No Sale reviews

No Sale (1992)


Some of his songs, such as “Stinkin Blinkin Sinkin,” are replete with potential slogans for the radical ’90s. “U.S. Rap: His Tory” is a tour de force account of U.S. history from a “right” point of view as told by the persona he calls George Shrub, a singing agent for the CIA (Committee to Intervene Anywhere). “They’re All Stupid” points the finger at those who poison the land and the water and the government’s duplicitous role in the sordid affair.

He personalizes songs, then hits the general corporate prey from S&Ls to the AMA. He takes you from a hope for great streets of music and people in “Have I Left Anything Out,” to how not to reason with the government in “Love Nazi,” or to the pollutants coming from “They’re All Stupid.” Top flight material. Seattle is an original home for Lippman reflected in “You Can’t Grow a Forest.” Get this CD. Your brain will expand with humor on serious subjects.

NUVO NEWSWEEKLY (Indianapolis):
“No Sale” is a superb showcase, ten original songs that cover topics ranging from the mundane and everyday, such as obnoxious auto drivers, to such global, post-Cold War concerns as the “Enemy of the Week.” The yearning and wistful come through on “You Can’t Grow a Forest,” and the enthusiastic and utopian (in the good sense) in Lippman’s vision of society after a revolution, “Have I Left Anything Out?” All of this is lined with creative rage, pungent wit, and the ability to laugh in the face of lies. The one song on “No Sale” that’s not a Lippman original, “Friend of the Fetus,” deserves special mention for its deft skewering of right-to-lifers, thus showing that even an issue as thorny as abortion can lend itself to trenchant satire.

Buy It

The Lyrics:


DL, guitars & vocals
Mari Fix, backup vocals
Dwain Hicks, bass
Ralph Spannenberg, drums

I bought some coffee and refused the styrofoam
I bought groceries and I brought my bags from home
I solar-heated my geodesic dome
My intentions are well-paved

But I threw my litter in a garbage can
Steada savin it for the recycle can
I don’t do everything I can
I’m goin to hell in a can

I commute and pollute in the rat race
I live too well, I take up too much space
I buy the right stuff and put it in the wrong place
I’m goin to hell in any case

I’m goin to hell, won’t you please come along?
I try to do the right thing
And I do, but I do it wrong
If I did the right thing
I wouldn’t have to sing this song so long

I try to keep up with the news though I hate it
I read about it in the New York Times
16,000 trees every Sunday morning
I’m gonna read the Times in hell

I wrote a letter to the President
But I didn’t send a telegram
Then I sent a telegram
But I didn’t make a call

Then I called but I was way too nice
I shoulda sounded more irate
Then I didn’t go to demonstrate
Instead I’m goin to hell

I got the nerve to talk about the timber raper
When I don’t use both sides of the scratch paper
I failed to foresee the S & L caper
I’m goin to S & L hell

If I’m so concerned about consumption
How come I got so many clothes
At least I bought em all second-hand
I’ll go to second-hand hell

I didn’t bring a cloth bag to shop
And somethin else I’ll bet ya you can’t top
I forgot to make the Fortune 500 stop
Makin a hell right here

I’m here in hell, make yourself at home
I try to do the right thing, but all I see is styrofoam
If I did the right thing, I wouldn’t have to sing this song
So long. Goodbye. That’s all.


DL, guitars & Vocals
Janet Wolfe, backup vocals
Chet Gardiner, bass
David Rokeach, drums
Mark Switzer, dobro

I was born in Indiana
Grew up in Kentucky
Don’t know how I survived Chicago
I guess I just got lucky

My oldest brother went to war
Second one went to crime
Youngest went on welfare
And we’re all doin time

I live in a factory
Eight hours every day
I risk my life
And then I die of boredom

I worked for Ford
For fifteen years
Then I got laid off
After the Vietnam War

We lost incentive
We used to be so proud
So patriotic, but now I wonder
What for!

Keep on a-workin, that’s what they told me
Later I found out somebody sold me
Keep on a-workin, everything’ll be ok
But you know sometimes I’m a-thinkin
There’s bound to be a better way

I used to go out and give some hell
To the demonstrators
I used to go out and yell
Why don’t you all get a job!

Then I got laid off,
Went down to the food stamp office
Now I’m a welfare bum

They were shoutin the streets
We were rippin off the people overseas
Companies would pay a dollar a day
For what they couldn’t steal

I was paid all right
Yeah, they kept me on their side
And in my pride I said “We’re the best
That’s how I feel!”

But now they’re movin the factories
Yeah, they’re movin em overseas
Cause there’s so much competition
And we’ve fallen to our knees

Must be bad over there
If it’s like this over here
Now I can’t even buy the things
I’ve made for all these years

Yeah the company hit the skids
There’s been layoffs left and right
To throw away a worker
Is such a waste

I’ve got feelings
Hell, I’ve even got expenses
I think it’s the company
That should be replaced

And they say I’m not tryin
That I’m not even buyin
The economy is dyin
And it’s all because of me

When I was young
I learned that anyone
Can get ahead, if somebody don’t make it
It’s cause he didn’t try

I was told I had a place assured
Looks like they told me wrong
They were wrong about it
But still they lie:


(Carole Rose Livingston)
DL, guitar & vocal

I am no friend to the fathers and mothers
And I am no friend to the sisters and brothers
And I am no friend to the weak and distressed
And I am no friend to the poor and oppressed, but

I’m a friend of the fetus
A friend of incomparable worth
I’m a friend of the fetus
Right up to the moment of birth

Once it’s a baby I will not go near it
I will not feed it and I will not rear it
And when it is crying I won’t even hear it
For I have no room in my heart for a human, but

I will not care for it, I won’t be there for it
I will not weep for it, I won’t lose sleep for it
I’ll back away from it, I won’t go gray from it
I will not pray for it, and I won’t pay for it, but


DL, guitar & vocals
Carol Denney, backup vocals
Chet Gardiner, bass
David Rokeach, drums
Carlos Sandoval, percussion
Melecio Magdaluyo, sax
Glenn Appel, trumpet

Have you ever been
To a nice country party or a real fine street fair
Some day it’s gonna be like that all the time everywhere
We could have a party every week out on the block
Close off the street and enjoy the crowd
Dancin all over, there be no reason to talk
Anyway the music be much too loud

Every evenin at six o’clock
Whole town walk around the square
No rival factions, no big attractions
The people will be the reason to be there
In the outlyin districts there’ll be music everywhere
No one will feel out of it unless they really want to
There’ll be no commercially-inspired loneliness to haunt you

Entrance to places of entertainment will be free
So you can wander in and out and dig new sounds
All this will come to be beca
Entertainers will be on salary
But they gotta clean up their own coffee grounds!

Ain’t that what life’s about? Have I left anything out?

Bridge A:
There are ways to make this world a place to live in
But we are told it’s out of reach and we should give in
We could surely win a world where all would be benevolence
If only those who live for dollars
Had a lick of common sense

First thing got to be put right
Woman gonna walk free in the street at night
Any part of town, any time of day
Any man cause trouble better kneel and pray
And people gonna smile and say hello when they go by
Without fear of assault for sex race creed or greed
And we won’t have to worry bout people rippin us off
Cause in general, we’ll be gettin what we need
And there won’t be nobody hoardin no money
Cause there won’t be any (money)
All necessities will be free
Many luxuries will not be existing
Though some will be abundant
While others will be regarded as redundant

Everybody will be learnin everything
That anybody ever wanted to know
Everybody will be goin everywhere
That anybody ever wanted to go
Anyone who wants to can engage in foreign travel
Foreign languages we’ll learn
But we’ll have no more foreign wars
Countries will remain still very different from each other
But not so separate, just a lot more equal

Ain’t that what life’s about? Have I left anything out?
Repeat bridge A

Four hours a week should take care of the garden
Leavin another three for work in the factory
Because you see our needs will be fewer
When we convert from consumer to doer
But of course no one will work by the hour
We’ll just work until the work at hand is done
Because for bread of course you must have flour
But for life, you must have fun

Ain’t that what life’s about? Have I left anything out?

Bridge B:
I’m tryin to tell you, we can win a world that’s fair
I can prove it, lotta these things already been done
Here and there
So let’s get together and try for somethin better

Big square buildings used to stand all around
Most of them by now been taken down
They were full of boring papers and boring days it’s true
They cost too much to heat and light
And they blocked off the view
And while we’re at it, it might be wise
To cut our cities down to size
Take out half the houses, let the gardens grow
The grass would be greener, the city would slow

Ain’t that what life’s about? Have I left anything out?

Bridge C:
You don’t have to believe it, but take a look around
There’s a lotta people who really care
When we get some of this other shit out of the way
We’re gonna stop fightin and learn to share

There will still be different kinds of people, oh yes
Each with their own favorite neighborhoods
But the rich people won’t all live up on the hill
Cos there won’t be no rich people hoardin all the goods

No more miners spendin days in a dark hole
Gettin brown lung tryin to get some black coal
People lift their faces to the sun
Knowing that they can rely on this one
And everything will be made more effecient
By the elimination of all kinds of waste
No more wasted energy on wasted products
Made for artificially expensive taste

Billboards will all be repainted
With different people’s ideas of how to have fun
There’ll be no more need for advertising
All the advertising will already have been done

A lot less cars, a lot less bars
Less time in stores, more time outdoors
Let’s not be fools, there will be schools
But when the reason for the livin
Is to laugh like gods above
Then the reason for the learnin
Will be learnin how to love

Ain’t that what life’s about? Have I left anything out?


DL, guitars, vocals, percussion
Ian Talcroft, guitars, slide
Derf Scratch, bass
Billy Edwards, drums
Roger Yale, piano
Rhonda Jessee, backup vocals
Ralph Spannenberg, congas

Footfall in the forest like a dream
Stop and splash at every stream
So full of wonder, makes you wanta scream
The inner city it ain’t

Makin a pilgrimage to the creek
I could be human in another week
In this place
All the while I seek to find
What I been missin

Slip and dance at every waterfall
Nobody can hear me here and so I call
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if this was all
Please don’t build a mall here

Runnin broken trails just like a deer
Only wishin you were here
Hopin no one else will come near
Water tumble down the mountain side
Make you wanta go along for the ride
You can feel the spirit as it hits it stride
It’s different here, different here

Suck in the sharp air of the mountain
So many kinds of birds I stopped countin
I’m drinkin from my youth fountain
Soda fountain it ain’t

Allowed myself to feel a little bit of bliss
Shakin and shoutin I want more of this
All the times I said “it’s been real”
This is the part I forgot to feel

Bend in the road, bend in the river
If your mother gives you love
In return what do you give her
I haven’t been faithful
Dear God, what have I done?

I strayed onto the road, out of the woods
In search of the sun
But you need a little pain, need a little rain
Not too much

Forest is a world all its own
You can feel it sigh as the sun goes down
Listen……..and leave it alone

Runnin broken trails just like a deer
Only wi
shin you were here
Hopin no one else will come near
Moss and lichen over a sylvan stream
Blue wildflowers in a field of green
Why would anyone want to do you harm?
You can’t grow a forest on a tree farm
You can’t grow a forest
At all


DL, guitar & vocals
Ellen Moore & Carol Denney, backup vocals
Johanna Henry, oboe & English Horn
Chet Gardiner, bass
David Rokeach, drums
Jack Gilder, pennywhistle

To remember the story, we walked upon the moor
There was a famine on the land
People on their knees, ruled from overseas
To remember the truth of why they had to die
Was it God’s will or the queen’s?

And though I never had stood there till then
I knew the tale from beginning to end
And we remembered, and we understood
And we said we would do what we could
Forever if it takes that long
We’ve got a right to live
and it’s right to give our all
To right this wrong

To remember the feeling that comes with the falling
Of a new machine to keep the peace
Or was it the power?
It was the hour of despair
And we stood in the shadow

To remember the wind blowing free
To remember the tree standing tall
The planet is shaking, but are we waking
Why are we taking so long


Personnel: Same as on Goin to Hell

Come all you good people and lend me an ear
And I’ll tell you a story that you don’t wanta hear
Well I don’t wanta tell it so I guess we’re even
Come all you good people and don’t be leavin

I put on the heat in my cold water flat
But the heat wouldn’t heat so I put on my hat
Drank cold tea by the pale moonlight
Don’t tell me it’s gonna be all right!

I’m on an elevator goin down in debt
They tell me whole continents are goin like that
While the banks get bigger with their black and green mail
But don’t tell me that the banks won’t fail
I…….got a feelin like I’m sinkin
I think we’re all gettin screwed
By those stinkin blinkin blankety bankin fools!

They’re tearin down the woods to suck up the wealth
Tearin down the right to the national health
Puttin up condos in the wilderness
If it’s a matter of money they Just Say Yes

There’s a hole in the sky but they say you can’t prove it
No profit in ozone so they just remove it
Is the planet heating up, well maybe it’s so
But in a free market no zone can Just Say No

By those stinkin blinkin blankety bankin speculatin fools!

Oh the West buys the East and sells out the South
There’s no freedom of speech for a hungry mouth
The peace dividend they spend on oil raids
Shoulda spent that money on a cure for AIDS

Presidents prattle bout a war on drugs
But watch their hands, they’re white collar thugs
They’re cryin for the kids, crocodile tears
If I was a judge, I’d give em thirty years
…each offense…to be run in sequence…first parole date,
2025…parole board: three unemployed teenagers from
Harlem…and their mothers
By those stinkin blinkin blankety bankin speculating
Sherman tankin fools!


Personnel: Same as Goin to Hell,
plus Ian Talcroft on slide.

Well I pulled into America, on a big bird I did fly
They asked me where I’d been, who I knew and
where we met and why
Who did you stay with, and how do you know them?
What do you do for a living, what kind of music do you play?
No, I’m not really interested, I’m just tryin to make your day

Well they asked me to set up my suitcase, and open up the locks
They looked at all my guitar strings, and my dirty socks
I was glad I wan’t hidin nothin, there was no cause for me to get caught, see
Cause when they started readin my diary, I said what are you, some kinda Nazi?

I said why are you doin that? And she did not reply
I said thank you for your silence, at least you didn’t lie
Well it musta been kinda unusual for a citizen to have an opinion
Cause right away some kinda superior rushed over to defend his minion

He acted like he had the idea that he was right and I was wrong
He said what’s your trouble, I said you’re pokin your face where it don’t belong
He said we just wanta know who we’re dealin with, I said haven’t you heard the news?
If you build a wall to high to see over it, you’re bound to lose
Whatever it was you were defending, it has happened before
Y’all oughta be ashamed of yourselves, where’s the goddamn door?

Well I think he understood the point I was makin cause he pulled me to the side
He said we have the right to question you, and you have the right to reply
We have the right to search you, and the right to lock you up
We have the right to do our job, and you have the right to shut up
Do you have any more question, or are you back in your place?
I said I’m leavin now, and it’ll be too soon the next time I see your face

Well the moral of this story, the moral of this rant
Is simply that one should never try to reason with the government
Don’t count your chickens before they’ve been checked through
Don’t burn your bridges before they are behind you
You can’t argue with a uniform, it’s a waste of spit
But stand up for your rights, in other words, Give a Shit!


DL, guitars & vocals
Derf Scratch, bass
Billy Edwards, drums
Ian Talcroft, guitars
Roger Yale, organ

I went into this mini-mart, the coffee was free
And let me tell ya it was worth it
But when I was leaving the lot, there was a Cadillac comin in
Forty miles an hour in a parking lot, must be original sin

XKE up behind me, just like he just bought the lane
Bumper to bumper at 65
I’m sorry Mr. Fast Track if I caused you some delay
I’d hit the brakes, but I was programmed to survive

Don’t tailgate me, there might be a cat run across
Don’t tailgate me, or it might just be a kid
Don’t tailgate me, you drive like a bully
I’m gonna have you arrested, and then you won’t go to heaven

Sign says road construction up ahead, must mean speed up to 75
There’s something about you that just ain’t quite all there
I think you’re a piece o’s——-ure you know how to drive

Sign says road narrows, they speed along in the lane we’re gonna lose
Cut in
at the last second, got me on a short fuse
I guess that’s called a life style, some people just can’t see
How many new friends they could make each day, with a little common courtesy
It’s all about people who think other people are in their way
It’s all about people who drive like Make My Day
It’s all about people who think they’re the only ones
Drivers like that, gimme the runs

This is for all the people who hit the brakes at last possible point
Right behind your bumper when you’re at a stop
God forbid they should slow down gradually
Wouldn’t wanta see the brake lining business drop

And what about those people on the freeway who pass and cut in
At the instant before they hit their turnoff
I don’t know if they’re greedy or stupid
But they ain’t got all their cups in the cupboard
And one or two of those cups musta usta been full of Smirnoff


George Shrub, vocals*
Rhonda Jessee, backup vocals
Fred Cirillo, All other Noises, samples,
and instruments. Lyrics
*Q: Who is George Shrub?
A: The world’s only known singing CIA agent (Committee to Intervene Anywhere), whose anti-folk songs and News Speak narrowcasts have cast a pall over Dave Lippman’s concerts for years, from the Reagan for Shah campaign to Operation Desert Storm Troop. Here he offers the Right Point of View on U.S. history.


DL, guitar & vocals
John Guth, All other instruments

Poison from some atom bomb experiments
Turned up twenty years later in the streams of Jersey City
Invisible contamination causin who knows what mutation
The plague is invisible but it sure ain’t pretty

Chemicals dumped in Times Beach, Missouri
And all the A.M.A. can say is that it’s
too soon to call it dangerous
Kinda gives you confidence in the medical profession
Nice to know that everything is arranged for us

Then the government calls a commission
To investigate themselves
And round up all the perpetrators and bail em out

The underground water is contaminated
There’s no national system to check it out
Just a national system to contaminate it
A national disgrace and a race with doubt

Coal and chemicals, byproducts of buyoffs
Trickle down and seep into our sustenance
Kinda funny, kinda stupid
Kinda terrifying

Kinda gets you thinkin, kinda gets you cryin
Either somebody’s stupid, or somebody’s lyin

Industry is dumpin and pumpin poison
Into the land and the water and the air and the brain
They got a lotta nerve, they got a lotta muscle
Enough to shove us all down the drain

Then the corporation calls a commission
To investigate themselves
And round up all the perpetrators
And put em in charge

Kinda gets you thinkin, kinda gets you cryin
Either they’re all stupid, or they’re all lyin


DL, guitar & vocals
Chet Gardiner, bass
David Rokeach, drums
Roger Yale, piano
Derf Scratch, sax

The other night, I was havin a short one down at the covert cafe
Thinkin about them poor S & L’s, thank God I’m not the one to pay
The Soviet’s didn’t do it, and I don’t think it was Saddam
The whole affair is somewhat unique
I know someone’s out to get America, and burn our flag
It must be our brand new post-cold war enemy of the week

I say God bless that perestroika over there in Russia
And everywhere else, except here
But with all of our enemies becoming our friends
Why do I still feel this fear
The government’s broke, foreign trade is a joke
Our ethics are under attack
It’s obvious the Cuban-backed terrorists
Are the sinister force behind crack

They’ve had something against us from day one
When they took our casinos away
It’s true they have health care that’s better than ours
That’s all the more reason to say:
Let’s give em TV, name it after Marti
They’re the enemy of the week

There’s terrorists out in the jungle
They’re shooting our kids up with dope
They want to destroy our democracy
They have no respect for our Pope
These Maoist voodoo drug barons
Are directed from a Cuban think tank
We’ll root them out and restore pluralism
A choice between the IMF and the World Bank
Let’s give em TV, then like us they’ll be free
They’re our brand new recycled 90’s post-cold war all-
purpose enemy of the week