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- Tribute: Ballad of the Great Coulee Dam (The Grand Coulee Dam)
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Grand Coulee Dam
Background: Some of the words, images and tunes in these songs were recycled several times through the collection. This one works particularly well. The verse containing the line “…In the misty crystal glitter of that wild and windward spray…” is imagery worth an entire song by itself.
"Good Morning, Mister Sunshine!"
"Good morning, Man!" I'm just a stranger, travelin' 'cross y'r land;
Do y' need a good workhand
On your big Grand Coulee dam?
I'd like to settle down but I'm forced to ramble all o' my time,
I'd like to settle down with this wife and kids of mine;
But a place to settle down my family
Is a pretty hard place to find!
I like to work. I work every time I can!
I got a callous in the palms of both o' my hands!
This ramblin' around from town to town
Goes hard on a family man!
I said I like to work, I don't like to beg and steal!
The harder I'm a workin' the better it makes me feel!
But my wife and kid get juberous
Everytime they miss a meal!
I'm a hardrock man, I was born in a hardrock place!
Back in my home place I was a man of high degree!
Nobody with a triphammer
Can knock as big a hole as me.
This Columbia River
Rolls right down this line;
Columbia's waters taste like sparklin' wine;
Dustbowl waters taste like picklin' brine.
The money that I draw from workin' at your Coullee dam;
My wife will meet me at the kitchen door stretchin' out her hand;
She'll make a little down payment
On our forty acre tract of land.
We'll work along this river, I'll sing from sun to sun;
I'll walk along this grass and listen to the factory hum;
Look what I've done gone and done.
Take some sow from off this mountain, mix it with some wind and rain!
Take some metal from yer mountain, melt it up again;
Stir it up with powers from Coullee's dam,
And you've got a big sabre jet plane.
Take some water from this valley, mix it up with snow;
Take my ramblin' family rollin' down this road;
Mix it up with sunshine
And, man, you ought to see the green things grow!