A DOLLAR AIN'T A DOLLAR ANYMORE

(Tom Glazer) (1944)

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'All Star' ensembles were nothing new in jazz.... [Alan] Lomax was eager to produce something similar, this time using the cream of New York's folk talent. [Pete] Seeger would be available.... [Tom] Glazer, [Josh] White, [Brownie] McGhee and [Sonny] Terry agreed to participate. Surprisingly, Burl Ives agreed as well.... Like Richard Dyer-Bennet, Ives shared the passion and ideals of his more overtly political colleagues; he frequently entertained at leftist gatherings. However, Ives built his reputation and public persona exclusively on traditional material; the anonymous Union Boys session was a rare diversion for him....

Tom Glazer sang his inflation song A Dollar Ain't a Dollar Anymore, which he previously [1943] recorded with the Priority Ramblers....

Ronald D. Cohen & Dave Samuelson, liner notes for "Songs for Political Action,", Bear Family Records, BCD 15 720 JL, 1996, pp. 101-103.

Lyrics as recorded by THE UNION BOYS (Burl Ives, vocal/guitar; Tom Glazer, vocal/guitar/poss. bass; Alan Lomax, vocal; Walter 'Brownie' McGhee, vocal/guitar; Pete Seeger, vocal/banjo; Sonny Terry, harmonica, Josh White, vocal/guitar), Asch Studios, New York, NY, Mar 11, 1944 (ASCH 346-2B); reprinted ibid., p. 109 (minor corrections by Manfred Helfert).

I was feeling kinda hungry, so I thought I'd buy some bread.
I went into the corner grocery store.
I took out the usual money, but the grocer shook his head
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, a dollar bill don't buy what it used to,
Don't buy what it used to, don't buy what it used to.
A dollar hill don't buy what it used to,
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, the cost of living's rising, rising higher than a kite,
And they tell me that it's gonna rise some more.
And they're gonna freeze our wages 'til we get that old frostbite
And a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, a dollar bill don't buy what it used to,
Don't buy what it used to, don't buy what it used to.
A dollar hill don't buy what it used to
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore
Now I live in a rooming house, my room is awful small,
As a matter of fact it's only two by four.
But the landlord raised my rent and now I'm living in the wall
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, a dollar bill don't buy what it used to,
Don't buy what it used to, don't buy what it used to.
A dollar hill don't buy what it used to
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Here's a lesson in arithmetics: now one and one make two
And it is true that two and two make four.
But when the prices get higher, why, arithmetic's a liar
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, a dollar bill don't buy what it used to,
Don't buy what it used to, don't buy what it used to.
A dollar hill don't buy what it used to
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
From the tree that grows in Brooklyn to the Gulf of Mexico,
From Florida out to the western shore
We'll take Congress by the collar, "Roll those prices back!" we'll holler
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, a dollar bill don't buy what it used to,
Don't buy what it used to, don't buy what it used to.
Oh, a dollar hill don't buy what it used to
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore
Now it you wanna learn a lesson; if you really wanna know,
If you wanna solve your problems by the score,
Fight your economic battles with the good old C.I.0
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore.
Oh, a dollar bill don't buy what it used to,
Don't buy what it used to, don't buy what it used to.
Oh, a dollar hill don't buy what it used to
'Cause a dollar ain't a dollar anymore

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