What has happened down here is the winds have changed
Clouds roll in from the north and it start to rain
Rained real hard and rained for a real long time
Six feet of water in the streets of Evangeline

The river rose all day, the river rose all night

Some people got lost in the flood
Some people got away alright
The river have busted through, clear down to Plaque mines
Six feet of water in the streets of Evangeline

Louisiana, Louisiana
They're tyrin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away
Louisiana, Louisiana
They're tryin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away

President Coolidge came down in a railroad train
With a little fat man with a notepad in his hand
President say "little fat man, isn't it a shame?"
What the river has done to this poor cracker's land

Louisiana, Louisiana
They're tyrin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away
Louisiana, Louisiana
They're tryin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away


Lyrics submitted by yuri_sucupira

Louisiana 1927 Lyrics as written by Randy Newman

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Louisiana 1927 song meanings
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13 Comments

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  • +2
    General Comment

    Newman may just be the most effective composer of metaphorical prose in music history.

    "Ain't it a shame what the river has done to this poor crackers land." Just like Bush, Cooledge didn't get it. It was never about the river.

    The genious of Randy Newman is a national treasure.

    MarkL5on December 22, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    Originally reflective of both a catastrophic disaster to New Orleans and the surrounding area, and also of the lax political reaction that in part led to an immovable African-American democratic voting block, this song has even newer meaning now, as history repeats itself...

    jnb987on September 12, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    They're trying to wash us away.

    montresoron March 25, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    Yes, a very eerie song especially after Hurricane Katrina.

    They're tryin' to wash us away..

    Nonfactoron February 22, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    It's downright creepy actually. I remember, purely by accident, hearing this song about a week after Katrina hit. I was totally blown away. Replace Coolidge with Bush, and you've got a perfect commentary on the Katrina disaster. Wow.

    svendenon April 29, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    The Katrina aftermath was reminiscent of the 1927 flood and the President's lack of interest in the plight of the people of Louisiana. Coolidge never went down to Louisiana after the flood. Hoover was in charge of disaster relief and went down there. It helped him win the presidency over Coolidge the next year.

    GoodnightLittleBearon November 02, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    This songs expressed a genuine sense of sadness with such few words. Even the comic "With a little fat man" effective gives a sense of an outsider who either doesn't care or can't relate to the people caught up in the tragedy.

    offhandon December 22, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    That happened way back in 1927. You would think that our culture would have evolved beyond that sort of thing. However, as several of you pointed out, history repeated itself once again. Its unfortunate how little has changed. And YES, Randy Newman is an under appreciated and misunderstood songwriting genius.

    NateFairbankson April 01, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    I think it could be a metaphorical gone with the wind kind of thing. Who knows.

    It's just a great song, beautiful music. I remember my Grandmother took me to see Gone With the Wind when I was a kid and I thought it was so boring. But a friend was over here the other day and he say a picture in my apartment labeled Sherman's Headquarters and his church owns it. We started talking about how Savannah surrendered and that was where he wrote the letter to Lincoln, and where the 40 acres and a mule thing was conceived (much earlier than I had thought).

    It's just history here. It's not all history we should be proud of but it's just something nobody really gets unless they've lived here.

    bkabbotton May 16, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    I like Neil Young. My dad does too. I have all of his vinyls he had a ton of Neil Young. But I was drinking one night and sent my dad a text that said "Neil Young writing songs from Canadian citizenship" which is kind of how I feel.

    My dad also liked Skynard, more than me. I've been meaning to show him Jason Isbell's cover of "Like a Hurricane".

    The guitar is authentic, the guitarist channels Young's authentic style. Jason sings it with a southern accent but again it's authentic. It's so cool.

    But again I love Neil Young (more than Skynard) but I have mixed feelings about some of what he wrote. It's almost like if he didn't get his ass kicked in a bar in Alabama he wouldn't get on his moral high horse.

    bkabbotton May 16, 2014   Link

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