Lorsqu’ils sont invités par Pete Seeger dans son émission Rainbow Quest, en février 1966, Richard Fariña a 29 ans. Sa femme Mimi, la petite sœur de Joan Baez, n’en a pas tout à fait 21. Quelques mois plus tard, Richard sera fauché par un accident de la route.

Il chante ici une chanson à sa façon, sur un mode onirique qui n’est pas sans évoquer le style de Bob Dylan, dans laquelle il évoque la chasse aux sorcières, avec laquelle son hôte, Pete Seeger, n’en a pas encore tout à fait fini.

Comme à son habitude, il s’accompagne au dulcimer, donnant ainsi l’occasion à cet instrument traditionnel de s’essayer à un répertoire qui n’est pas le sien, à des rythmes nouveaux. Mimi, qui chante avec lui, l’accompagne à la guitare.


Well I was standing on the sidewalk, had a noise in my head.
There were loudspeakers babbling, but nothing was said.
There were twenty-seven companies of female Marines.
There were presidential candidates in new Levis jeans.
It was the red, white and blue planning how to endure.
The fife, drum and bugle marching down on the poor.
God bless America, without any doubt.
And I figured it was time to get out.

Well I have to b’lieve that in between scenes, good people.
Went and got em done in the sun, good people.
Tourist information said to get on the stick.
You ain’t moving ’til you’re grooving with a Cubana chick.
So I hopped on a plane, I took a pill for my brain,
I discovered I was feeling all right.
When I strolled down the Prado, people looked at me weird.
Who’s that hippy, hoppy character without any beard?
Drinking juice from papayas, singing songs to the trees.
Dancing mambo on the beaches, spreading social disease.

Now the Castro convertible was changing the style,
A whole lot of action on a blockaded isle.
When along come a summons in the middle of night,
Saying, « Buddy, we’re about to indict. »

When I went up on the stand with my hand, good people.
You’ve got to tell the truth in the booth, good people.
I started out with information kind of remote.
When a patriotic mother dragged me down by the throat.
« If they ask you a question, they expect a reply! »
Doesn’t matter if you’re fixin’ to die.

Well I was lying there unconscious feeling kind of exempt.
When the judge said that silence was a sign of contempt.
He took out his gavel, banged me hard on the head.
He fined me ten years in prison, and a whole lot of bread.
It was the red, white and blue making war on the poor.
Blind mother justice, on a pile of manure.
Say your prayers and the Pledge of Allegiance every night.
And tomorrow, you’ll be feeling all right.