Jump to content

REAL Memorial Day Songs


Recommended Posts

this is an early request for another article I will be writing for Memorial Day, which is in late May.

What I need are songs that are about veterans/military service, etc. in any genre of music, and why you like that particular song (what it means to you).

Your help is really appreciated!! Thanks everyone! :) :)

Edited by Guest
changed heading to new angle...
Link to post
Share on other sites

Khe Sanh - Cold Chisel

Probably THE definitive OzRock track, by the definitive OzRock band. Not very happy, although the music is "up". ABout a Vietnam vet who finds it hard to cope with back home aftre thw war.

And it's a lot more fun than:

Ruby, Don't Take Your Love To Town - Kenny Rogers

... and

I Was Only Nineteen - Redgum

The song that always makes ne cry:

Two Little Boys - Rolf Harris

Smiley - Ronnie Burns

Everywhere - Billy Bragg

I don't know if there are any celebratory/upbeat songs about war or service, not since George M Cohan anyway.

Lbbb

Link to post
Share on other sites

And the Band played Waltzing Matilda ~ The Pogues

there are many different versions, but this one was the one b-f introduced me to via the TTs

it tells the story of a young Australian who gets to war, fights against the Ottoman Empire (Turkey) in WWI and gets injured.

"Waltzing Matilda" is an actual song, something like an inofficial Australian anthem (correct me if I'm wrong)

Johnnie Turk was ready, oh he primed himself well

He rained us with bullets and he showered us with shell

And in five minutes flat we were all blown to hell

nearly blew us all back home to Australia.

And the band played Waltzing Matilda

as we stuck to bury our slain

We buried ours and the Turks buried theirs

and we started all over again

:bow: :bow:

Edited by Guest
see posts below
Link to post
Share on other sites

"Waltzing Mathilda" is an actual song, something like an inofficial Australian anthem (correct me if I'm wrong

Yes indeed. You haven't quite got the spelling right, but Waltzing Matilda is a poem by our most famous poet (really our ONLY famous poet), then turned into the most popular Australian "trad" song of them all.

It's about a homeless bloke who steals a sheep, is caught by the police and escapes by jumping in a creek and drowning himself. THat's why we love it.

See ya,

Lee.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Brothers in Arms ~ Dire Straits

Through these fields of destruction

Baptisms of fire

I've witnessed your suffering as the battles raged higher

And though they did hurt me so bad

In the fear and alarm you did not desert me

My brothers in arms

Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember an old patriotic song that's been used in some movies like How the West Was Won and Stalag 17

When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again

When Johnny comes marching home again,

Hurrah! Hurrah!

We'll give him a hearty welcome then

Hurrah! Hurrah!

The men will cheer and the boys will shout

The ladies they will all turn out

And we'll all feel gay when Johnny comes marching home.

The old church bell will peal with joy

Hurrah! Hurrah!

To welcome home our darling boy,

Hurrah! Hurrah!

The village lads and lassies say

With roses they will strew the way,

And we'll all feel gay when Johnny comes marching home.

Get ready for the Jubilee,

Hurrah! Hurrah!

We'll give the hero three times three,

Hurrah! Hurrah!

The laurel wreath is ready now

To place upon his loyal brow

And we'll all feel gay when Johnny comes marching home.

Let love and friendship on that day,

Hurrah, hurrah!

Their choicest pleasures then display,

Hurrah, hurrah!

And let each one perform some part,

To fill with joy the warrior's heart,

And we'll all feel gay when Johnny comes marching home

:cool:

Link to post
Share on other sites

Drive On - Johnny Cash

Well, I got a friend named Whiskey Sam

He was my boonierat buddy for a year in Nam

He said I think my country got a little off track

Took 'em twenty-five years to welcome me back

But it's better than not coming back at all

Many a good man I saw fall

And even now, every time I dream I hear the men

and the monkeys in the jungle scream

Drive on

It don't mean nothin'

My children love me, but they don't understand

And I got a woman who knows her man, Drive on

It don't mean nothin', it don't mean nothin'

Drive on

Well, I remember one night,

Tex and me Rappelled in on a hot L.Z.

We had our 16's on rock and roll

And with all of that fire,

I was scared and cold

I was crazy, and I was wild

And I have seen the tiger smile

I spit in a bamboo viper's face

And I'd be dead, but by God's grace

Drive on

It don't mean nothin'

My children love me, but they don't understand

And I got a woman who knows her man, Drive on

It don't mean nothin', it don't mean nothin'

Drive on

It was a slow walk in a sad rain

And nobody tried to be John Wayne

I came home, but Tex did not

And I can't talk about the hit he got

But I got a little limp now when I walk

And I got a little tremolo when I talk

But my letter read from Whiskey Sam

You're a walkin' talkin' miracle from Vietnam

Drive on

It don't mean nothin'

My children love me, but they don't understand

And I got a woman who knows her man , Drive on

It don't mean nothin', it don't mean nothin'

Drive on

Link to post
Share on other sites

No particular songs that come to mind but I dug up a couple of Memorial Day sites and some war song lists that may be helpful to you.

US White House Commission on Remembrance (web site)

U.S. Memorial Day History and Information on U.S. War Memorials (web site)

Memorial Day Music (link taken from above site's main page)

Role of music in WWII (from Wikipedia)

List of songs about the Vietnam War (from Wikipedia)

List of songs about the Sep. 11 attacks (from Wikipedia)

List of anti-war songs (from Wikipedia)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Not many people realize this, but "This Time Around" by Hanson is written from the view of a solider who's saying that he/she will die for what he/she believes in.

It's getting colder

In this ditch where I lie

I'm feeling older

And I'm wondering why

I heard they told her

It was tell and live or die

I didn't know her

But I know why she lied

I didn't know her

But I know why she died

Yeah

You can't say, I didn't give it

I won't wait, another minute

On our way, this time around

Whoa yeah

You can't say, I didn't give it

I won't wait, another minute

On our way, this time around

Yeah

And we won't go down

Yeah

I heard them say that dreams

Should stay in your head

Well I feel ashamed of

The things that I've said

Put on these chains

And you can live a free life

Well I'd rather bleed

Just to know why I died

Yeah

And we won't go down

And we won't go down

Yeah

And we won't go down

Yeah

Well all I know is

That fear has got to go

This time around

This time around

Well I've started feeling

Like I don't want to fight

Give in to the giving

And put out the light

Cannons are blazin'

Shower these moonlit skies

Then I remember

And I know why he died

Do you know why I died?

Yeah

And we won't go down

And we won't go down

And we won't go down

Yeah

Wouldn't it be nice if we all picked a song to dedicate to a veteran we know or are inspired by? I guess that would be in another thread, though. I'd personally dedicate that song to my great uncle Orbie, who was an Army photographer in the Korean War. He always says that the government censored his photographs of the wounded because they were too graphic.

Edited by Guest
Link to post
Share on other sites

Mr. Lonely by Bobby Vinton and The Curb Girls.

It's a re-recording of Bobby Vinton's 1964 hit Mr. Lonely - his voice mixed with the voiceover of two separate little girls reading their letters.

The first says "Dear Michael..........your little sister"; the second one says "Dear Daddy........your little one......PS today I lost another tooth"

This was aired during Desert Shield/Desert Storm (1990/1991). Pretty cool for those who haven't heard it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

might be a long shot, but Yellow Ledbetter might fit too

The song was written during the first gulf war, when "Papa Bush" was President, as Eddie calls him. The story is about a young Grunger kid, all dressed up in his flannels with the long greasy hair. His brother goes off to fight in the war and gets killed. He gets a letter that comes in one of those yellow army envelopes and learns of his brother's death. So, all upset, he decides to go out and walk it off. On his walk he passes by a neat, middle-aged or elderly couple sitting on their front porch having some tea, and he sees that they have an American flag out. He gives a wave, because he feels like he relates: "The flag, my brother, you know..." But they don't know, of course. They don't know what's underneath the grunge and the long hair. All they see are the outward appearances, and they don't wave back.
Edited by Guest
Link to post
Share on other sites

Chicken Fried by the Zac Brown Band is a goofy little song about a Georgia boy and the things he loves, but then there's a nifty little breakdown in the middle:

I thank God for my life

And for the stars and stripes

May freedom forever fly, let it ring.

Salute the ones who died

The ones that give their lives so we don`t have to sacrifice

All the things we love

Like our chicken fried...

They opened up for my beloved Sugarland this past fall. During this part of the song, they brought up a local soldier on stage. Damn if I didn't get a little misty. I always say that I don't support war but I support those who defend our country.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...