THE PREACHER AND THE SLAVE (JOE HILL) (1911)
Tune: "Sweet Bye and Bye" (S. FILLMORE BENNETT/J. P. WEBSTER)

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The IWW concentrated much of their efforts on organizing the migratory and casual laborers of the lumber and construction camps. In between jobs these migrants would gather in the Skid Rows of Chicago, Portland, Seattle and other cities they used as a "base of operations." There on the street corners was the inevitable Salvation Army band anxious to save lost Wobbly souls.

But the Wobblies were more interested in filling their stomachs than in saving their souls, and they ridiculed the Salvation Army hymns with biting parodies aimed at what came to be known as "pie in the sky" preaching....

The most successful of these parodies was Joe Hill's masterpiece, "The Preacher and the Slave," more widely known as "Pie in the Sky" -- a devastating take-off on the hymn "Sweet Bye and Bye."

Edith Fowke and Joe Glazer, Songs of Work and Protest, New York, NY, 1973, p. 157.

First published in the Jul 6, 1911 edition of the Industrial Worker "Little Red Songbook" as "Long Haired Preachers,", credited to F. B. Brechler (subsequently credited to Joe Hill in Mar 6, 1913 fifth edition)

Long-haired preachers come out every night,
Try to tell you what's wrong and what's right;
But when asked how 'bout something to eat
They will answer with voices so sweet:
CHORUS:
You will eat, bye and bye,
In that glorious land above the sky;
Work and pray, live on hay,
You'll get pie in the sky when you die.
The starvation army they play,
They sing and they clap and they pray
'Till they get all your coin on the drum
Then they'll tell you when you're on the bum:

Holy Rollers and jumpers come out,
They holler, they jump and they shout.
Give your money to Jesus they say,
He will cure all diseases today.
If you fight hard for children and wife --
Try to get something good in this life --
You're a sinner and bad man, they tell,
When you die you will sure go to hell.

Workingmen of all countries, unite,
Side by side we for freedom will fight;
When the world and its wealth we have gained
To the grafters we'll sing this refrain:

FINAL CHORUS:
You will eat, bye and bye,
When you've learned how to cook and to fry.
Chop some wood, 'twill do you good,
And you'll eat in the sweet bye and bye.

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