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Origin: Two Good Arms (Charlie King)

Related threads:
Lyr Req/Add: Our Life Is More Than Our Work (King) (8)
Lyr Add: Two Good Arms (Charlie King) (2)
Lyr/Chords Req: Two Good Arms (Charlie King) (5)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
Two Good Arms [Charlie King]


reeebop 29 Dec 99 - 11:58 PM
Rick Fielding 30 Dec 99 - 12:03 AM
DonMeixner 30 Dec 99 - 12:05 AM
DonMeixner 30 Dec 99 - 12:06 AM
katlaughing 30 Dec 99 - 12:25 AM
katlaughing 30 Dec 99 - 12:33 AM
Jon Freeman 30 Dec 99 - 01:41 AM
Pete Peterson 30 Dec 99 - 10:41 AM
lamarca 30 Dec 99 - 02:50 PM
katlaughing 30 Dec 99 - 03:29 PM
Marymac90 30 Dec 99 - 03:53 PM
GUEST,gryall@cwnet.com 13 Oct 02 - 12:53 AM
Joe Offer 13 Oct 02 - 02:17 AM
GUEST 14 Dec 09 - 05:15 AM
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Subject: two good arms?
From: reeebop
Date: 29 Dec 99 - 11:58 PM

i learned this song a while ago from a friend and i was wondering if anyone had any background information about it.

the chorus is something like and all who know these two good arms know i never had to rob or kill i can live by my own two hands and live well... and all my life i have struggled to rid the earth of all such crimes.

and also if you have any suggestions for harmonies or alternate parts i would really appreciate it.


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 12:03 AM

Hi. It's the story of Sacco and Vanzetti, who were two anarchists executed in Boston. Woody Guthrie did a whole album of songs about them. Should be lots of stuff on the "net".

Rick


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 12:05 AM

Hey Bop,

I think Fred Small wrote this song. Its about Sacco and Vanzetti. Two anarchist who were very likely framed and executed for the murder of some people. Their political and ethnic persuasion made them easy targets for Kangaroo justice in the first quarter of this century. Check out their names in the encyclopedia.

Don


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 12:06 AM

Bob ,

No sooner did I send it as Fred Small as the author when I'm sure I am wrong. Now I think its Charlie ???? who wrote the song.

Don


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 12:25 AM

There is a whole bunch of info on them at a special site for the 70th anniversary of their execution. Just click here.

If you do a search with their names on Yahoo, there is a ton of info and I noticed several books have been published on them.

kat


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 12:33 AM

On a CD of Woody Guthrie's called Ballads of Sacco and Vanzetti, there is a song called Two Good Men. Wondering if it is the same one?


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 01:41 AM

I've just had a look at my Christy Moore LP with Sacco and Vanzetti on and he gives a reference of Folkways FH 5485A for the Woody Guthrie album.

Jon


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: Pete Peterson
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 10:41 AM

The song is in Rise Up Singing and since I'm posting from work I can't remember the author except that he's written some other good ones.(sure it's NOT Woody, who Did write "italian red wine") What makes it remarkable is that he wrote it using Vanzetti's speech to the judge,( following the rhetorical question "Have you any reason why the sentence of death should not be passed upon you?" ) as a prose poem. When my daughter got interested in the case she found a book which had a photocopy of the page in the receipt book where Vanzetti the fish peddler sold eels to the wholesaler at a time and place that made it impossible to be committing a robbery in Dedham. Nuts. When she said "but why wouldn't they listen" I didn't have an answer and still dont.


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: lamarca
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 02:50 PM

Andy Irvine also wrote a good song about Sacco and Vanzetti, called "Facing the Chair". It's on Patrick Street's first album. The contention is that Judge Webster Thayer wanted to make an example of them as part of his political aspirations - in his viewpoint, they were Communists/anarchists and so deserved to die whether they were guilty of murder or not...truly a miscarriage of justice.

On NPR this morning, they had a feature about lesser-known events of the past century. One listener suggested the Sacco and Vanzetti case, saying that an informal poll showed it to be an age-dividing event. All the people who had heard of the case were 40+ years old; no-one younger seemed to know who they were...


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 03:29 PM

And, here I am, 46 yrs old, sheltered little Western gyrl (not!) and I'd not heard of them until this thread.

Joan Baez had a good one that I found on Yahoo, yesterday, too.


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Subject: Lyr Add: TWO GOOD ARMS (Charlie King)
From: Marymac90
Date: 30 Dec 99 - 03:53 PM

"Two Good Arms" is by Charlie King, of CT, a singer, very good songwriter, member of the (disbanded) group Bright Morning Star, and one of the founders of the People's Music Network, (which will have it's winter gathering Jan. 28-30 in Queens, NYC). "Two Good Arms" is on his albums "Somebody's Story" (Rainbow/Snake) and "TWO GOOD ARMS Songs of the Hopes and Struggles of Working People" (on Vaguely Reminiscent sounds VRS7011). It's also on "Lifeline" by Holly Near and Ronnie Gilbert, and "Freedom Peacefully" by Roy Bailey.

Charlie wrote "TWO GOOD ARMS" in 1977, for the 50th anniversary of the execution of Sacco and Vanzetti. An exerpt from the song, which is on page 219 of Rise Up Singing, follows.

Who will remember the hand upon the switch, that
Took the lives of two good men in the service of the rich?
Who will remember the one who gave the nod, or the
Chaplain standing near at hand, to invoke the name of God?

CHORUS: All who know these two good arms
Know I never had to rob or kill
I can live by my own two hands, and live well
And all my life I have struggled
To rid the earth of all such crimes

We will remember this good shoemaker
We will remember this poor fish peddler
We will remember all the strong arms and hands
That never once found justice in the hands that rule this land

Last chorus:
And all who knew these two good men
Knew they never had to rob or kill
Each had lived by his own two hands, and lived well
And all their lives they had struggled
To rid the earth of all such crimes
And all our lives we must struggle
To rid the earth of all such crimes

Mary McCaffrey


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Subject: RE: two good arms?
From: GUEST,gryall@cwnet.com
Date: 13 Oct 02 - 12:53 AM

I almost remember the tune to "Two Good Arms" - can you tell me where to find it? Gail Ryall


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Subject: ADD: Two Good Arms (Charlie King)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 13 Oct 02 - 02:17 AM

Well, I wasn't satisfied with any of the transcriptions we've had, so I'll try my own. This is from the Carry It On songbook, by Pete Seeger & Bob Reiser.
-Joe Offer-

TWO GOOD ARMS
(Charlie King)

Who will remember, the hands so white and fine
That touched the finest linen, that poured the finest wine?
Who will remember, the genteel words they spoke
To name the lives of two good men, a nuisance or a joke?

CHORUS
All who know these two good arms
Know I'd never had to rob or kill
I can live by my own two hands and live well
And all my life I have struggled
To rid the earth of all such crime.



Who will remember Judge Webster Thayer,
One hand on the gavel, the other resting on his chair?
Who will remember the hateful words he said,
Speaking to the living in the language of the dead?
CHORUS

Who will remember the hand upon the switch
That took the lives of two good men in the service of the rich?
Who will remember the one that gave the nod
Or the chaplain standing near at hand to invoke the name of God?
CHORUS

We will remember this good shoemaker,
We will remember this poor fish peddler,
We will remember all the strong arms and hands
That never once found justice in the hands that rule this land.

FINAL CHORUS
And all who knew these two good men
Knew they never had to rob or kill.
Each had lived by his own two hands,
And they lived well.
And all their lives they had struggled
To rid the earth of all such crime.
And all our lives we must struggle
To rid the earth of all such crime.


© 1978, Pied Asp Music (BMI)

The MIDI is here (click). I know this song by a recording by Holly Near - her tune is just a bit different. I find both versions of the tune difficult to sing. I sing with Gail, so I'll make sure she gets a copy.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Origin: Two Good Arms (Charlie King)
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Dec 09 - 05:15 AM

Who will remember Judge Webster Thayer
One hand on the gavel, the other resting on the chair
Who will remember the hateful words he said
Speaking to the living in the language of the dead

chorus
And all who know these two good hands
Know they never had to rob or kill
I can live by these two good hands and live well
And all my life I have struggled
To rid the world of all such crimes.

Who will remember the hand upon the switch, that
Took the lives of two good men in the service of the rich
Who will remember the one who gave the nod, or the
Chaplain standing near at hand to invoke the name of God

chorus

We will remember this good shoemaker
We will remember this poor fish peddler
We will remember all the strong arms and hands
That never once found justice
in the hands that rule this land

last chorus-
And all who knew these two good men
Knew thay never had to rob or kill
Each had lived by his own two hands
and they had lived well
And all their lives they had struggled
To rid the earth of all such crimes
and all our lives we must struggle
to rid the earth of all such crimes

From

http://74.125.155.132/search?q=cache:FM0732XaYBIJ:twogoodhands.wordpress.com/why-two-good-hands/+Who+will+remember+the+hand+upon


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