Hey, hey-hey hey There'll be food on the table tonight Hey, hey, hey hey There'll be pay in your pocket tonight
My gut is wrenched out it is crunched up and broken A life that is led is no more than a token Who'll strike the flint upon the stone and tell me why If I yell out at night there's a reply of bruised silence The screen is no comfort I can't speak my sentence They blew the lights at heaven's gate and I don't know why
But if I work all day at the blue sky mine (There'll be food on the table tonight) Still I walk up and down on the blue sky mine (There'll be pay in your pocket tonight)
The candy store paupers lie to the share holders They're crossing their fingers they pay the truth makers The balance sheet is breaking up the sky So I'm caught at the junction still waiting for medicine The sweat of my brow keeps on feeding the engine Hope the crumbs in my pocket can keep me for another night And if the blue sky mining company won't come to my rescue If the sugar refining company won't save me Who's gonna save me?
But if I work all day
And some have sailed from a distant shore And the company takes what the company wants And nothing's as precious, as a hole in the ground
Who's gonna save me? I pray that sense and reason brings us in Who's gonna save me? We've got nothing to fear
In the end the rain comes down Washes clean, the streets of a blue sky town
Carl from PerthMy father contracted mesothelioma from working at Wittenoom in the 50's, he told me that they knew of the health impacts but kept it quiet. Bastards have short changed my father's life for greed. No return from the blue sky mining company, it angers me that these men were sent to a future death sentence.
Rnmorton from West Chester PaAwesome song, my favorite of Midnight Oil's work. I had no idea what it was about until recently but always enjoyed it, it had such drive.
Jonnyeclectic from WannerooIf you look closely, Graeme "Grayballs" Green can be seen carrying the bands equipment off a train in the filmclip. Midnight Oil's frontman, Peter Garrett, remarked "Green is an Aussie legend that shines brighter than any gem", a reference to Green's opal prospecting days in Coober Pedy where the clip was shot.
Esteban Erik Stipnieks from UnicoIf you look at the head stone in the video Freeze it at 1:42 you see the place of birth Yugoslavia on the Facebook page for the band they indicate that this was a Deliberate choice on their part since many immigrants to Australia who had been Displaced Persons were given the choice to work the mine as part of becoming permanent Australian residents. I liked the song but did not realize the significance of it till I visited my late Uncle Gints Stipnieks (he is mentioned in a book about the former chief of Australia's national library!) and my Uncle pointed out he was given a choice between working the Blue Sky Mine or being a lumber jack. He chose to be a lumberjack. Midnight Oil needs to be saluted for high lighting in the video the other part of the tradgedy.
Leo from Westminster 1, MdDefinitely and Defiant! Blue Sky Mining is nothing less than an absolute horror story about the tragedy of Wittenoom -a dark moment in Australia's history. In the title song to their best album, Midnight Oil speak out again environmental rape. The tragedy of Wittenoom is such that Aussie rock scribe Toby Creswell called Wittenoom "One of the greatest and most despicable acts of corporate bastardry the 20th Century had ever seen or witnessed. In this shocker of an Oils rocker, Peter Garret screams and writes in an Aussie rage "Who's gonna save me?" Peter gets the sad news that asbestos has claimed the lives of the miners. Peter takes action. So he takes the mining company to Aussie Court. Across the Outback back east to Canberra, the Desert Mine is found guilty of murder by asbestos. In Parliament at Canberra, Peter wins his case and he rages in his thick Brit-Aussie Voice as he wails the Harp "Never Again! The Case Is Closed! You Will Pay for What You've Done!
Phoenix from Warrnambool, AustraliaChina Jim, The song is about how a huge Australian Company screwed over it's worker's by not telling them of the danger's of asbestos and until resently took no responsability for their actions. This company owned the Asbestos mines "and" the australian sugar refineries. Cold Chisel's song Taipan - "C.S.R is the sugar-cane king"
Marcos from Orlando, FlIn America, a similar environmental disaster happened in Libby-Montana, where hundreds of residents have died from Asbestos-related diseases due to the mining operations in the Zonolite company (later acquired by W.R. Grace). A great book by Andrew Schneider and David McCumber, named "An Air That Kills", tells the whole story.
Dave from Sydney, AustraliaThis song has beautiful melodic verse and chorus and is sung with such power and emotion its almost scary!
Max from Karratha, AustraliaApparently, Blue Sky Mining was based on a book called Blue Murder, written by a sufferer of asbestos illness. Even today, the people incharge of the company and the mine are holding back compensation and support for the miners who are suffering from the blue asbestos. Hence the lines "The balance sheet is breaking up the sky" (the company is making a huge profit) while the miners are "caught at the junction, still waiting for medicine".
I've lived up north in the Pilbara all my life. I've traveled all over Australia, and very few places match the areas beauty.
Jim from Qinhuangdao, ChinaI always thought this was a song of profound sadness. The narrator sounds like he's completely helpless to save himself. "And if the Blue Sky Mining Company won't come to my rescue/ And if the sugar refining company won't save me/ Who's gonna save me" Those two places are the last two places he'll get help.
Frank from Western Australia, WaIndeed this song is about Wittenoom. Situated now as a ghost town, or perhaps a town torn down, it is surrounded by the most beautiful country on earth but has the most horrible past. Many Australians still die from asbestosis from working these mines. Cool waterholes amongst a spectacular rocky country, spinifex and aboriginal rock carvings, kangaroos tamed by tourists...........Time stands still******