Sunday, June 19, 2016

`The Asbury Park Rebellion' protest folk song lyrics

The Asbury Park Rebellion
In the Summer of '70
Suburban whites played music
While cops suppressed Black dreams.

Demanding summer jobs
African-American youth rebelled
For Asbury Park's tourist trade
Failed to hire them.
The white merchants made money
From the crowds who came to swim
In the ocean by the beach
Who filled restaurants and inns. (chorus)

On the West Side of Asbury Park
Seven hundred youths want jobs
But only 246
Can be hired with Youth Corps funds.
Yet white kids from other towns
Are recruited by the white merchants
To staff their boardwalk businesses
And resort hotels and restaurants. (chorus)

So after a July 4th dance
The Asbury Park Rebellion began
And white-owned Springwood Avenue stores
Had some windows broken.
The mayor then called his cops
Led by a puppet chief
And 150 state police arrived
Who brutally cleared the streets. (chorus)

One thousands youths marched downtown
After 5 p.m. on July the 7th
And trashed the stores on Main Street
As the state troopers fired their weapons.
Cops used tear gas and shotguns
And clubbed women with their nightsticks
And fired into apartment windows
When they occupied the West Side district. (chorus)

State police held machine guns
On the streets of Asbury Park
And their shotgun pellets wounded
Over 90 folks in the dark.
Fourteen were taken with gunshot wounds
To Jersey Shore Hospital
And 160 were arrested
And some claimed that "4 were killed." (chorus)

A town curfew was imposed
Yet Concerned Citizens made 22 demands
Like more jobs for local youth
More housing and a police review board.
Jersey's suburban whites
Play music still when they're old
But how Asbury Park's Revolt was crushed
Remains a tale untold. (chorus)