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Graham Nash — Chicago
Album: Songs for Beginners
Avg rating:
7.1

Your rating:
Total ratings: 388









Released: 1971
Length: 2:48
Plays (last 30 days): 0
So your brother's bound and gagged
And they've chained him to a chair
Won't you please come to Chicago just to sing?
In a land that's known as freedom
How can such a thing be fair?
Won't you please come to Chicago for the help that we can bring?

We can change the world
Rearrange the world
It's dying
To get better

Politicians, sit yourselves down
There's nothing for you here
Won't you please come to Chicago for a ride?
Don't ask Jack to help you
'Cause he'll turn the other ear
Won't you please come to Chicago or else join the other side?

(We can change) Yes, we can change the world
(Rearrange) Rearrange the world (It's dying)
If you believe in justice (It's dying)
And if you believe in freedom (It's dying)
Let a man live his own life (It's dying)
Rules and regulations, who needs them?
Open up the door

Somehow people must be free
I hope the day comes soon
Won't you please come to Chicago? Show your face
From the bottom of the ocean
To the mountains of the moon
Won't you please come to Chicago? No one else can take your place

(We can change) Yes, we can change the world
(Rearrange) Rearrange the world (It's dying)
If you believe in justice (It's dying)
And if you believe in freedom (It's dying)
Let a man live his own life, yeah (It's dying)
Rules and regulations, who needs them?
Open up the door
Comments (35)add comment
Rather an appropriate song for our political situation in 2018/2019, don't ya think?
Oh god, whatta' head shaker. I just got done typing this on a different forum.
"Oh c'mon. Truth does NOT always prevail. Sometimes the bad guys win. I'm afraid this is one of those periods in history."
You get shot in Chicago
This song had such potential. 
Favorite all time album. {#Daisy}
 Steely_D wrote:
Nowadays instead of writing songs like this we get

They say we stand for nothing and 
There's no way we ever could ...
 
Well, I suppose if you want to consider a hack like John Mayer to be a spokesperson/political troubadour for today then that's all you get.  
 Steely_D wrote:
Nowadays instead of writing songs like this we get

They say we stand for nothing and 
There's no way we ever could ...
 
Well, I suppose if you want to consider a hack like John Mayer to be a spokesperson/political troubadour for today then that's all you would get.  There are others around these days writing great music. 
 boontonite wrote:
This is one of the best solo albums by any of CSN&Y, right up there with Goldrush. The arrangements and mood really work as a whole.

 
Agreed!  Great album and mood.  High school years for me.
Just a reminder that: "What's old is new.". It was fucked up then and it's fucked up now. Why? Cause people are stupid.
 seageek wrote:

I remember the same sense of paranoia back then. You didn't need 24 hr cable news (of any political bent) to feel real fear. Just a half-hour of Cronkite would be enough to scare the crap out of you. 

 
Let us not forget that a lot of the fear and anger was also because the military-industrial complex killed Martin King in April '68 and just 2 months later, Bobby Kennedy, who would have won the Dem. nomination and beaten Nixon that November.

We'd had three popular leaders assassinated in the space of five years - JFK, MLK, RFK (four if you count Malcolm X in '65).
 westslope wrote:
Having an old guy moment here....  Did not CSNY do this song at one point?
 
A live version appears on the 4 Way Street album.
Having an old guy moment here....  Did not CSNY do this song at one point?
saw Mr. Nash live the other day, still a vital gentlemen!
This is one of the best solo albums by any of CSN&Y, right up there with Goldrush. The arrangements and mood really work as a whole.
big dissapointment for me when i bought this album
Nash needs Crosby or the Hollies 

.......on a carousel 
Song of hope. Change yourself - change the world.
 Steely_D wrote:
Nowadays instead of writing songs like this we get

They say we stand for nothing and 
There's no way we ever could 

Now we see everything that's going wrong 
With the world and those who lead it 
We just feel like we don't have the means 
To rise above and beat it 

So we keep waiting 
Waiting on the world to change 
We keep on waiting 
Waiting on the world to change 

It's hard to beat the system 
When we're standing at a distance 
So we keep waiting 
Waiting on the world to change  - Mayer
I pray that this is simply a well written troll on his part. 

 
You're right. We seem to have lost that spirit. I would welcome a hippy revival.


Nowadays instead of writing songs like this we get

They say we stand for nothing and 
There's no way we ever could 

Now we see everything that's going wrong 
With the world and those who lead it 
We just feel like we don't have the means 
To rise above and beat it 

So we keep waiting 
Waiting on the world to change 
We keep on waiting 
Waiting on the world to change 

It's hard to beat the system 
When we're standing at a distance 
So we keep waiting 
Waiting on the world to change  - Mayer
I pray that this is simply a well written troll on his part. 
 kurtster wrote:
Nothing wrong with this song, except it has a message and a stance and a place in history.

Glad to see more of these songs make it into the rotation again.  Like TYA's I'd Love To Change The World  and others.  Heck, we've been listening to Dylan here for years.  Its been as if Dylan was the only allowed messenger of these kinda messages.  Others have similar messages, too.  And a lot of them have stood the test of time, aged well and for some crazy and sad reason(s) just as relevant today as when they were written.  

 
Right on!
Nothing wrong with this song, except it has a message and a stance and a place in history.

Glad to see more of these songs make it into the rotation again.  Like TYA's I'd Love To Change The World  and others.  Heck, we've been listening to Dylan here for years.  Its been as if Dylan was the only allowed messenger of these kinda messages.  Others have similar messages, too.  And a lot of them have stood the test of time, aged well and for some crazy and sad reason(s) just as relevant today as when they were written.  
 bam23 wrote:
Sure it's a rather stupid song, by not only today's standards but even when released. Still, I like it largely because I heard it on FM radio back then, a lot. Graham Nash was hectoring listeners if one listened to the lyrics. Still, there was a darkness upon the land: Police riots at the 1968 Democratic national convention, a ruthlessly stupid war that was still supported by a majority of Americans, a genuine paranoia that was based on reality (unlike the contemporary Tea Party sorts who gin up imaginary evil government forces to explain everything that's wrong, etc.), race-based riots that had recently hollowed out the cores of many major and not so large cities, from which many have never recovered, and so on. 

 
Not to nitpick, but the song and the album it was on came out in '71. The majority of Americans no longer supported the Vietnam War by then. According to Wikipedia, Nash was singing about the trial of the Chicago Eight (later, the Chicago Seven). Bobby Seale was one of the defendants and started seriously verbally abusing Judge Julius Hoffman after the judge denied Seale's request for postponement of the trail. Hoffman ordered Seale gagged and bound to a chair in the courtroom (hence Nash's lyrics in the song). Hoffman eventually sentenced Seale to four years in prison for contempt of court. 

And while some urban riots created lasting damage (several blocks in early '90s Washington, DC, for instance were still damaged by the rioting sparked by the death of Martin Luther King), cities in the North and Northeast were suffering from long-term decline well before any riots in the late 60s. 

For instance, Newark, which endured a major six-day riot in July '67:

"Unemployment and poverty were also very high with the traditional manufacturing base having been fully eroded and withdrawn from the Northeast US by 1967....

While the riots are often cited as a major factor in the decline of Newark and its neighboring communities, longer-term racial, economic, and political forces contributed towards generating inner city poverty. By the 1960s and 1970s, as industry fled the city, so did the white middle class, leaving behind a poor population. "
 bam23 wrote:
Sure it's a rather stupid song, by not only today's standards but even when released. Still, I like it largely because I heard it on FM radio back then, a lot. Graham Nash was hectoring listeners if one listened to the lyrics. Still, there was a darkness upon the land: Police riots at the 1968 Democratic national convention, a ruthlessly stupid war that was still supported by a majority of Americans, a genuine paranoia that was based on reality (unlike the contemporary Tea Party sorts who gin up imaginary evil government forces to explain everything that's wrong, etc.), race-based riots that had recently hollowed out the cores of many major and not so large cities, from which many have never recovered, and so on. 

 
I remember the same sense of paranoia back then. You didn't need 24 hr cable news (of any political bent) to feel real fear. Just a half-hour of Cronkite would be enough to scare the crap out of you. 
shite
Still has that Neil Young keyboard and background vocals....I think Graham like Neil's sound...
 
Sure it's a rather stupid song, by not only today's standards but even when released. Still, I like it largely because I heard it on FM radio back then, a lot. Graham Nash was hectoring listeners if one listened to the lyrics. Still, there was a darkness upon the land: Police riots at the 1968 Democratic national convention, a ruthlessly stupid war that was still supported by a majority of Americans, a genuine paranoia that was based on reality (unlike the contemporary Tea Party sorts who gin up imaginary evil government forces to explain everything that's wrong, etc.), race-based riots that had recently hollowed out the cores of many major and not so large cities, from which many have never recovered, and so on. 
Great album.  Mostly introspective; not this one, though.

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young - Chicago
Album Info:
4 Way Street is the third album by Crosby, Stills & Nash, their second as Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and their first live album. It was originally released in 1971, shipping as a gold record and peaking at #1 on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart. A document of their tour from the previous year, the live recordings presented were taken from shows at The Fillmore East, New York, June 2—June 7, 1970 The Chicago Auditorium, Chicago, July 5, 1970 and The Forum, Los Angeles, June 26—June 28, 1970.



"Society has rejected them !
Their values of love, peace and purity were all regarded as awkward. Today we are paying the high price for not having listenned to them. Our world is so poluted and all we know is to consume trash, polutte, vote for the wrong people, get fat and intoxify our own selfs and the planet as well. "




Crosby, Stills and Nash - "Chicago" Live

"Graham William Nash (born 2 February 1942) is a British singer-songwriter known for his light tenor vocals and for his songwriting contributions with the British pop group The Hollies, and with the folk-rock band Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Nash is a photography collector and a published photographer.
Crosby, Stills & Nash (CSN) is a folk rock/rock supergroup made up of David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash, also known as Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (CSNY) when joined by occasional fourth member Neil Young. They are noted for their intricate vocal harmonies, often tumultuous interpersonal relationships, political activism, and lasting influence on music and culture"

So your brother's bound and gagged
And they've chained him to a chair
Won't you please come to chicago just to sing
In a land that's known as freedom how can such a thing be fair
won't you please come to chicago for the help that we can bring

We can change the world rearrange the world
It's dying - to get better

Politicians sit yourselves down, there's nothing for you here
won't you please come to chicago for a ride
don't ask jack to help you `cause he'll turn the other ear
won't you please come to chicago or else join the other side

We can change the world rearrange the world
it's dying - if you believe in justice
dying - and if you believe in freedom
dying - let a man live his own life
dying - rules and regulations, who needs them open up the door

Somehow people must be free I hope the day comes soon
won't you please come to chicago show your face
From the bottom of the ocean to the mountains of the moon
won't you please come to chicago no one else can take your place

We can change the world rearrange the world
It's dying - if you believe in justice
dying - and if you believe in freedom
dying - let a man live his own life
dying - rules and regulations, who needs them open up the door

Drums & Tambourine: Johnny Barbata
Bass: Chris Ethridge
Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Organ & Tambourine: Graham Nash
Whiskers: Larry Cox
Lead Vocal: Graham Nash
Background Vocals: Rita Coolidge, Vanetta Fields, Shirley Matthews, Clydie King & Dorothy Morrison

in Songs for Beginners (1970) (1971)

this song was later enclosed in double album recorded live on New York, Chicago & Los Angeles ( June 2-July 5, 1970)  "4 Way Street" by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (1971)




cover of song "Chicago" by Graham Nash of CSN&Y & The Hollies - a sixties psych rock classic, by Spanish neo-psych band Stay:




 



why this song is closed in the trunk of RP Station since Jul 27, 2004; it is not a chance to move it now?     

  ** 10**



RobRyan wrote:
I was there too, in fact I was in Chicago in '68 and for the trial. But in a lot of ways we already see a better world... I don't discount the inequities that are out there, the miscarriages of justice, etc. etc. etc. but nonetheless, it ain't all bad...
Let's not ignore all the changes since then. The world in '68 was a different place for women in America. '68 was before abortion became legal, before the women's movement. Back then who would imagined that one day the wives of the two men who ran against each other in a presidental election would be Senators. Now let's see how long before there's a black or female president. On a personal note, I still have the 45 of this record. Haven't heard it in decades. Thanks Bill.
philarktos wrote:
Ah, sweet nostalgia. "We can change the world......" Guess I still believe that, only now it seems I'm ready to face the possibility that it's likely gonna take a considerable number of future lifetimes. Too bad the world looks less and less like a place where it's gonna be much fun to come back to. Ah but I remember when we really thought we'd live to see a better world.
I was there too, in fact I was in Chicago in '68 and for the trial. But in a lot of ways we already see a better world. I'm no Polyanna, but heck, we're on a computer bulletin board exchanging messages that can be instantly read worldwide discussing a radio staiton available by computer. That radio station caters to an audience orders of magnitude smaller than any which could ever have been served by broadcast radio. I don't discount the inequities that are out there, the miscarriages of justice, etc. etc. etc. but nonetheless, it ain't all bad...
Ah, sweet nostalgia. "We can change the world......" Guess I still believe that, only now it seems I'm ready to face the possibility that it's likely gonna take a considerable number of future lifetimes. Too bad the world looks less and less like a place where it's gonna be much fun to come back to. Ah but I remember when we really thought we'd live to see a better world.
Some "purpose" songs stand the test of time, others don't. This is a good example of the latter category. On top of that, any song that uses the "change/rearrange" rhyming pair is, to use Monty Python vernacular, RIGHT OUT!!!! (imho ymmv and the rest of the opinion disclaimers).