1,000 guitars: A May Day/Occupy Guitarmy

Update: A quick video of some Guitarmy folks. (Will put more videos in the bottom of this post)

As of 4:51pm EST on May Day, you can watch the stage at Union Square at OccupyMusician: here. 

We cannot get any numbers estimates. If you have any facts, please post in the comments. (If you don’t make the spam filters, we will click you through asap.)

If you have a guitar, or know friends who do, please go to the Occupy Guitarmy Tumblr website for schedules, details, and set list. The main point is to gather at 12 noon at Bryant Park in NYC.


On May Day (Tuesday, May 1st, 2012), Occupy Wall Street musicians and activists will hold an event: 1,000 acoustic guitars in a joyful, musical, nonviolent Occupy Guitarmy march. Tom Morello (ie:  The Nightwatchman, Audioslave, Rage Against The Machine) will be the conductor.

Some basic info…

Where to meet (starting with rehearsal time):

Assemble at noon at Bryant Park by the Gertrude Stein statue. March from Bryant Park to Union Square. Performance in Union Square around 4pm. (Join at any location.)

Occupy Guitarmy
Set list:

“One Guitar” – Willie Nile

We Shall Not Be Moved” – Traditional spiritual

World Wide Rebel Songs” – The Nightwatchman (Tom Morello)

El pueblo unido” – Sergio Ortega

This Land Is Your Land” – Woody Guthrie

Which Side Are You On?” – song by Florence Reese,
popularized by Pete Seeger, sung for May Day with new, Occupy Words

Videos and performance notes on
Guitarmy’s Youtube channel: here

If you do attend, please consider sending onthewilderside a report, video, and/or links to Live Streaming. We don’t want to miss the image of 1,000 plus guitars playing folks music in the street! Send media or links to kimberlywilder06 AT yahoo DOT com

Very detailed instructions, chords, and lyrics for “Which Side Are You On“. These are from the Guitarmy Tumblr website:


Which Side Are You On?” (Occupy Version)
“Which Side Are You On?” by Florence Reece, from the traditional “Lay the Lily Low’

The basic root chord of this song is drone on Em (E minor).

Beginners should strum on Em all the way through and ONLY switch to the B7 just once, toward the latter part of each verse

We are the guitar army, we’re marching from this place
We march for peace and justice, to save the human race
Which side are you on? Which side are you on?
Which side are you on? Which side are you on?

Hey, hey – May Day!
Hey, hey – May Day!
Hey, hey – May Day!
Hey, hey – May Day!

We are the guitar army, our eyes are on the prize
Musicians have no chance in life unless we organize

We are the guitar army, we’re marching side by side
We’re march for those who suffer, we march for those who’ve died

Oh people, can you hear us, oh people, do you care?
You’re either with the ninety nine, or you are with the Mayor


More info and schedules for Occupy May Day and
General Strike events in NYC:

A website that covers and supports many national and international Occupy Wall Street events:


A May 4th Event…

And, for Long Islanders, and for NYC folks willing to take the LIRR East
... PeaceSmiths Coffeehouse, the Friday after, May 4th at 8pm in Amityville. You can share stories about May Day, Occupy, and Guitarmy, and see performers: Katie Pearlman, Allone, and Michael Korb! And, there is an Open Mic!


Morning-After Guitarmy video collection:

Various stuff: Tom Morello up close; a jazzy “All Day All Week Occupy Wall Street”; and some of “One Guitar”:

Guitarmy folks serenading some policemen on May Day:

Tom Morello sings best verse of “This Land Is Your Land”:

[If you really, really want to see Tom Morello on stage at Union Square, you will have to go to Youtube and search yourself. Because, he dropped “The F Bomb”, and we try to stay family-friendly!]

2 Responses

  1. […] 1,000 guitars: A May Day/Occupy Guitarmy (onthewilderside.com) […]

  2. You go man! can’t go myself because of serious illness but sending a friend who is a brilliant musician and red diaper baby. he’ll be there. have fun!

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