Sunday, May 1, 2016

International Workers Day - Want a Work Song?

1st May is observed as International Workers Day or Labour Day in some parts of the world including India. While there is some political event associated with it, the Catholic Church also celebrates the feast of St. Joseph The Worker.

To celebrate all the workers, let's think about all the workers who toil to make our life run normally. Besides all the work they put in, they lighten their load by lifting up their spirits in song - Work Songs. 

Being in Mumbai right now, my daily mode of transport is the Suburban Rail Network. My regular station is called the Harbour line and extends to Panvel which is a good distance away. The Central Railway has just upgraded the power systems a couple of weeks ago, and on Friday introduced a 12-car train on this line. Every Sunday most of the train services on the Central Railway are 'blocked' to implement improvements on the lines. While the entire country was observing Labour Day, the railroad workers were in their position working. Here's my favorite 'Railroad' 'Work Song'. This version won the boys of Our Own English High School Sharjah a prize at an Inter-School competition, a couple of years ago. It's part of my collection since I had a part in training them, and also accompanied the group. 

Fruit is a favorite in my household. While the flavour of the season is the Alphonso Mango, the one fruit we enjoy round the year is the banana. While in the UAE, we enjoyed Chiquita bananas from the Philippines. Most of the bananas in the world come from the Caribbean where they sing this Work Song - 'The Banana Boat Song'.

Do you know any Work Song? Come on, have your say... SONG.

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