“Talking Union” by The Almanac Singers - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1941Album Chart of the Decade: 1940s

TJR says

“Now, boys, you've come to the hardest time, The boss will try to bust your picket line, He'll call out the police, the National Guard, They'll tell you it's a crime to have a union card, They'll raid your meetin', they'll hit you on the head, They'll call every one of you a goddam red, Unpatriotic, Japanese spies, sabotaging national defense, But out at Ford, here's what they found, And out at Vultee, here's what they found, And out at Allis-Chalmers, here's what they found, And down at Bethlehem, here's what they found, That if you don't let red-baiting break you up, And if you don't let stoolpigeons break you up, And if you don't let vigilantes break you up, And if you don't let race hatred break you up, You'll win. What I mean, take it easy, but take it” So sang Pete Seeger on Album # 2 as he addressed the proletariat on “Talking Union”, a belter of an album which did exactly what it said on the tin, laying down a reasoned argument for better pay and improved conditions for the working man. It was, unashamedly, a party political broadcast for the left and, perhaps inevitably, the group continued to receive press criticism in their homeland which had little to do with music. Time Magazine wryly noted: “The three discs of Talking Union, on sale last week under the Keynote label, lay off the isolationist business now that the Russians are laying it on the Germans.” Ever get the feeling that big brother’s watching you?

The Jukebox Rebel

A [03:00] 7.4.png The Almanac Singers - All I Want (Jim Garland) Folk
B [02:34] 7.5.png The Almanac Singers - Get Thee Behind Me, Satan (Millard Lampell, Lee Hays, Pete Seeger) Blues / Rhythm n Blues
C [02:56] 9.7.png The Almanac Singers - Talking Union (Millard Lampell, Lee Hays, Pete Seeger) Folk
D [02:10] 6.7.png The Almanac Singers - Union Maid (Woody Guthrie, Millard Lampell) Folk
E [02:20] 6.5.png The Almanac Singers - Union Train (Lee Hays) Folk
F [02:07] 8.9.png The Almanac Singers - Which Side Are You On? (Florence Reece) Folk

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