Alexandra Bradbury

cheerfully subversive

Songs

Words and music to all songs by Alexandra Bradbury, except where noted below.

“Privatize It”

(2014): This earworm-parody goes out to all the teachers and postal workers:


Performed by Julian Gonzalez and Alexandra Bradbury at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. It’s a parody of “Call Me Maybe,” by Carly Rae Jepsen and Tavish Crowe.

“If The Workers Take a Notion”

(2011): verses and new melody by me, chorus lyrics by Joe Hill.


Performed at the Northwest Folklife Festival in Seattle, May 27, 2011. Here are some other recordings of the song:
audio (live) | lyrics & chords | video {Folklife, Seattle 2011) | video (Occupy the Music, Bend 2012) | video (Folkife, Seattle 2012)

“Power Concedes Nothing”

(2014): Paraphrased words to live by from Frederick Douglass:


Performed at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014.

“I’ll Organize”

(2012): Hummed this up while working on a union drive! It’s a parody of Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive,” by Freddie Perren and Dino Fekaris:


Performed at Northwest Folklife Festival, Bread and Roses concert, Seattle, May 28, 2012. Here’s another video (live) of the same song, October 18, 2014, at the People’s Voice Cafe in New York City.

“Alien Invaders”

(2008): Wait, what’s she talking about?


Performed at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. Here are some older recordings of the same song: intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords | another video (Occupy the Music, Bend 2012) | video (Folkife, Seattle 2012)

“The Talking EGT Blues”

(2012): About the longshore workers’ dramatic showdown with a giant global grain shipper in Longview, Washington:


Performed at the Voices of Occupy stage, Northwest Folklife Festival, Seattle, May 27, 2012.

“Always on My Mind”

(2014): A climate-themed parody of the country classic:


The original “Always on My Mind” is by Johnny Christopher, Mark James and Wayne Carson. Performed at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014.

“Hymn to Comparative Advantage”

(2008): Written after I read something especially infuriating on the often-infuriating editorial page of the New York Times:


Performed at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. Here are some older recordings of the same song: intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords | video (Folkife, Seattle 2012)

“Paved with Gold”

(2008):


Performed May 1, 2011, at the May Day rally and march for workers’ and immigrants’ rights in Portland, Oregon. Here are other recordings of the song: intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords | video (Folkife, Seattle 2012)

“Wouldn’t It Be Nice (If We Had Health Care)”

(2014): The Beach Boys meet single-payer:


Performed by Julian Gonzalez and Alexandra Bradbury at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. This is (of course) parody of the Beach Boys’ “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” by Brian Wilson, Tony Asher, and Mike Love.

“We’re Not Gonna Let ‘Em Take Our House

(2009): Because houses are for living in:


Performed at the Bread and Roses stage, Northwest Folklife Festival, Seattle, May 28, 2012.
Here are other recordings: intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords | VIDEO (Occupy the Music, Bend 2012)

“How Much Longer”

(2011): True stories of hospital workers I met on union organizing drives:


Performed at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. Here are some older versions of the same song: audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“One-Man Train Blues”

by freight train engineer and singer-songwriter J.P. Wright:


Hear more of J.P. Wright’s great songs at railroadmusic.org, read about the fight over one-person train crews here, and “join that good old RWU” here. Performed by Julian Gonzalez and Alexandra Bradbury at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. This song is a parody of “Fulsom Prison Blues,” by Johnny Cash.

“All the Union Ladies (Solidarity)”

(2014): Beyoncé, Julian, and I wrote this one for the 2014 Labor Notes Conference:


Performed by Julian Gonzalez and Alexandra Bradbury at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. Julian and I co-wrote the lyrics… It’s a (loose) parody of “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” by Christopher “Tricky” Stewart, Terius “The-Dream” Nash, Thaddis “Kuk” Harrell and Beyoncé. Here’s a video of us performing it at Labor Notes, April 6, 2014, in Chicago.

“The Foxes’ Fund for Henhouse Relief”

(2011): A parable:


Performed at the People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014. Here’s an older recording of the same song: audio (live) | lyrics & chords

Other Songs

“Nobody For President” (2011): audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Number 17 Bus” (2011): New words to Steve Goodman’s “City of New Orleans.”
audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Apocalyptic Song” (2009): audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Don’t Stay Home With Your Grandmother” (2009): based on a personal story someone told at a public meeting I attended in Portland. intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords | video (Folkife, Seattle 2012)

“End of an Affair” (2009): an anti-Wall Street song. intro | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“I Am Changing My Name to Wall Street” (2009): …and another. This one is an update of Tom Paxton’s “I Am Changing My Name To Chrysler.” Note: After making up these lyrics I discovered Tom Paxton has already made his own update! Hear Paxton’s “I Am Changing My Name To Fannie Mae” and more at tompaxton.com
intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Immigrant Workers on the Line” (2009): intro | audio (live) | lyrics & chords | video (Folkife, Seattle 2012)

“Life of Crime” (2009): intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Little Condos (2008): A friendly update-parody of Malvina Reynolds’ “Little Boxes.” intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Millionaires (2008): A song about retirement, made by writing new words to A. Frank Beddoe’s lovely “Copper Kettle.” The original song is about bootlegging in the Appalachians. intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Mother on the Phone” (2008): intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Robot Waiter” (2008): intro | audio (home) | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

“Heartbreak is Counterrevolutionary” (2008): my first song. intro | audio (home)g | audio (live) | lyrics & chords

Full Sets

People’s Voice Cafe, New York City, October 18, 2014: YouTube video playlist

Northwest Folklife Festival, Labor Panel Concert, Seattle, May 23, 2011: audio (live)

Northwest Folklife Festival, Labor Panel Concert, Seattle, May 23, 2009: audio (live)

Northwest Folklife Festival, Labor Panel Concert, Seattle, May 24, 2008: audio (live)

8 Comments»

  Jonathan Levy-Wolins wrote @

Hey,
I am a student at the Evergreen State College and would love you to play at the Evergreen State College. Is this possible? How can we make this happen. Please email me back at jonathanlw@pacbell.net
This request comes from the JFB,
Looking forward to hearing from you,
Jonathan Levy-Wolins

  New songs! « ET and the Boy wrote @

[…] Music […]

  Mara Adelman wrote @

Dear ET: I heard you play at Folklife a few weeks ago. I LOVE YOUR SONGS & SINGING. I am a professor at SU, would love to invite you to campus–will try to find some decent funding for you. I thought if you were in town, maybe visitng your parents, we could do something at Seattle University. I return in January 2010, that’s a long way away, but I wanted you to know I am very interested to bring you to campus–students aren’t very political … you’d be a great role model! Thanks for all your work and making your songs available. Enjoy, Mara

  Karen Newman wrote @

We met at Folklife. LOVED YOUR SET!
I asked if you would be interested in joining Anne Feeney on her tour, Sing Out For Single Payer Health Care.
I sent your link to Anne, and I thought she would contact you. She thought you were going to contact her. My bad. My appologies.
At least one night will be in Portland. If you are still interested, please contact her at:
anne@annefeeney.com
The entire schedule is posted on her site under “gigs.” Hope this message isn’t too late for you.

  Justin Gomez wrote @

Al, I enjoyed every single song you’ve written! I laughed at your quirky and witty lyrics until I teared up and danced in my cubicle (I’m at work) to the jaunty melodies. I am impressed and inspired by your dedication to and passion for the labor movement. I plan on downloading your music and sharing it with my friends and family. I think it would make an excellent Christmas present, ironically. Haha.

  saccadrop wrote @

I stopped by for a listen this morning. I really dig “Apocalyptic Song.” You rock.

  scott sands-gouner wrote @

ok. so sorry to invade your cyberspace, but i think you were that pretty girl who just found my wallet. i feel dorky about this but you are a fantastic person and i hope your act of kindness returns three fold. please e-mail me if i got the correct person, because you deserve a bottle of wine for your trouble at least.

  Bruce Morris wrote @

Hi there:

My name is Bruce Morris. I am the executive director of Human Dignity Coalition. I was there at Occupy the Music and loved your performance. I was the guy with the beard who came up to you and talked about an event HDC is having called HerStory, in celebration of Women’s History month. It is an open mic for performers who identify as female. I would love to have you sign up to perform a couple of songs!

I think your music and energy would make a great contribution to the evening. It will be March 22, from 7-10 at Broken Top Bottle Shop and Ale Cafe, on the College Way Circle. Don’t have it up on our website yet, but please email me below or call me at 541-385-3320 if you are interested.

ALSO! we put on the annual Bend Pride celebration June 9 from noon – 5. I would also like to talk to you about playing a 1/2 hour or so set there. Unfortunately, we would not be able to pay, but it should be a good audience and its a super fun event. It will be at RiverBend Park by the Old Mill in Bend.

Please let me know if you are interested in any of this. I really hope you are because I was very excited about your songs, music and your great energy.

Peace, Bruce


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