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Jimmy Cliff — The Harder They Come
Album: The Harder They Come
Avg rating:
7.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1695









Released: 1972
Length: 2:59
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Well, they tell me of a pie up in the sky
Waiting for me when I die
But between the day you're born and when you die
They never seem to hear even your cry

So as sure as the sun will shine
I'm gonna get my share now, what's mine
And then the harder they come
The harder they fall, one and all
Ooh, the harder they come
The harder they fall, one and all

Well, the oppressors are trying to keep me down
Trying to drive me underground
And they think that they have got the battle won
I say forgive them Lord, they know not what they've done

'Cause, as sure as the sun will shine
I'm gonna get my share now, what's mine
And then the harder they come
The harder they fall, one and all
Ooh, the harder they come
Harder they fall, one and all

And I keep on fighting for the things I want
Though I know that when you're dead you can't
But I'd rather be a free man in my grave
Than living as a puppet or a slave

So as sure as the sun will shine
I'm gonna get my share now, what's mine
And then the harder they come
The harder they fall, one and all
Ooh, the harder they come
Harder they fall, one and all
Hey, the harder they come
Harder they fall, one and all
What I say now
What I Say now

What I say now
What I say, one time
The harder they come, the harder they fall, one and all
The harder they come, the harder they fall, one and all
Comments (196)add comment
I give it a 9, but is that a matter of pure nostalgia?  Maybe.  But I'm sure it's at least an 8 without the nostalgia factor.
One of my few 10s, possibly in part due to 'non-musical' reasons. pxd
Good song! If you like it, please see my two buddies performing it on Tybee Island beach on one of our "Beach Sundays"
The stop motion effect was not intentional but it did add to the video!
           
                     



 Jota wrote:
It's post fact days and Trumps been living that particular style all his life.

 
                              


                                                      May I mumbo dog space to the banana patch?
.
.
.
.

It's post fact days and Trumps been living that particular style all his life.
 kylieh wrote:

Yowza, trying to understand how this sentiment finds itself listening to RP at all. But in these post-Trump days I will be patient and tolerant.

 
LOL!  

 Except it ain't Post-Trump.  President Trump is just getting started.  

 
P.S.  This is a great song.   
 dragon1952 wrote:
Reminds of early 70's top 40 crap

 
Yowza, trying to understand how this sentiment finds itself listening to RP at all. But in these post-Trump days I will be patient and tolerant.
 Steely_D wrote:
DON'T
FUCK
WITH
ME!

 
HAHAHA!!
 wlpendley wrote:


Well Dr Steevo.  Did you try it ?

 
I've been using this technique for 4 years now, works like a charm!
DON'T
FUCK
WITH
ME!
played this "album" to death...such a classic!
 Proclivities wrote:

It was from the early 1970s, it was not Top 40.

 
And it was not crap....
I've never heard a reggae tune I didn't like :)
Reggae = PSD
 dragon1952 wrote:
Reminds of early 70's top 40 crap

 
It was from the early 1970s, it was not Top 40.
Reminds of early 70's top 40 crap
Terrific artist and cut.  More anaMarley reggae, please.
 DoofusGeezer wrote:


Yes - let's hear Peter Tosh! Saw him in concert once - absolutely awseome

 
I second that
 treatment_bound wrote:

Wow!  Nice Find!

I've seen a sh**-load of photos of "The Golden God" in his hey-day through the years, but never this one.
I think we finally found the true inspiration for this cut (if there was any doubt):



 

Same shirt plus Physical Graffiti promo billboard as time-stamp.

He was probably listening to Jimmy Cliff right around the Houses of the Holy / Physical Graffiti recording sessions (which were a bit mixed together, if I recall correctly)




Wonderful....on a cool night ....UK
Perfect song to hear on this sunny day in California!
Great segue Bill Jimmy to Jimmy. {#Drunk}
 Proclivities wrote:
plant

 
Wow!  Nice Find!

I've seen a sh**-load of photos of "The Golden God" in his hey-day through the years, but never this one.


I think we finally found the true inspiration for this cut (if there was any doubt):


Mmmm... sky pie!  
I was most fortunate to see him recently.  What a gift to this world he is!   He is magical and so completely in tune with his inner being.  He was as spry as a 25 year old and only speaking of positive vibrations.   He loved it and we loved him  {#Good-vibes}
I have heard this way too many times to enjoy it anymore.... some radio programmers (not Bill, of course) use this as the default reggae song, apparently unaware that he recorded other  songs. I enjoyed the movie lo those many years ago.
 neuticle wrote:
The best soundtrack , possibly ever.

 
totally agree!  Maybe embarrassing to admit, but my number 1 dishwashing album.
 drsteevo wrote:

I am going to try to remember this advice next time that happens to me.  I will let you know if it works.

 

Well Dr Steevo.  Did you try it ?
 Dinges,_the_Dude wrote:
Nice, but I like Joe Jacksons version best...

 
Eeekkk!!!   JJ's good, but not that good!
Just noticed date. Must of been 70's  (memory not so good. {#Stupid})
Good memories of travelling fairs in the 60's..   They'd play this on the big rides.
 
plant
I'd rather be a free man in the grave,
than living as a puppet or a slave! 

{#Dancingbanana_2}
I love this entire album. This movie introduced me to reggae even before Bob Marley. Pressure Drop!
Nice, but I like Joe Jacksons version best...
Oh yeah!!!
 wlpendley wrote:
This song has a very special, magical quality:  It will erase any unwanted song that is "stuck in your head".  I'm serious.  If you ever find some crap song playing on a "closed loop" over and over in your mind, just hum a few bars of this.  Presto!  You are free  :-)
 
I am going to try to remember this advice next time that happens to me.  I will let you know if it works.
Great tune for a Friday.  Thanks Bill, for accounting for the International Date Line in you play list!
The best soundtrack , possibly ever.
This song has a very special, magical quality:  It will erase any unwanted song that is "stuck in your head".  I'm serious.  If you ever find some crap song playing on a "closed loop" over and over in your mind, just hum a few bars of this.  Presto!  You are free  :-)
OH YEAH!!!!{#Bananasplit}
Respect to Tim Armstrong for giving props to and old school master. Here's a clip of Jimmy covering a Rancid song. {#Cheers}
Roots Reggae.....and everything else in between.....this is why RP rules.  
Ahhhh. Nice classice Reggae. Always nice to hear this.
I love you Jimmy Cliff!
 Sasha2001 wrote:
Ok, so I just got back from a wedding in Turks and Caicos (living on ramen now) in the Caribbean and all they played was Jimmy Cliff everywhere. Now I know there's a handful of reggae songs that get trotted out for American tourists but there's so much good reggae out there, let alon island music that never gets played in America except on West Indian radio stations in cities like New York.

Maybe RP could put aside the Jimmie Cliff and Bob Marley for a while and pull out the Peter Tosh, Burning Spear, and Toots among others.
 
No worries, they are in the rotation too.  But if you think any of them are/were as sublimely influential as Marley, well, its not even close.
Good early roots music. Worth an 8 for the pioneer aspect.
 Sasha2001 wrote:
Ok, so I just got back from a wedding in Turks and Caicos (living on ramen now) in the Caribbean and all they played was Jimmy Cliff everywhere. Now I know there's a handful of reggae songs that get trotted out for American tourists but there's so much good reggae out there, let alon island music that never gets played in America except on West Indian radio stations in cities like New York.

Maybe RP could put aside the Jimmie Cliff and Bob Marley for a while and pull out the Peter Tosh, Burning Spear, and Toots among others.
 

Yes - let's hear Peter Tosh! Saw him in concert once - absolutely <##!!***>awseome
 ziakut wrote:
Good segway from Jimi Hendrix...!! I certainly hope we don't get like a Bob Marley track after this...I really hope not...HOPE NOT!
 
Me too, brother (or sister, as the case may be).

This is reggae before the stoners and the Church of Marley got hold of it.  
 Rabid_Engineer wrote:
I can match all but one of your achievements - I have not yet seen the movie. I shall, though.

One more to add: see him sing it in his rec room accompanied only by a bass player on the video archive at EMP in Seattle. Sings his heart out even then. Converted my too-cool-for-school teenager to a Jimmy Cliff fan on the spot.

Good segway from Jimi Hendrix...!! I certainly hope we don't get like a Bob Marley track after this...I really hope not...HOPE NOT!
What an awesome song!
Ok, so I just got back from a wedding in Turks and Caicos (living on ramen now) in the Caribbean and all they played was Jimmy Cliff everywhere. Now I know there's a handful of reggae songs that get trotted out for American tourists but there's so much good reggae out there, let alon island music that never gets played in America except on West Indian radio stations in cities like New York.

Maybe RP could put aside the Jimmie Cliff and Bob Marley for a while and pull out the Peter Tosh, Burning Spear, and Toots among others.
 OlafofIsland wrote:
Absolutely one of my favorite albums. Got it on vinyl, got it on cd, got it in MP3, got it memorized in my brain. Tried to watch the movie without subtitles and couldn't understand a word but sang all the songs. {#Cheesygrin} 
 
I can match all but one of your achievements - I have not yet seen the movie. I shall, though.

Absolutely one of my favorite albums. Got it on vinyl, got it on cd, got it in MP3, got it memorized in my brain. Tried to watch the movie without subtitles and couldn't understand a word but sang all the songs. {#Cheesygrin} 
scrubbrush wrote:
cool movie. amazing that the Jamaican speaking accent (Jimmy's too) is so strong as to require subtitles (done in white on the VHS version i saw in the 80s) but singing is clear as any other English speaker.
Not just an accent - the patois (not Rastafarian English, a completely different subject) spoken by the majority of Jamaicans differs from English sentence structure and uses words and combinations of words that aren't found in US mainland English. It's very prosaic and beautiful to hear. Living nearby, I visit and work often enough to understand somewhat when spoken to, but probably will never attempt speaking. Any Jamaican that deals with tourists or works in business can switch in a heartbeat.

This takes me back to high school. Unfortunately, Jimmy's message was at, erm, 'variance' with my life lessons at that place (think Lord of the Flies). The harder they came, the worse the beating to come, so the faster you ran :(

 Synth80s wrote:
 I like Joe Jackson's remake of this song better than the original because it's a bit more rockin' and, well, I just like anything JJ touches.

 
Well then, you just may like this extreme close-up of Joe wailing on a sax in '82.

 Albert1967 wrote:
Cool album cover.
 
Reminds me of the Super Fly poster.

 Albert1967 wrote:
Cool album cover.
 

cool movie. amazing that the Jamaican speaking accent (Jimmy's too) is so strong as to require subtitles (done in white on the VHS version i saw in the 80s) but singing is clear as any other English speaker.
Cool album cover.
I'm not a big fan of reggae, but I've always appreciated this tune.  That said, I'll admit my sacreligious thought: I like Joe Jackson's remake of this song better than the original because it's a bit more rockin' and, well, I just like anything JJ touches.

 keller1 wrote:
Obviously the people on this string who saw the movie liked it.

I saw the live theatre version this week in Toronto and didn't like it.  Maybe the fact that there were no "party favors" was part of the problem.

I'll have to see if I can lay my hands on a copy of the movie.

 
Hmm, I saw the movie when I was in Toronto a long time ago.  Certainly part of the charm was the Jamaicans in the audiance talking at the screen.  I don't think it was a perfect film, but well worth seeing and gave me some appreciation of the cultural context.


 Mugro wrote:


I FINALLY got the movie this week from Netflix!!! Almost TWO YEARS after I put it on my queue!! Patience rewarded, as this is a great movie!!
Thanks for playing this song, Bill!!
 

They showed some clips of it on Monday night before's Jimmy's H-O-F induction...Ya MON!
Someone actually worthy of the Hall of Fame,, Congrats.
 Bat wrote:

This verse is from "The Guns of Brixton" by the Clash, which played a couple hours ago:

You see, he feels like Ivan
Born under the Brixton sun
His game is called survivin
At the end of the Harder They Come


 
Hmm.  Same thing today:  "Guns of Brixton" 3 hours ago.  Is BillG recycling whole mornings and not just sets?  (Not that there's anything wrong with that....)

Makin' it lots warmer on this 14 degree day ... thanks! {#Sunny}
Wouldn't that be a 1970 Mercury Cougar stretch limo on the cover?  That would be interesting.

This verse is from "The Guns of Brixton" by the Clash, which played a couple hours ago:

You see, he feels like Ivan
Born under the Brixton sun
His game is called survivin
At the end of the Harder They Come


Obviously the people on this string who saw the movie liked it.

I saw the live theatre version this week in Toronto and didn't like it.  Maybe the fact that there were no "party favors" was part of the problem.

I'll have to see if I can lay my hands on a copy of the movie.

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS.....
Time for another brand-new musical biscuit.
Saw the movie for free back in '79 at Moore Auditorium on the FSU campus.  NORML put it on and they provided party favors.  Best movie experience I've ever had.
Quintessential!
JC is welcome any day, any time.

 Mugro wrote:


I FINALLY got the movie this week from Netflix!!! Almost TWO YEARS after I put it on my queue!! Patience rewarded, as this is a great movie!!
Thanks for playing this song, Bill!!
 

Mannywood.
Friday!!!
 Mugro wrote:
I am trying to get this movie on Netflix. They have it in their catalogue, but it has not been "released" yet. It is in my saved queue, with "unknown" as the "release date."


 

I FINALLY got the movie this week from Netflix!!! Almost TWO YEARS after I put it on my queue!! Patience rewarded, as this is a great movie!!
Thanks for playing this song, Bill!!
 Mugro wrote:
I am trying to get this movie on Netflix. They have it in their catalogue, but it has not been "released" yet. It is in my saved queue, with "unknown" as the "release date."


 

It's a pretty good movie.  However, unless you're from "Rastaland", you'll probably need to watch it with English subtitles to follow the dialogue.  Unfortunately, I didn't have that luxury seeing it in a theater 30 years ago, but I remember loving the music anyway.

I watched it again on DVD with said subtitles a couple years ago, and it all came back (& then some).

 Mugro wrote:

Wow. Over a year later and Netflix still reports "availability unknown".

 
This is why some people step over the line and  download stuff. The bastids. They all are gonna go to Hell {#Arghhh}

 

 

 Every time you download a movie Baby Jesus cries and is given medication to calm him down. If he's to whacked out on ADHDdrugs to save the world it'll be the fault of people who download movies.


 Mugro wrote:
I am trying to get this movie on Netflix. They have it in their catalogue, but it has not been "released" yet. It is in my saved queue, with "unknown" as the "release date."


 
Wow. Over a year later and Netflix still reports "availability unknown".

Rancid does a fantastic cover of this song.
Ivan!  {#Dancingbanana_2}
Somewhere up there, the great Dolemite is looking down on all of us and smiling.
prickelpit96 wrote:
Wtf....
He would have cranked up.
Man, I would have loved to hear it!


gutboy wrote:
This song just played after a Jimi Hendrix song. Jarring at first, but then I wondered what Hendrix would have done with Reggae.
Wtf.... He would have cranked up.
This song just played after a Jimi Hendrix song. Jarring at first, but then I wondered what Hendrix would have done with Reggae.
Love reggae classics.
Rise up, mon! "I'm gonna keep on fightin' for what's mine... and the harder they come, the harder they fall... I'm gonna get my share now of what's mine!" Revolution NOW, mon!
Go Jimmy...timeless classic
Back around 1986 or so there was a Scratch Band that played at various places on the island of Anguilla and this was one of their very best. They could go on for about 30 minutes with this song and hardly take a breath. Took a couple of beers, however, but they rocked. I seem to recall that one of the musicians is now the Prime Minister of the Island ...
TEN TEN TEN TEN!! :bananasplit: :bananasplit: :bananasplit: :bananasplit:
Killer soundtrack - this song is one of the best. I also love Many Rivers to Cross and You Can Get It If You Really Want It.
Best 'B' movie Ever. :dancingbanana_2:
What a classic...I'm off to St Lucia soon and this will be going round in my head :dancingbanana: :dancingbanana:
Bocephus wrote:
Happy 420 everyone. :guitarist: :cowboy:
LOL! See you on Pearl St.!
I love this song. It makes me think of Servo.
Mugro wrote:
I am trying to get this movie on Netflix. They have it in their catalogue, but it has not been "released" yet. It is in my saved queue, with "unknown" as the "release date." :cry: :cry: :cry:
I had the exact same thing going with "Jean de Florette" for about 3 years... and it arrived yesterday!
I am trying to get this movie on Netflix. They have it in their catalogue, but it has not been "released" yet. It is in my saved queue, with "unknown" as the "release date." :cry: :cry: :cry:
What a soundtrack! Not a duff track.
Great movie. Brought reggae to the world
Happy 420 everyone. :guitarist: :cowboy:
It's not often you hear background strings on a reggae song.
Thank you RP for this song, it really fits my ears this morning.
:bananasplit: :bananajumprope: :dancingbanana: :dancingbanana_2: :bananajam: :propeller: :sunny: :bounce: :dance: :jump:
KICK ASS!!!!! EUGENE 1978... :war:
I saw Jimmy Cliff at the 1994 Woodstock reunion, it was a sweet show. Definately, underrated it the reggae world
irie... :motor:
aquadonia wrote:
For some reason, this is giving me flashbacks of the British sitcom The Young Ones :stupid:. Or maybe Rik was always mentioning Cliff Richard. *shrugs* Nevermind.
The Young Ones was a bubblegum hit for Cliff Richard when he was a sub-Elvis wannabe instead of the botoxed hair dyed abomination that he has become. Rik would have liked Jimmy Cliff, as reggae was ( and is ) too cool for school, and he would have deliberately heard 'officers' instead of 'oppressors' as he campaigned against fascism and its instruments, such as police officers.
Krispian wrote:
I was raised on this album and I absolutely LOVE it!
Same here. I almost rated this a 10, until I remembered "Many Rivers To Cross". THAT is a 10; this is the next best. Changed it to a 9.
I was raised on this album and I absolutely LOVE it!
thefoodoflove wrote:
Maybe you should pay more attention and you would realise that this song is inspiring and is about overcoming oppression. Well the officers are trying to keep me down Trying to drive me underground And they think that they have got the battle won I say forgive them Lord, they know not what they've done CHORUS ooh yeah oh yeah woh yeah ooooh And I keep on fighting for the things I want Though I know that when you're dead you can't But I'd rather be a free man in my grave Than living as a puppet or a slave
Opressors, not officers.
MuadDib wrote:
If this didn't have a Reggae beat, thereby making it "hip" (hep? I forget) wouldn't it be...bubble-gum pop rock? The bigger they are, the harder they fall....overandoverandoverand :beat:
Maybe you should pay more attention and you would realise that this song is inspiring and is about overcoming oppression. Well the officers are trying to keep me down Trying to drive me underground And they think that they have got the battle won I say forgive them Lord, they know not what they've done CHORUS ooh yeah oh yeah woh yeah ooooh And I keep on fighting for the things I want Though I know that when you're dead you can't But I'd rather be a free man in my grave Than living as a puppet or a slave
:dancingbanana: :dancingbanana_2: Pure Godlike goodness.
mistatebird wrote:
A great classic, always a pleasure to hear. The movie wasn't that great, sort of limped along. The soundtrack is superior.
The book is far, far better. A must-read.
IRIE... :sunny:
For some reason, this is giving me flashbacks of the British sitcom The Young Ones :stupid:. Or maybe Rik was always mentioning Cliff Richard. *shrugs* Nevermind.
I'm in my happy place! :sunny: :sunny: :sunny: :sunny: :sunny:
A great classic, always a pleasure to hear. The movie wasn't that great, sort of limped along. The soundtrack is superior.