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Joe Hill was sort of an early Woody Guthrie, circa 1915. He was a thorn in the side of business and his songs and actions helped bring awareness to organized labor. He was eventually arrested and framed for murder, tried, convicted and executed by firing squad.

Notice: the recording is slightly warbled. It was recovered in a fire, and was resuscitated.

lyrics

I lived a life so treasured
My name is Ol’ Joe Hill
I’ve long been dead and buried
But my memory lives still

It was on my 19th birthday
I’d sow my dreams I swore
But I had a mind for rambling
When my ship had made the shore

I saw the people’s hardships
Could not deny their plight
I wrote many a verses
That sustained them through the night

I went among the workers
Down at the copper mines
But the bosses that sit would have none of it
And against me they conspired

It was in the state of Utah
They carried me to jail
Framed and tried for murder
To be shot and buried there

And now I sit in prison
My time it isn’t long
Though I leave through great injustice
My spirit lingers on

credits

from Foundation for Tomorrow, released January 15, 2018
Michael Holland - guitar/vocals

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The Holland Brothers Carrboro, North Carolina

This is the official site for North Carolina musicians, and Jennyanykind members Michael and Mark Holland . Here you can listen to and purchase (if you wish) all of the recorded songs in Michael's solo catalogue, Mark's catalogue, Jennyanykind, and their collaboration, the Holland Brothers. ... more

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