Listening to some old anti-war songs trying to get some inspiration to write a poem for Rayne’s & VO’s special edition on Sloggers on War , when I came to this one, written in 1973 by the Five Man Electrical Band (a Canadian group). The song was released on an album called Sweet Paradise , no longer in the catalogues. When I heard it, I started to cry: This song is as pertinent to the world today as it was thirty years GO. The song is called I’m a Stranger Here. The words in black are sung by a Martian-sounding guy, and the brash response in blue by the smug citizens of Earth:

well I’m a stranger here on this place called Earth
and I was sent down here to discover the worth
of your little blue planet third from the Sun
c’mon and show me what you’ve done

we’ve got the aeroplane, we got the automobile,
we got skyscraping buildings made of glass and steel
we got synthetic food that nearly tastes real
and a little white pill that makes you feel
a whole lot better when you get out of bed
you take one in the morning for the long day ahead
we got everything everybody needs to survive
surely the good life has arrived

I think your atmosphere is hurting my eyes
and your concrete mountains are blacking out the skies
now i don’t say that you’ve been telling me lies
but why do I hear those children’s cries?
I’m a stranger here – I’m just looking around
I see the aeroplanes carrying the bombs
why you even found people to drop them on
you know you can’t keep what you take by force
but it’s only my first impression of course
I’m a stranger here

we got the rivers and the mountains and the valleys and the trees
we got the birds in the sky we got the fish in the sea
we got the…..

oh you crazy fools don’t you know you had it made?
you were living in paradise
but take it from one who knows
the gates of heaven can close
I only pray that you take my advice
because paradise won’t come twice
well I’m a stranger here on this place called Earth
and I was sent down here to discover the worth
of your little blue planet third from the Sun
I think I’ll go back home where I come from

The melody is excellent for a ’70’s anti-war song, and the instrumental guitar riffs between the ‘voices’ of the conversation are awesome. Since it’s out of circulation, I can’t imagine anyone objecting to me making it available to Sloggers, so until/unless someone objects to the posting, here’s a link to it in .mp3 format (3.4MB). Might even make good background listening while you read the special edition of VO.

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3 Responses to I’M A STRANGER HERE

  1. Very appropriate, and it’s well-written, too. I’d love to hear it. The easiest way I know of to post an .mp3 would be to upload the file to your server, and then just include a link to it on the page. That won’t stream it, but clicking on the link will let the visitor download it. Hope that helps :)

  2. Dave Pollard says:

    Kriselda: OK – did that. Seems to work. Put a Salon Stories page in between, in case people with slow connections want to think twice before downloading a 3.4MB file. Let me know what you think. -/- Dave

  3. Imagine says:

    ImagineImagine there’s no heaven,It’s easy if you try,No hell below us,Above us only sky,Imagine all the peopleliving for today…Imagine there’s no countries,It isnt hard to do,Nothing to kill or die for,No religion too,Imagine all the peopleliving life in peace…Imagine no possesions,I wonder if you can,No need for greed or hunger,A brotherhood of man,Imagine all the peopleSharing all the world…You may say Im a dreamer,but Im not the only one,I hope some day you’ll join us,And the world will live as one.

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