New Video: “Everybody’s Working Hard”

I wrote a new song! I made it my goal to write twelve songs again this year, and this is my seventh. That means I’m ahead of schedule. Yay!

This one’s a bit political, which is atypical for me, but it’s about topics I’ve been thinking about a lot lately: income inequality, the wealth gap, and the rags-to-riches narrative.

Basically, I’m getting tired of wealthy people claiming that hard work and sacrifice are the only factors in their success, and that poor people stay poor primarily because of bad choices and laziness. Everyone I know is working hard. That some have become wealthy while others remain less so seems to me to have a lot more to do with privilege and dumb luck than with work ethic. So I wrote a song about it. I think the lyrics explain my position more eloquently than I ever could in prose, so take a listen!

There are also some cool non-political things going on in this song: I put in some fun harmonies, and I used the word “monocle” in the chorus. (I smile inside every time I sing it, ’cause it’s so silly!) Watch the video below, and let me know what you think in the comments.

 

Lyrics

You’re living like a king now ‘cause you earned it

You’re dining fine and jetting off, hiring help, and relishing

Your sovereignty

 

You bootstrapped from the bottom; you deserve it

And nothing makes your blood boil like the whiny kids these days

Good for nothing beggars all too soft to make their own way

 

You never used a crutch

You never took a handout

You never needed luck

Huh …

 

Tell me again how hard work turns lead into gold

‘Cause everybody’s working hard

Still eating scraps and wearing rags against the cold

Everybody’s working hard

We’re slothful, selfish, and spoiled?

Why don’t you take off your tinted monocle

There’s grit under our fingernails and blisters on our soles

Everybody’s working hard

 

I’ve seen your face on boxes of Monopoly

And you weren’t born on Baltic with no houses and no money

You get out of jail free

 

Snow White and Cinderella: no more fantasy

Than this rags-to-riches fairy tale you tell to keep us shamed

My finger’s raised to burst your bubble and to point the real blame

 

Tell me, who paved your roads?

Tell me, who taught you your times tables?

Who made your bed and your home?

Did you do all alone?

 

Tell me again how hard work turns lead into gold

‘Cause everybody’s working hard

Still eating scraps and wearing rags against the cold

Everybody’s working hard

We’re slothful, selfish, and spoiled?

Why don’t you take off your tinted monocle

There’s grit under our fingernails and blisters on our soles

Everybody’s working hard

 

Tell me again how hard work turns lead into gold

‘Cause everybody’s working hard

Still eating scraps and wearing rags against the cold

Everybody’s working hard

We’re slothful, selfish, and spoiled?

Picking up your slack and taking pennies for our toil

There’s grit under our fingernails and blisters on our soles

Everybody’s working hard

Everybody’s working hard

Everybody’s working hard

Everybody’s working hard

 

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