Billy Bragg - Why We Build The Wall Lyrics

Why do we build the wall?
My children, my children
Why do we build the wall?

Why do we build the wall?
We build the wall to keep us free
That's why we build the wall
We build the wall, to keep us free

How does the wall keep us free?
My children, my children
How does the wall keep us free?

How does the wall keep us free?
The wall keeps out the enemy
And we build the wall to keep us free
That's why we build the wall
We build the wall to keep us free

Who do we call the enemy?
My children, my children
Who do we call the enemy?

Who do we call the enemy?
The enemy is poverty
And the wall keeps out the enemy
And we build the wall to keep us free
That's why we build the wall
We build the wall to keep us free

Because we have and they have not
My children, my children
Because they want what we have got

Because we have and they have not
The enemy is poverty
And the wall keeps out the enemy
And we build the wall to keep us free
That's why we build the wall
We build the wall to keep us free

What do we have that they should want?
My children, my children
What do we have that they should want?

What do we have that they should want?
We have a wall to work upon
We have work and they have none
And our work is never done
My children, my children
And the war is never won
The enemy is poverty
And the wall keeps out the enemy
And we build the wall to keep us free
That's why we build the wall
We build the wall to keep us free
We build the wall to keep us free

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Billy Bragg Why We Build The Wall Comments
  1. Jay Blake

    I thought philosophytube made this song lol

  2. Dale restoring old tools


  3. Bubbles Bubbles

    Is it strange this song reminds me of the building of the iron curtain/Berlin wall?

  4. shelley

    Judge not.....

  5. Caelvanir

    Do any of you happen to have a match?

  6. Bethany Cho

    I'm so confused- isn't this song by Anaïs Mitchell???

    Capitan Pepeñonga

    Its is, this is like a cover or his own version

  7. pinkie perky

    Erm... so our system that relies on welfare does not collapse? 😂

  8. J R


  9. Sophia Walsh Long

    Clever Pink Floyd imagery here in this lyric video

  10. newtogon

    the only wall we need to build is between the church and the state.

  11. Frank Russell Design

    Wow. Great song! This is turning out to be one of Bill's bet albums ever.

    The Bespectacled Archivist

    He didn't write this, it's from Hadestown.

  12. Dr. Marteen

    Trump 👍❤. Biiitches!


    This was written years before he was even in office

  13. Kevin Mannix

    The enemy is not poverty, The enemy is nomadism

  14. Jane McCaffrey

    everyone should listen to the anais Mitchell version! she actually wrote the song

  15. Adam Hall

    Didn't expect Hadestown and Billy Bragg to be connected in anyway, but I'm not complaining

  16. Gabriel

    we build a wall not because we hate the ones on the outside. it's because we love the ones on the inside. pc, Lefty madness confusing reality with idealism spouted by the likes of Billy bragg has got us in our current mess.

    Damián Ignolfi

    someone missed the point

    Jinn Indo

    Preach, brother.

  17. Peter Trigwell

    A voice of sanity in a world of lies doublespeak and blame directed at the poor.

  18. Ryan Cunningham

    We build the wall because Trump told us to

  19. Just Ordinary

    Bigger countries using capitalism to rape smaller countries leaving them in poverty and no work to feed themselves on pay of pennies. Drug lord and violence move in to fill the void....they flee to be free...and others want to build walls to keep them's not right.

  20. Jeffrey LaPorte

    Its interesting to compare this to the Anais Mitchell version. In that one the speaker is a demon, encouraging the crowd to recite their rhetoric.
    In this one he sounds genuinely distraught about what the “children” are doing. Like Bragg himself watching a new generation make the same mistakes. Idk maybe its just me

    Dorian sapiens

    Wow, I really like that reading.

    Capitan Pepeñonga

    Well, it's kinda true, we are repeating the same mistakes over and over again

  21. Ultan Beare

    We don't build walls
    That is they
    Who build walls
    Should only apply
    To building
    Bridges ....

  22. Lesli D

    Would love to see you, Billy, play Hades when Hadestown comes to the UK. You would be so good in the role. Just a thought. Great song.

  23. LaurynMcK

    Y'all gotta listen to Hadestown or at least the version of this in it I stg

  24. Ben Shulman

    This just in foreign powers are supplying our enemy with ladders
    Love your voice Billy plz never stop singing

  25. Peter Cook

    Such a good question - no one answers of course

    strange lee

    A wall is a structure that defines an area, carries a load, or provides shelter or security.

  26. Cornfield

    I like this. I like the version by Anais Mitchell better

  27. Netter Kerl

    Just discovered you three days ago when a five second snippet of "Help Save the Youth of America" ran on TV. I remembered just one line from that song, but i finally found you through this few words.

    Amazing person and music! I'm runnig it up and down now half the day.

    Greetings from Germany, comrades.

    A Watt

    Welcome to Billy

  28. Daniel Buchholz

  29. Isismusicnow

    Great song, Billy

  30. theminecartgaming

    Just as good as it was live. Been waiting for a proper recording like this.

  31. ericblowtorch

    I wanna go over the wall. I wanna go under the wall. Please don't be waiting for me.

  32. Zondry Zeth

    We build the wall to keep us safe from the titans

    Nicolas Ruesch


  33. Shawn

    1st comment to recommend fighting capitalism by joining Industrial Workers of the World. Bragg rules.

    Cavalry Trooper

    Capitalism has a basic theme, one my parents and grandparents taught me. 'You don't work, you don't eat' it isn't until a bunch of people who don't want to work start shedding tears for compassion for their plight. Even when help comes, it doesn't change their attitude and they still expect without work.

    We give BILLIONS to other nations to 'help' and they still haven't done anything to improve the lives of their people. That isn't America's fault, what IS America's fault is continuing to dish out 'aid' to nations that just take. Capitalism is a failure? Corporations sell their products overseas at prices cheaper than the cost to make the product. Those costs are added to Americans, so it isn't like the greedy corporations are stealing..

    Capitalism also allows YOU the individual to take a cool idea you have and allows you to make, finance (a poor person today can post a video on 'go fund me, kickstarter, etc. to fund anything), and market your cool idea. If it is cool enough , you are free to set a price that others are willing to pay to get it. That is why the United States has so many advancements. Other nations strangle innovation (why make something the state is going to take away with no regard to the expense and labor you went through to create your cool idea) this is why most other nations have to wait for the U.S. to create something before they can do anything.

    Toxi The Femcel

    Cavalry Trooper wow, youre in a cult


    @Cavalry Trooper _sniff_ Pure _sniff sniff_ ideology

    Komarovo Sevastopal

    Reece You are just vomiting the stuff they have indoctrinated you with.

    Jay Blake

    @Cavalry Trooper maybe in 1830 but not under monopoly Imperialist capitalism. Foreign aid from America is just a tool used to keep other nations dependent which is whi socialist countries reject US aid, also putting a wrench through your idea that it's just communists leaching off of the hard work of Americans, it is only other capitalist countries that accept it.

    Also companies only sell where they can make a profit, this is self evident, think for yourself logically for just 30 seconds Jesus.

  34. Gary Williams

    Great song, but surely Anais Mitchell should be credited here as the writer?

    Daniel Bissex

    I ended up here in the first place thanks to an Anais Mitchell post singing its praises :)

    Gary Williams

    I've just seen a Facebook page where Billy acknowledges Anais' authorship. I'm sure this Youtube info is just an oversight. I hope it's corrected. By the way, if you don't know it, there's another great 'wall' song by Tom Russell


    As much as I appreciate the extra attention Billy Bragg's version will bring to this excellent song AND Anais Mitchell's remarkable theater piece, I have to say I prefer the Greg Brown version from 2010. Chilling.


    Oh, and as a "point of reference", here's her clean and basic presentation:

  35. Andrew Kremer

    I have been listening to Billy Bragg since some time in the early 80's (I have a signed copy of Spy vs Spy on vinyl from the Red Wedge tour when I got to share a bag of chips with him), and I swear he sounds even better now than he did then. A true artist.


    billy is more important now than ever


    No one else like him either. !

  36. 상상용내한가자

    good, very good.

    best song!!!!!!!