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They Might Be Giants - James K. Polk

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Uploaded on Sep 29, 2011

"This song was written with childhood friend Mr. Matthew Hill. Originally featured as a b-side, its legacy has grown with hardcore TMBG fans, and now has been resurrected in full hi-fi for Factory Showroom. The lyrics are as factual as we could make them with the reference books handy. James Knox Polk, the 11th President of the U.S., was a dark horse candidate who unexpectedly won the Democratic nomination and the election based on his popularity in the South with his stated goal of annexing Texas, the Southwest, and the Oregon Territories. Once in office he fanned the flames of dispute between the U.S. and Mexico to achieve part of this aim. (The Mexican War is still commemorated in the expression 'Remember the Alamo!') Personally, we find his expansionist policies ruthless and unscrupulous, but the existence of the Western U.S. is largely due to him. The spooky sound halfway into this recording is a 'singing saw,' an actual metal saw stroked with a bow by Mr. Julian Koster."

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