Folk music is partly about working in specific genres, some of them very old, and applying them to contemporary issues and events. So far as I know, of the many songs inspired by the Occupy movement, “Have Yourself a Slice of Occupy” is the only one in ragtime style. Writer Carol Denney, no stranger to these pages, has put a “sort of scratchy” recording on YouTube ( Like most of Carol’s songs, it’s a bit challenging to write down— if you really want to get the rhythm and the irregular phrasing right, go have a listen.

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we are having quite a slice of occupy
hot, fresh, wild, delicious occupy
stir it up a nice hot cup of occupy
share it with your friends and neighbors
taste the fruit of all your labors
be the first one on your block to occupy
wind it up and set your clock to occupy
tell the cops and tell the mayor
you’ve become an occuplayer
have yourself a slice of occupy

grab your tent and screw the rent come occupy
join the slackers and the hackers occupy
meet the folks who lost their homes
meet the folks who never owned one
meet the folks down to the bone
you’ll find you’ll never be alone
grab a sign and join the line at occupy
admit you’re the 99 and occupy
if your tent don’t get reception
change your channel of perception
have yourself a slice of occupy

don’t you love the great outdoors
there’s no bureaucracy
but your meeting might be endless
it’s democracy – you gotta love it

don’t be late no need to wait just occupy
have yourself a heaping plate of occupy
hop on your bike and be the mike at occupy
the rich are going to miss the fun
but afterwards we’ll all be one
lose your frown and dance around at occupy
boot the blues and make the news at occupy
this ain’t no occupy in the sky
and there’s more to occupy than meets the eye
come have yourself a slice of occupy
(we really mean it)
have yourself a slice of occupy

San Rafael singer/songwriter Kurt Huget uses a country-western sound in “Down Every Road,” written in 2010 and inspired by the election and nascent presidency of Barack Obama. Kurt writes, “I really do believe that this is a time of hope, change, and new possibilities for our country. This will require a revitalized sense of community, a renewed sense of pride, and a spirit of working together for positive change.”

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There’s a spirit ’cross the land
You can feel it where you stand
Sunlight’s pouring into ev’ry open door
So just take a look around ev’ry city, ev’ry town
From the mountains and the rivers to the shore.

Down ev’ry road you can see the heart of America
Down ev’ry road you can find a part of the dream
Come share the load, everyone will be right there with ya
And together we’ll live like you’ve never seen.

There’s a load of work ahead
But we’ll do it like we said
We’ll need everyone to pitch in and lend a hand
But we’re taking giant strides, and we’re feeling good inside
We all do the very best at what we can.

The folknik song pages are lovingly produced by John Kelly and Barbara Millikan. John Kelly produced the song pages for this issue.

If you’d like to submit a song for possible publication, please send a score, tape/CD or (preferably) both to —

Copyright for all songs published on this page remains with the authors.