America: The Wall

Music transcends generations, and the music of the original album has done just that. For if we take the music and lyrics of The Wall and adapt them, remove the original metaphors from them, and map them onto a new, modern meaning, it can result in a new understanding of the world we live in. So listen along to observe how the music has transcended the physical vinyl to the digital Spotify playlist, and read along to see how the original lyrics have transcended to a modern interpretation. This is a new narrative told by the misguided politician D (comparable to the tortured musician Pink in the source material), and tale is not a reenactment of the original story from Pink Floyd, but a mirror image of it that relates to our country today. Should the original music of Pink Floyd inform our understanding of the modern country we live in , or does the society we live in give us a new understanding of the original work? I’d like to say maybe a bit of both, but either way, here is the music, here is the lyrics, here is “America: The Wall.”

Link to Pink Floyd’s The Wall
(original lyrics)

America’s The Wall

1) In the Flesh?
D: So ya thought ya might like to go to the show?*
To feel that sweet collusion, that early debate glow.
Tell me is something offending you snowflake?
Is this not what you elected to see?
If you wanna find out what’s behind this red tie,
You’ll just have to vote for this disguise.

2) The Thin Ice
We all love our planet.
Politicians say they do.
But the seas feel warm to me now, 
And the sky’s no longer blue.
Don’t be surprised when a crack in the ice*
Appears because of the heat.
As climate change is denied; endangered animals die,
With your smog flowing out behind you
As they claw the thin ice.

3) The Happiest Days of our Lives
D: “When we grew up and went to school*
There were politicians who we let run the country
Anyway they could.*
We didn’t pour derision on to Reagan
By exposing his every weakness.
We can make America that great again.”

But in the US it was well known when we got home at night
The arms race  and the Cold War were bringing us
Within inches of our lives*

4) Another Brick in the Wall
We don’t need no education*
CNN’s thought control
Rallying cry of the masses
Hey, fake news, leave that man alone

All in all we just need another brick in the wall

We don’t need no education*
But ignorance takes it toll
Who needs facts in the white house
Hey, liberals, leave the wall alone

All in all we just need another brick in the wall

5) Goodbye Blue Sky
D: “Th-th-there is nothing to be frightened of
N-N-No need to worry about falling bombs

D-D-Did you ever wonder why he couldn’t hold his temper
And destroyed the promise of a brave new world
Radiation oozing from the clear blue sky

6) Hey You
Hey you, how long until you fold, living lonely, getting old
Do you hear me?
Hey you, who won’t reach across the aisle with shifting feet and phony smile
Did you forget me?
Hey you, they’re going to set you alight
Cause all you do is yell, and all you do is fight

D: Hey you, out there on your own, watching TV all day long
You know you love me!
Hey you, glue your eyes to the screen, just don’t question what you see
You can trust me 
Hey you, help my campaign keep going strong
Open your heart, just don’t tell me I’m wrong

7) Comfortably Numb
D: No need to explain, the truth’s receding
A distant ship, illegals on the horizon
I tell you they are coming through in waves
My lips move but I don’t mean a thing I’m saying
Now I’ve won the race,
I’ve been retreating since
I hadn’t kept track of my lies
I tried to dodge, but now it’s here
Built with the stone and built with fear
The voters have won, the wall will come
I have become comfortably numb 

8) In the Flesh
So ya thought ya might like to come to the show*
To feel the warm thrill of facism, the ‘elect’ rally glow
I’ve got some bad news for you snowflake
D’s doing well in the polls I can tell
So here he is as the hate crimes still rise
We’re gonna see if you still stomach his lies

D: “Are there any illegals in the rally tonight?
Then they’re on the wrong side of the wall
They’re sending us murderers and rapists
This is why we need a wall
That one looks like a bomber, let’s throw him out
Now you all see what I’m really about

9) The Trial 
Mueller: Good Morning House and Senate
Special counsel will show the president that stands before you
Was caught red-handed in Russian dealings
Shady dealings of an inhuman nature
This will not do, call the Attorney General!

Sessions: I always said he’d come to good in the end Mr. Mueller
If they’d let me run away before I realized my mistake
But my hands were tied, the screaming guys in Congress
Couldn’t handle all the laughter on election day

D: Crazy, send ICE to their attic
This is crazy, now there’s talk of impeachment
They want to throw my future away

Putin: You little shit, you’ve done it now*
Why’d you have to mention me?
You should have used “Lock her up” more often
But you had to open up your mouth
At least facebook is prevailing

D: Crazy, I said no collusion
This is crazy, ridiculous witch hunt
There’ll be no door in the wall when
I’m finished with it

Judge Kavanaugh: The evidence before the court*
Is far from incontrovertible
My patience for liberals has expired
In all my years of judging I have never seen before*
A country so deserving of the full structure of a wall
Since, my friend, you’ve instilled the racist fears
I sentence you to build a wall and keep them out of here

Build up the wall
Build up the wall….

10) Outside the Wall
All alone or in twos*
The ones who really need you
Walk up and down outside the wall*
Some hand in hand*
And some gathered together in bands*
Desperate immigrants and refugees make their stand
And when they’ve given us their all
Some stagger and some fall*
After all it’s not easy*
Climbing over some mad politician’s wall

Note: The lyrics are from the perspective of several different characters, and what is said in the writing is not a reflection of my personal views but rather a reflection of theirs.

Note: Songs, song titles, and original lyrics written by Pink Floyd. I do not own the rights to the music, nor am I claiming creative ownership of it. The changes made to the lyrics are my own, the lines where I have not made changes (marked with a *), I still credit to the original artist

Follow this hyperlink to read Andrew Shutes’ project statement.