Georgia Man

I’m finally putting another song on this site.  I suppose it’s taken me so long because this is probably my least favorite of my songs!  To be brutally honest, I think the lyrics are cheesey, the chord progression is adolescent, and the melody lacks…  melody!

With that said, I remember something my sister said about the song once.  She pointed out that I wrote the song while in high school about racism and asked me how many teens were really present to the continuing challenge we face in race relations?

I really appreciate that compliment, and it’s for that reason that I’ll post the song here even though I don’t like it.

I wrote this song in the late ’80s, probably close to ’87, and I recorded it with a new 3rd verse at around the same time as Lie to Me.  It’s a song that remembers Martin Luther King and has a little bit of a U2 influence (although it’s hard to find).

Here are the lyrics:

A white man burns a cross in a black man’s yard
A mexican is stabbed; we hear and we laugh hard
Five asian children are shot without regard
To the family that feels a stab of pain deep inside their heart

A man came down from Georgia
With peace on his mind
But a burned down house and a gunshot wound
Are the only way we’re kind

Martin Luther King – he’s a man we all knew well
A man who taught that violence is not blessed, it’s hell
But still the white man claims that he’s the best race in the land
He’s got to learn that if he says that crap war is close at hand

A man came down from Georgia
With peace on his mind
But a burned down house and a gunshot wound
Are the only way we’re kind

White cops beat down a black man; King’s suing for a couple o’ mil…
Black men take down an Arab and they videotape for a thrill
I’ll cry as I watch the news tonight ’cause every night is always the same
We’re killing each other, every man ane brother; we’re the only ones to blame

A man came down from Georgia
With peace on his mind
But a burned down house and a gunshot wound
Are the only way we’re kind

Ok.  So, do you see what I mean about cheesey lyrics?  Actually the third verse isn’t entirely horrible.  Just a little horrible.  The hook references MLK directly, and the second verse and the bridge reference a school shooting I remember hearing about in Stockton where five kids got shot.

I suppose what I was uptight about most was how we as humans divide ourselves and often act out that division in violent ways.  I do remember that I played this song for something in High School (without that third verse) and a friend who is African American told me how touched she was about its social awareness.  I suppose that’s something…

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