Discover Songs


It is Day 17 of the Hollywood writers' strike, and both sides are holding firm in their fight over profits from new media. Up to now, we've talked about the issues. We've dissected the signs the writers are carrying, but what about a protest song? Who is the Pete Seeger for the scribes? Who's putting their blood, sweat and paper cuts into song? BPP resident commentator, singer, songwriter, Jill Sobule, that's who. We've gathered our members of our staff here to help Jill Sobule with a song. She's with us this - good morning, Jill, by the way.

Ms. JILL SOBULE (Singer, Songwriter): Good morning.

STEWART: I need to note here, full disclosure, the BPP is not taking sides in this strike. We're just doing this in the spirit of fun and because we're all Hammy Hammertons.




PESCA: Don't listen to the lyrics. We're just here to help with the music.

STEWART: We're here to help with the music.

PESCA: Committed to the music. Okay.

STEWART: Jill, take it away.

(Soundbite of music)

Ms. SOBULE: (Singing) We toil in the writer's room. The window lets in dark and gloom. We entertain the people of this land. We've forsaken our great novel for the sitcom and the pilot, our blood and sweat and punch lines for the man. We are the writers. We are the writers. We are the wronged. Just like our brothers in the coal mines and the stagehands of the East, we will suffer with just donuts out on Melrose in the heat. The producers get the glory, and the actors get the fame. We Cyranos of the backlot, left out of the game.

PESCA: New Media, they're calling it.

Ms. SOBULE: (Singing) We are the writers.

Unidentified Group: (Singing) We are the writers. We are the wronged.

Ms. SOBULE: (Singing) And all we are asking is a piece of the pie. Without another season of "Madman," I will surely die. My friends, do you know what will happen in the end if they don't pay? More of that Scott Baio show and spin-offs of Flavor Flav.

PESCA: Flavor Flav.

Ms. SOBULE: (Singing) We are the writers.

Unidentified Group: (Singing) We are the writers, and we are the wronged.

Ms. SOBULE: (Singing) And so we'll strike for our right just to write and get paid. Yes, we'll fight, and we'll sing you this song. We are the writers.

Unidentified Group: (Singing) We are the writers.

Ms. SOBULE: (Singing) And we are the wronged.

(Soundbite of clapping, cheering)

STEWART: Jill Sobule and the BPP backup singers. Jill, they need you out there on the lines.

Ms. SOBULE: I know. I think I'm going to go around - well, I'm a block away from Melrose.

STEWART: You got to go.

Ms. SOBULE: And instead of giving donuts and water, I'm just going to bring my guitar.

STEWART: Now, you're not a member of the Writer's Guild? You are a member?

Ms. SOBULE: No, no, no, I just write songs, and we're - we have it even worse.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Ms. SOBULE: I'm going to picket by myself in front of, I don't know, Atlantic Records or something. It's theā€¦

STEWART: You're all by yourself, marching up and down.

Ms. SOBULE: But I want to say, I also wrote this with Michelle Lewis. She helped on this, so props to her.

PESCA: Props to the writer.

Ms. SOBULE: Yes.

STEWART: Michelle Lewis - props to the writers, Jill Sobule and Michelle Lewis. Always a pleasure to have you in studio.

SOBULE: I love being here. Thank you.

STEWART: Can't wait to hear your next commentary. Singer, songwriter, guest commentator Jill Sobule.

Oh, yeah. You know that'll will be on our Web site:

Happy holiday, Jill.

Ms. SOBULE: Happy holidays.

PESCA: Coming up, we're going to be talking with Jill Homer, an Alaska woman who's training for the Iditarod - the human Iditarod. That'll be on THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT from NPR News.

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