Mitchell, Joni - Ethiopia Lyrics




Hot winds and hunger cries--Ethiopia
Flies in your babies' eyes--Ethiopia
Walking sticks on burning plains
Betrayed by politics
Abandoned by the rains
On and on--the human need
On and on--the human greed profanes
Ethiopia--Ethiopia--Ethiopia
Your top soil flies away--Ethiopia
We pump ours full of poison spray--Ethiopia
Between the brown skies and sprinkling lawns
I hear the whine of chain saws
Hacking rain forests down
On and on--insanities
On and on--Short sighted greed abounds
Ethiopia--Ethiopia--Ethiopia
Little garden planet-oasis in space
Some hearts hurt--they can hardly stand it
Famine phantoms at the garden gates
Ethiopia--Ethiopia--Ethiopia
Every Sunday on T.V.--Ethiopia
You suffer with such dignity--Ethiopia
A T.V. star with a P.R. smile
Calls your baby "it" while strolling
Through your tragic trials
On and on--stupidity
On and on--the basic needs are defiled
Good air--good water--good earth
Ethiopia--Ethiopia--Ethiopia
Little garden planet--oasis in space
Some hearts hurt--they can hardly stand the waste
Ethiopia--Ethiopia--Ethiopia





Other Lyrics by Artist

Rand Lyrics

Mitchell, Joni Ethiopia Comments
  1. bei1016

    An Amazing Statement. This is Still Wonderful to go back and Experience.

  2. John F

    This is utterly laughable crap :-D

    sal economos

    Please explain why you feel that way about this song?

    John F

    Did she invent virtue-signalling with this solemn garbage? :-D

    frank peter

    @John F
    well, joni has written quite a lot about her vices and moral deficits...
    Besides, what is so virtuous about being horrified at watching extreme, needless human suffering?
    Its basic.
    What are you signaling, john?

  3. littlenige

    The lyrical content of this song blow my mind. To portray such a scene successfully is something I could only dream of.

  4. neng walter

    Great powerful, hypnotic song and performance....and the fretless bass fits perfectly

  5. frank peter

    I gave this album a very thourough listening when it came out. this is the song that stays most promininantly in the song bank memory. I also remember the noteable graphics!

  6. Meg Mc

    Hot winds and hunger cries--Ethiopia
    Flies in your babies' eyes--Ethiopia
    Walking sticks on burning plains
    Betrayed by politics
    Abandoned by the rains
    On and on, the human need
    On and on, the human greed profanes
    Ethiopia, Ethiopia, Ethiopia
    Your top soil flies away--Ethiopia
    We pump ours full of poison spray--Ethiopia
    Between the brown skies and sprinkling lawns
    I hear the whine of chain saws
    Hacking rain forests down
    On and on, insanities
    On and on, short sighted greed abounds
    Ethiopia, Ethiopia, Ethiopia
    Little garden planet-oasis in space
    Some hearts hurt, they can hardly stand it
    Famine phantoms at the garden gates
    Ethiopia, Ethiopia, Ethiopia
    Every Sunday on T.V. Ethiopia
    You suffer with such dignity Ethiopia
    A T.V. star with a P.R. smile
    Calls your baby "it" while strolling
    Through your tragic trials
    On and on, stupidity
    On and on, the basic needs are defiled
    Good air, good water, good earth
    Ethiopia, Ethiopia, Ethiopia
    Little garden planet, oasis in space
    Some hearts hurt, they can hardly stand the waste
    Ethiopia, Ethiopia, Ethiopia
    Songwriter: Joni Mitchell

  7. Tom Hardenbergh

    Joni, come back and sing to us about Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria, and on and on. Famine and starvation afflict tens of thousands still. It is unnecessary and inhumane, but so so human.

  8. Annie Honjo

    My least favourite Joni album, but this song - Ethiopia - more than makes up for the rest of this 80s-saturated work.

  9. sal economos

    A haunting and devastating musical statement, especially "lyrically", on that famine.
    Seems like ancient history now. But this song still resonates deeply today.
    A simple song structurally. But completely involved in its emotional message....As only Joni could do.
    "Little garden planet"? Wonder for how much longer?
    This was a great LP.

    Peter Lunow

    it is not ancient history.... look around you today

  10. Namaste Om

    great song!

  11. Gasparuccio X

    great track , it sounded really peter gabrielish

    Peter Lunow

    gabriel never reached this level

  12. Fred Verillo

    I love this recording. Ethiopia is one the most poignant and truthful songs I have ever heard. Joni hits the mark in every line. Sadly, nothing has changed in terms of the sorry and unequal state of humanity, and in the human destruction of our "little garden planet"
    Since I first listened to Joni Mitchell in 1967, she has been my inspiration and my guiding light.

    modifiedcontent

    Ethiopia was run into the ground by communists; government-control and mismanagement cause famines. They don't happen when people are left free to take care of themselves.

    frank peter

    @modifiedcontent
    Yeah that right there is what joni meant!

    L Martinez

    "Fred Verrillo" I don't necessarily agree with the message though in certain ways, yes. However it is very poignant and has a haunting quality and the lyrics express the song-writer's thoughts well.

  13. reality won

    Will you vote for you by voting today?  Will GOP Military Coup/Police State/Non-prevent Terror Attack, Work In Week?  This is why, "...we(e),...", must secure the vote by voting early and helping others to do the same.  At least talk to people about voting on election day, set-up carpooling, or just going together to the polls to vote on Tuesday.  Your country needs you; vote as if your life depends on it because it does- please!  In not you, yes, you, then who, if not here, then where, if not now then when?  Please vote, and help others to do the same, everyone!  Today is the day!  find the time to vote today, please.   reality

    frank peter

    Solidarity!

  14. John White

    This was about the time that she & Larry were involved in a head-on accident with a DUI. She said that they walked away unscathed because they were driving a big car. It's in a Musician Magazine interview of the period.

    L Martinez

    @frank peter Now that is too bad

    frank peter

    Oh shit... I was gonna edit my comment and i erased it!

    Stevie nicks sounds like a goat.

  15. ronster369

    Ah Jeez.....This song is from my very favorite album from her, "Dog Eat Dog". Mark my word, you will never hear a song or another singer that comes even close to resembling this song. This song defines unheard - of.

  16. psyclonoughts

    stillmessage does seem to be a classic

  17. michaelmachine

    Dog Eat Dog..underrated and quite  an extraordinary recording. Brava! One of my favorite records by Joni.

  18. Crazy Me

    the lyrics are a portrait.  the rhythms are majestic.  Joni reigns supreme.  This is mind manipulation at it's finest.  she takes us to Ethiopia.  She makes us feel the pain and lust for solutions.  I love Joni

    Agadore Lofton

    Great words to describe this piece of breathtaking art.

    sal economos

    @Agadore Lofton How relevant to this very day. "Little garden planet"?
    Not so sure anymore.

  19. Ivan Antunovic

    The truest song, not just on the subject - the human greed profanes.

  20. Lydia Wilson

    such a brilliant soul
    thanks for sharing!

  21. Ken Fidler

    Thank you so much Christian for your time and effort in sharing so much of Joni.  She is the "Gold Standard!"

  22. psyclonoughts

     suprised so few hits i remember this as a great song for its time

  23. psyclonoughts

     a anthem for its need still a great message

  24. Ray Perry

    I so loved this album ( way back in the day) thx awesome