Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Easy To Be Hard


"Easy To Be Hard"
by James Rado and Gerome Ragni
from Hair (1967)

How can people be so heartless?
How can people be so cruel?
Easy to be hard ...
Easy to be cold.


How can people have no feelings?
You know I'm hung up on you.
Easy to be proud ...
Easy to say no.


Especially people
Who care about strangers,
Who care about evil
And social injustice.
Do you only
Care about the bleeding crowd?
How about a needing friend?

I need a friend ...

How can people be so heartless?
How can they ignore their friends?
Easy to give in ...
Easy to help out.


Especially people
Who care about strangers,
Who say they care about
Social injustice.
Do you only
Care about the bleeding crowd?
How about a needing friend?
I need a friend ...

How can people have no feelings?
How can they ignore their friends?
Easy to be hard.
Easy to be cold.
Easy to be proud.
Easy to say no.

I was watching the film Taking Woodstock last night, and it got me thinking about the musical Hair (for obvious reasons).  I've seen the stage production twice ... the recent, and extraordinarily disappointing, Broadway revival and a strong local production.  My first introduction to the musical was Three Dog Night's cover of the song "Easy To Be Hard" - I was only six when the musical first played off-Broadway, after all.  It still remains my favorite song in the show. 

Though the 1979 Milos Forman film version (with electrifying choreography by Twyla Tharp) has NOTHING to do with the musical, it succeeds in its own right ... I love the film, though most "musical theatre types" despise it.  Here is the brilliant film performance of the song by stage and film performer, Cheryl Barnes.

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