BROTHER CAN YOU SPARE A DIME

Posted on Posted in Breedloves's Folk Songs
  • BROTHER CAN YOU SPARE A DIME
    “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?”, also sung as “Buddy, Can You Spare a Dime?”, is one
    of the best-known American songs of the Great Depression. Written in 1931 by lyricist
    E.Y. “Yip” Harburg and composer Jay Gorney, “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” was
    part of the 1932 musical New Americana. It became best known, however, through
    recordings by Bing Crosby and Rudy Vallee. Both versions were released right before
    Franklin Delano Roosevelt‘s election to the presidency and both became number one hits
    on the charts for Warner Bros. Crosby’s recording became the best-selling record of its
    period, and came to be viewed as an anthem of the shattered dreams of the era.
    They used to tell me
    I was building a dream.
    And so I followed the mob
    When there was earth to plow
    Or guns to bear
    I was always there
    Right on the job.
    They used to tell me
    I was building a dream
    With peace and glory ahead.
    Why should I be standing in line
    Just waiting for bread?
    Once I built a railroad
    I made it run
    Made it race against time.
    Once I built a railroad
    Now it’s done
    Brother, can you spare a dime?
    Once I built a tower up to the sun
    Brick and rivet and lime.
    Once I built a tower,
    Now it’s done.
    Brother, can you spare a dime?
    Once in khaki suits
    Gee we looked swell
    Full of that yankee doodle dee dum.
    Half a million boots went sloggin’ through hell
    And I was the kid with the drum!
    Say don’t you remember?
    They called me Al.
    It was Al all the time.
    Why don’t you remember?
    I’m your pal.
    Say buddy, can you spare a dime?
     Once in khaki suits,
    Ah, gee we looked swell
    Full of that yankee doodle dee dum!
    Half a million boots went sloggin’ through hell
    And I was the kid with the drum!
    Oh, say don’t you remember?
    They called me Al.
    It was Al all the time.
    Say, don’t you remember?
    I’m your pal.
    Buddy, can you spare a dime?