Earth Doctor / Climate Troubadour

You’ve Got to be Good

Here’s a lesson that I learned in school,       C  E7
Right along with the golden rule:                   A7
If you want to be great,                                   D7 G7 
You’ve got to be good                                      
C C#dim G G+5

It’s not polite when you you brag and boast.
It’s not about who’s got the most.
If you want to be great,  you’ve got to be good.  

People don’t like being put to shame,      F  F#dim6
Don’t like it when you call ‘em names.       C Gm C7
It’s love not hate that makes your great.  F  F#dim6
Some things are never out of date.             C A7 D7 G

Don’t throw the ladies under the bus,
And pay your taxes like the rest of us.
If you want to be great,  you’ve got to be good.

Russian hacks, alternative facts,
Fill the cabinet with Goldman Sachs, 
If you want to be great,  FIRST you’ve got to be good.

Don’t be a bully or be infantile,
And tell the truth at least once in a while
If you want to be great,  you’ve got to be good.

Can’t fix the climate with your head in the sand. 
Exxon doesn’t need a helping hand.  
You know the carbon’s really got to stay in the ground  
you can’t fix education by tearing it down!

Don’t you steal our wealth, Or mess with our health, 
And try to keep those little hands to yourself
If you want to be great,  you’ve got to be good.
If you want to be great,  you’ve got to be good!

©Doug Hendren and Nancy Beall, 2017

What’s it about? Inspired by the Women’s March on Washington last week, it’s about the general decline in basic manners many people have noticed in our fair nation under the influence of the recent presidential election. In a nation built by immigrants, a broadly shared sense of freedom and opportunity, true representative government and separation of church and state, we seem to be retreating into hardening, ideological extremism. Literally millions marched last week in the US, marching for women’s rights, human rights, healthcare, and the basic right to social and economic dignity for the general population. The last slide on the video says it all.

I America wants to be great again, let her return to being good, good to one another and to our neighbors around the world.


  1. Love this, Doug!

  2. Thanks Doug and Nany

  3. Once again, a great posting, Doug. Indeed, to be remembered with love, you got to be good. Keep up the wonderful work! And I liked Nancy’s voice-in harmony at the end.
    Much love,

  4. You just get better and better! Not sure if there’s a “like” button anywhere, but this is a lyric worth spreading. Wish I had a good picture of the march in Raleigh, NC to send along.

  5. Thanks, Jinny! The march was wonderful. The lyrics were mostly derived from all the clever signs. Feel free to pass it around! -Doug

  6. ! Another wonderful song! Thank you!

  7. Thanks, Doug! Your song and lyrics are amazing. You wrote them more than a year ago, and they’re even more relevant today!

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