Music Monday: 10 Songs for Labor Day

In honor of road-tripping MoJo intern Tim Murphy’s stop in Woody Guthrie’s hometown of Okemah, Oklahoma, we’ve loaded up a player with five of Woody’s most labor-oriented songs and matched them with another five commie pinko classics, including Gene Autry’s version of “The Death of Mother Jones.” As you enjoy the end of summer this fine Monday check out Josh Harkinson’s dispatch from coal country, West Virginia, where the memory of Mary Harris “Mother” Jones lives on despite Massey Coal CEO Don Blankenship’s rampant villainy. Click the video thumbnails to listen to each song and don’t forget to ask yourself the necessary question: What Would Woody Do?

 

  • Woody Guthrie – Pastures of Plenty
  • Woody Guthrie, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee – John Henry
  • Woody Guthrie – Union Burying Ground
  • Woody Guthrie – Blowing Down that Road Feelin’ Bad
  • Woody Guthrie – Jesus Christ
  • Mississippi John Hurt- Spike Driver Blues
  • Quilapayun – El Pueblo Unido Jamás Será Vencido
  • Gene Autry – The Death of Mother Jones
  • Pete Seeger – Which Side Are You On?
  • Merle Haggard – Working Man’s Blues

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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