Phil Ochs - Links On The Chain Lyrics

Come you ranks of labor, come you union core
And see if you remember the struggles of before
When you were standing helpless on the outside of the door
And you started building links on the chain
On the chain, you started building links on the chain

When the police on the horses were waitin' on demand
Ridin' through the strike with the pistols in their hands
Swingin' at the skulls of many a union man
As you built one more link on the chain, on the chain
As you built one more link on the chain

Then the army of the fascists tried to put you on the run
But the army of the union, they did what could be done
Oh, the power of the factory was greater than the gun
As you built one more link on the chain, on the chain
As you built one more link on the chain

And then in 1954, decisions finally made
The black man was a-risin' fast and racin' from the shade
And your union took no stand and your union was betrayed
As you lost yourself a link on the chain, on the chain
As you lost yourself a link on the chain

And then there came the boycotts and then the freedom rides
And forgetting what you stood for, you tried to block the tide
Oh, the automation bosses were laughin' on the side
As they watched you lose your link on the chain, on the chain
As they watched you lose your link on the chain

You know when they block your trucks boys, by layin' on the road
All that they are doin' is all that you have showed
That you gotta strike, you gotta fight to get what you are owed
When you're building all your links on the chain, on the chain
When you're building all your links on the chain

And the man who tries to tell you that they'll take your job away
He's the same man who was scabbin' hard just the other day
And your union's not a union till he's thrown out of the way
And he's chokin' on your links of the chain, of the chain
And he's chokin' on your links of the chain

For now the times are tellin' you the times are rollin' on
And you're fighting for the same thing, the jobs that will be gone
Now it's only fair to ask you boys, which side are you on?
As you're buildin' all your links on the chain, on the chain
As you're buildin' all your links on the chain

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Phil Ochs Links On The Chain Comments
  1. Smriti Chakraborty

    Phil we need you,where are you? Love n respect from India 🇮🇳

  2. Palestinian Christian

    maybe ill vote for bill weld

  3. Palestinian Christian

    all the leftists buy macbooks and iphones made by Chinese slaves and vote for people who like this china trade-hypocrites

  4. Politically Yeast

    We need One Big Union for the whole working class! How else can we gain power? Come join the Industrial Workers of the World!

    Palestinian Christian

    arent just unions good enough?

    Pepe Silvia

    @Palestinian Christian not necessarily.

  5. Pepe Silvia

    Vampires, come out of your castle!

  6. Steven Corsoe

    Labor laws,cost of living adjustment and the wage is all too unreal for a realistic society.Soon what's left of unions,teamster,and great pay will fall to the way side only to make the rich and greedy richer on our worker backs.

  7. Steven Corsoe

    WE LOT THIS!!!...with immigration and this president that fucked us.The only ones making money is him,his family,and these fucking politicians.These are just memories of freedom.We will never see these great days ever again.

  8. Anirvan Dasgupta

    Phil lives. Even more so in this day and this age.

    Smriti Chakraborty


  9. Mickey Smythe


  10. Steve Roberts

    Has there ever been such a biting commentary on the American Labor Movement. Phil was the best. I'll take him over Dylan any day of the week. Dylan sold out many years ago. Phil--never.


    Yes, but only Dylan is known in France, and Joan Baez. But very few people ( even among English teachers ) know the name od Phil Ochs, Buffy Ste Mary, ... and Tom Paxton and ...Pete Seeger - believe me or not !

  11. Noname noname

    ...I am crying...

    Pepe Silvia

    Solidarity, comrade.

  12. Mary Root

    This is a wonderful tribute to a not so well-known or recognized artist, especially by his songwriting comrades. And no Neil Young, he did not blow his head off. Actually, Ochs was very vocal in song and presence, about his opposition to the Vietnam war. Unfortunately, he was yet another victim of bipolar disorder, but he did leave us with so many great songs :)

    Paul Moose

    Mary Root , Neil Young was referring to Kurt Cobain at Farm Aid, supposedly.


    @Leo1798 He was comparing his experience with Cobain with Seeger's experience with Ochs.

  13. B Silva

    Such a tribute to Phil that people are still debating his songs and believes. I love his music and what he stood for, so sad he went too soon 😢

  14. Edward Branca

    And then the working class went out and voted for that piece of excrement called Trump.


    average trump supporter salary was 72k, the working class mostly didn't vote. trump's support base is among the petite bourgeoisie and labor aristocracy. theres some working class people who support him because of white supremacy but the working class is not responsible for trump.

    Edward Branca

    If you are correct, please accept my apologies.

    Mickey Smythe

    Fake news, subvice has it right.

    Patricia Tonkin

    @Subvice We have moved out in to farm country in Wisconsin. Many of the big farm owners are also huge Trump supporters.

  15. Edward Branca

    This is dedicated to all of you blue collar fools who voted for Trump. You played right into the greedy capitalist bosses hands.

    Leonardo's Truth

    Trump only told half truths--he will support the building of a wall-to make the wall between "Israel" and Palestine bigger, higher, and longer-and Mexico will not be paying for that--but you know who will.

    Palestinian Christian

    trump isnt that bad yet then again he stupid on Palestine

    Palestinian Christian

    i hate 5g though-the dems have little to offer in 2020 it seems -thanks for nothing dems

    Palestinian Christian

    it will be hard for me to vote dem if not impossible in 2020

    Daniel Peterson

    @Palestinian Christian Bernie Sanders is the only candidate seriously talking about leveraging our subsidies to Israel to try and force them towards a diplomatic solution with the Palestinian territories. Just sayin.

  16. MRjimdotcom1

    Since Regan and air traffic controllers, union workers have been bad-mouthed very successfully in the US. Even though the unions won so many victories for dignity, hours, protection from bullying bosses, and let's not forget money -- higher wages. YAY! And yay Phil Ochs.


    they have been more sucessfull recently but unions have always bene bad mouthed roughed up evicted extra, its the price you pay for doing whats right

    lee shafer

    Reagan was right-HISTORY EMBRACES HIM!

    Ciaran Ward

    Wait what did air traffic controllers do

  17. floydy opz

    SoLiDaRiTy FoReVeR

    Pepe Silvia

    This but unironically.

  18. Antonio Serrano

    Ochs forever!!

  19. Paul Lavan

    Always my hero, Phil.

  20. goji2099

    @Seasass Any Union that'll keep this man out ain't a union... It's a goddamn Club!

  21. LylyCSM2

    Ask your union: Are you building links on the chain? Or have you forgotten your way?

    Mickey Smythe

    hahaha like i've got a union

  22. AndrewLundwall