BALL OF CONFUSION. THAT´S WHAT THE WORLD IS TODAY.

Every now and then the music business produces songs that live on over the years because the lyrics expresses a common conception of the world’s situation. One of these songs is “Ball of Confusion. That´s What the World Is Today.”

The lyrics, as we will see, deals with world problems that were and still are ignored by big politics and big media. The lyrics are even more relevant today than when it was first released.

Ball of Confusion. That´s What the World Is Today is a 1970 hit single for The Temptations. It was released on the Gordy (Motown) label and written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong.

The Temptations is an American Motown vocal group who released a series of successful singles and albums with Motown Records during the 1960s and 1970s. The repertoire has included soul, funk, R&B among others.

Now to the lyrics. Read them slowly and you´ll see how depressingly relevant the lyrics still are to this day.

”People moving’ out, people moving in.
Why, because of the color of their skin.
Run, run, run, but you sure can’t hide
An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.
Vote for me and I’ll set you free

Rap on, brother, rap on.
Well, the only person talking about love thy brother is the preacher
And it seems nobody’s interested in learning but the teacher
Segregation, determination, demonstration, integration, aggravation,
humiliation, obligation to our nation
Ball Of Confusion that’s what the world is today (yeah, yeah)
The sale of pills is at an all-time high
young folks walking around with their heads in the sky
Cities aflame in the summer time,

and the beat goes on
Eve of destruction, tax deduction,
City inspectors, bill collectors,
Evolution, revolution, gun control, the sound of soul,
Shooting rockets to the moon, kids growing’ up too soon
Politicians say more taxes will solve everything,

and the band played on.
Round and round and around we go, where the world’s headed nobody knows.
Great googa mooga, can’t you hear me talking to you, just a
Ball of Confusion that’s what the world is today.
Fear in the air, tension everywhere
Unemployment rising fast, the Beatle’s new record’s a gas,
and the only safe place to live is on an Indian reservation,

and the band played on
Eve of destruction, tax deduction,
City inspectors, bill collectors, mod clothes in demand,
population out of hand, suicide too many bills, hippies moving’ to the hills
People all over the world are shouting end the war

and the band played on.
Round and round and around we go, where the world’s headed nobody knows.
Great googa mooga, can’t you hear me talking’ to you, just a
Ball of Confusion that’s what the world is today
Let me hear you, let me hear you, let me hear you
Ball Of Confusion that’s what the world is today.”

Randy Shilt quoted the lyrics from Ball of Confusion when he named his award-winning journalistic account of the AIDS epidemic, And the Band Played On. The repeated use, in the song, of the phrase ”and the band played on” signaled that no one was paying proper attention to world problems, in the same manner the AIDS epidemic was initially ignored.

Personally, I love the line; “Politicians say more taxes will solve everything.” Big politics are pressing the people of Sweden with heavier and heavier taxes. Swedish people being the world´s most heavily taxed people. And the argument is always that it´s needed to solve any given problem.

Another great line is the following; “Vote for me and I’ll set you free.” A common basic phrase by our politicians. A lie thru and thru! The politicians don’t set anybody free but themselves. In Sweden we can see more and more of legislation and proposals with an East-German totalitarian slant.

BALL OF CONFUSION. THAT´S WHAT THE WORLD IS TODAY. IS THAT DENIABLE?

 

 

 

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