Cooks County (Pete Townshend) Towser Tunes, Inc. (adm. by Longitude Music Co.) - BMI

Pete: "I saw a documentary on TV about a hospital in Chicago called Cooks County Hospital [sic - actually Cook County Hospital] which is the only free hospital in America and the fact that the municipal authorities were applying to the Federal Government in America to get grants to keep it open. The grants were refused so the hospital was going to close. It was in a ghetto and it was mainly black people and it was mainly drug abuse and everything else, ghetto-influenced problems, which this hospital dealt with. Of course a lot of these people, you get blasted by a shotgun in a Chicago street and you get picked up by an ambulance, you get taken to hospital and unless you've got a Medicare card or insurance of something you get shoved straight out again. I just felt so moved by this that I just felt in a sense that I had to scribble out a few lines about it and that's how it came out. I just went in with the poem I'd written 'people are suffering...' and we turned it into this particular track."

Pete and The Who have been involved with charities in Chicago (and many other places besides) and The Who performed twice at the House Of Blues in Chicago November 12 and 13, 1999 raising money for Chicago's Maryville Academy charity benefiting neglected and abused children. This song was performed live only once during The Who's October 6, 1982 show at The Horizon in Rosemont, Illinois and has not been performed again after that. The ending of the version on the 1997 CD is extended by 8 seconds from the original fadeout and an echo is put on Roger's "people are suffering...people are hungry" towards the end. Click here to see the original lyric sheet: Cooks County

People are suffering
I'll say it again
People are suffering
I'll say it again
People are suffering
I'll say it again
So remember when you're looking for trouble
That trouble is already busy with weaker men

People are hungry
I'll say it again
People are hungry
I'll say it again
People are hungry
I'll say it again
So don't you abuse that body
It'll snap without assistance my friends

The song goes on
I'll sing again until the music enervates
The song goes on
The sting of pain will dull and finally fade away
The song goes on
Through centuries of history it reverberates
The song goes on
On curving comets track the music makes it way
This song is so long
It ends up where it begins

People are lonely
I'll say it again
People are lonely
I'll say it again
People are lonely
I'll say it again
So don't let them run too far from home
You'll be alone for sure on that you can depend

People are bleeding
I'll say it again
People are bleeding
I'll say it again
People are bleeding
I'll say it again
So put away that switchblade knife
Tighten up the knot that'll help this bloodshed end

The song goes on - the song goes on
This song
Is so long
It ends up where it begins.

People are suffering
I'll say it again and again
People are hungry
I'll say it again and again
People are lonely
I'll say it again and again.

This song appears on:

Source Length notes
It's Hard 3:52
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