"Finest Worksong" as written by and Peter Buck Bill Berry....
The time to rise has been engaged
You're better best to rearrange
I'm talking here to me alone
I listen to the finest work song
Your finest hour, your finest hour

Another chance has been engaged
To throw Thoreau and rearrange
You are following this time
I beg you not, beg to rhyme (blow your horn)
Your finest hour (blow your horn), your finest hour

Take your instinct by the reins
Your better best to rearrange
What we want and what we need
Has been confused been confused (blow your horn)
Your finest hour (blow your horn), your finest hour

Take your instinct by the reins
Better best to rearrange
What we want and what we need
Has been confused been confused (blow your horn)
Your finest hour (blow your song)
Your finest hour (blow your horn)
Your finest hour (blow your song)
Your finest hour


Lyrics submitted by xpankfrisst

"Finest Worksong" as written by Peter Buck Bill Berry

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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Finest Worksong song meanings
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13 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentI think it is simply a testament to the fact that many jobs must be completed, and there is no fanfare for them. It is the statement that most people are unsung heroes in their daily occupational lives.
    If you look at the majority of jobs that people endeavor to complete or maintain, the fact is that almost all are neccesary to civilization as we know it. There is a quote from the movie 'Caddyshack' where one of the Snobs(Judge Smails) says to one of the Slobs(Danny Noonan) "The world needs Ditchdiggers, too".
    I get the feeling that this song just celebrates the fact that most people's finest hour just goes on by without notice, and is just considered "Business as usual"
    The very passionate lyric of "Blow your horn" literally screams at you to appreciate your function in society.

    In the immortal words of Dennis Miller; "That's just my opinion, I could be wrong"
    ronjeron November 06, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"Throw Thoreau and rearrange" is a reference to transcendentalist and author of "Walden" Henry David Thoreau who shunned work and society by living in a cabin in the woods for two years.

    Also Thoreau was all about non-conformity
    "I beg you not beg to rhyme"

    Then, the two lines I quoted seem to contradict eacother but maybe that will get a discussion started.
    laocoonon February 27, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentDissatisfaction with authority and possibly capitalism?
    RABicleon September 30, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentDissatisfaction with authority and possibly capitalism?
    RABicleon September 30, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentProbably about someone rising others to rebeliion, trying to get them fired up and excitied to fight the man.
    rockmanon January 26, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWell, I always laugh at the innacuracy of the title. There are so many better songs to work to, like, say, half of the rest of the R.E.M. catalogue? The version with horns on Eponymous was better....

    Yeah, the previous posters are right, it's just a call to rise up to the stupidity of many jobs, but particularly in reference to government. The entire Document album was a political statement, a document per se, and it's telling the people to rise up against the government. Reagan's approval ratings were sinking at this time and an election was merely a year away. It was a protest against the government.
    ebowtheletteron June 22, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree with the revolution theory ("rearrange").
    However, I am thinking about the following phrase : "You're better best to rearrange"

    What did he mean with it ? Did he mean to stop Reagan's attacks on the social systems before everything is lost or did he mean that a revolution always turns into a bloody contra-revolution if it gets lost ? Did he mean that IF you make a revolution you'll have to forget your fears and to fight with all your power and passion to avoid a flashback to the old order ?
    DerUnbequemeon March 27, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"Throw Thoreau and rearrange"-- don't withdraw, engage.
    futatoriuson September 07, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOh, and to add to the previous comment, I don't believe that R.E.M. consider this "The Finest Worksong".
    I think this is even more accurately ironic, as I feel that "The Finest Worksong" lyric is subjective, and left to be decided by each listener as to what that song is, hence listening to "The Finest Worksong" does not mean this song.
    What song motivates you to git-r-done?
    That is The Finest Worksong!
    IMHO, of course.
    ronjeron November 06, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOff-topic from the previous posts (which seem to have the meaning well-covered) but this is one of the few R.E.M. songs that I knew all the lyrics to before I looked at this page! So many of them, I'm like: "what the hell is he saying?"
    DrBubbleon January 13, 2011   Link

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