ANNA MCGARRIGLE lyrics - Work Song

KATE & ANNA MCGARRIGLE
"Work Song"

Back before the blues were blue
When the good ol' songs were new
Songs that may no longer please us
'Bout the darkies, about Jesus
Mississippi minstrels color of molasses
Strummed their banjos to entertain their massas
Some said garbage, others cried art
You couldn't call it soul, you had to call it heart
Backs broke bending digging holes to plant the seeds
The owners ate the cane and the workers ate the weeds
Put the wood in the stove, the water in the cup
You worked so hard that you died standing up

When I was a little thing
Papa tried to make me sing
Home Sweet Home and Aura Lee
These were songs that my daddy tought me
Camptown Races and Susannah Don't You Cry
Gentle Annie still brings a tear to my eye
Label it garbage, label it art
You couldn't call it soul, you had to call it heart

Backs broke bending digging holes to plant the seeds
The owners ate the cane and the workers ate the weeds
Put the wood in the stove, the water in the cup
You worked so hard that you died standing up

Sing me songs of days gone by
Make me laugh, make me cry
Break my female heart in two
Sing me songs that say "I love you"
Lower your eyes, raise your hand to your breast
Sing me one about the sun setting in the west

Backs broke bending digging holes to plant the seeds
The owners ate the cane and the workers ate the weeds
Put the wood in the stove, the water in the cup
You worked so hard that you died standing up

Wood's in the stove, water's in the cup
You worked so hard that you died standing up