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Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)

sharyn 20 Mar 03 - 02:05 AM
Joe Offer 20 Mar 03 - 02:36 AM
sharyn 20 Mar 03 - 01:34 PM
Áine 20 Mar 03 - 02:12 PM
sharyn 20 Mar 03 - 09:50 PM
Jon Bartlett 20 Mar 03 - 10:06 PM
Night Owl 20 Mar 03 - 10:18 PM
Neighmond 20 Mar 03 - 10:28 PM
sharyn 21 Mar 03 - 01:00 AM
Mark Clark 21 Mar 03 - 01:02 AM
sharyn 29 Mar 03 - 10:19 PM
GUEST,jim 30 Mar 03 - 12:28 AM
sharyn 31 Mar 03 - 01:12 PM
GUEST,Jim 02 Apr 03 - 02:36 AM
Charley Noble 02 Apr 03 - 08:42 AM
sharyn 02 Apr 03 - 01:39 PM
radriano 02 Apr 03 - 04:41 PM
Lane 02 Apr 03 - 08:58 PM
sharyn 03 Apr 03 - 01:14 AM
Charley Noble 07 Apr 03 - 01:06 PM
GUEST,Hawker 07 Apr 03 - 04:46 PM
sharyn 16 Apr 03 - 12:22 PM
InOBU 16 Apr 03 - 08:30 PM
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Subject: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 02:05 AM

Hi Everybody,

I'm posting the lyrics to an anti-war song that I finished tonight. I started working on it during the Gulf War and felt compelled to give it another go tonight. So, here it is, so new that it has no title yet. I'll take suggestions.

Lyrics: Sharyn Dimmick (all rights reserved)
Tune: Stephen Foster ("Old Uncle Ned")

1)        There is an old story of right and of wrong
        That we heard long ago, long ago,
        And when the war drums beat the soldiers march on
        Because that is the story they know.

2)        Some are leaving the love in their own true love's eye.
        Some are leaving their children at home.
        Some are leaving forever and going to die
        For the beat of that old hollow drum.

Cho.        Then lay down the bayonet and gun,
        Silence the bugle and the drum,
        For we've no more heart to act this way:
        Just see what our warfare has done.

3)        If your homeland is riddled with craters and graves,
        Sown with landmines and bombs from the sky,
        Full of widows and orphans and wounded and dead
        Do you want anybody to die?

Cho.

4)        There's another old story our history yields,
        Let us listen as never before:
        Let us beat swords to plowshares and lay down our shields --
        Let us not study war anymore.

Final Cho.

That's it. Perhaps some helpful person could post the Uncle Ned tune (I have no way of creating a Midi). Feel free to sing it, take it to rallies, etc. Just remember to credit me with the lyrics and Stephen Foster with the tune. Namaste.

Sharyn


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 02:36 AM

Tune coming right up. Nice song, Sharyn.
In the meantime, you can click here for a MIDI. Click here for a better one. Part of the tune sounds like "The Outside Track." I've also posted my transcription to Mudcat Midis, but I think this one is better than mine.
-Joe Offer-

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 01:34 PM

Additions and Corrections from Sharyn:

Hi Everybody,

I'm still tinkering a bit with this one. I have a title now: "The Old Hollow Drum." And I've changed the chorus slightly, taking out "silence," with its death echoes ("silencer," etc.) and substituting "quiet" which is more peaceful.

So, the revised chorus is:

So lay down the bayonet and gun,
Quiet the bugle and the drum,
For we've no more heart to act this way:
Just see what our warfare has done.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Áine
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 02:12 PM

Dear sharyn,

When you've finished 'tinkering' with your song, please let me know so I can put it in the Mudcat Songbook -- that is, if I have your permission to do so.

All the best, Áine


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 09:50 PM

O.K., Aine, thanks. One more verse, the last, I'm quite sure.

5) When we've walked in the shoes of our enemies -- all --
   When our hearts all are broken as one,
   When we've come to our knees and the tears start to fall
   We will know that our warfare is done.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Jon Bartlett
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 10:06 PM

A lovely song, Sharyn!


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Night Owl
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 10:18 PM

sharyn....thanks for this one.......esp. the chorus.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Neighmond
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 10:28 PM

What of "The silence of the Drum"?

Chaz


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 21 Mar 03 - 01:00 AM

Chaz, thanks for your suggestion -- I'm pretty sure I have my title now, taken from one of the lines.

Nightowl -- I agree, the chorus is better than the verses, especially on paper (it sings pretty well). I never thought I'd say this, but if you can come up with verses I like better, send them to me and I'll give you a co-writing credit.

Jon -- Thank you. It's nice to be appreciated. If you like it, please start singing it wherever you think it will do some good.

Cheers!

Sharyn


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Mark Clark
Date: 21 Mar 03 - 01:02 AM

Sharyn, Very nice work. Thanks.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 10:19 PM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: GUEST,jim
Date: 30 Mar 03 - 12:28 AM

Sorry, Sharyn, While I thoroughly agree with the sentiment of the song, I regret to say that I wasn't at all impressed with your lyrics. Your meter is all over the place for the tune as is your rhyme scheme (if you mean to have a rhyme scheme try to keep it for all the verses);
V1 Wrong/Ago/On/Know - ABCB close but "Wrong" doesn't rhyme with "On".
V2 Eye/Home/Die/Drum - ABAD
CH Gun/Drum/Way/Done - ABCA
V3 Graves/Sky/Dead/Die - ABCB
V4 Yields/Before/Shields/Anymore - ABAB
If you had set this to your own tune you may claim "poetic license" but not to a Stephen Foster tune.
Please accept this as constructive criticism like the teacher you had in 6th grade. Please keep trying.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 31 Mar 03 - 01:12 PM

Well, Jim,

I didn't need any "constructive criticism." I am an adept of off-rhyme, aka slant rhyme, well-versed in the folk lyric and in modern formal poetry. The song sings beautifully -- tunes have a way of smoothing out any metrical variations (which are "allowed" anyway).

Be impressed or not, as you like. I can write "textbook perfect" poetry and have done so (references available on request). I try for something greater.

Best,

Sharyn


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: GUEST,Jim
Date: 02 Apr 03 - 02:36 AM

1. Yes, you do - and you said you'd take suggestions.
2. No, you're not - at least you haven't proved it with this one.
3. No. it doesn't.
4. No, they don't (work on the meter).
5. I would allow it if it was your own tune.
6. Not impressed.
7. Please post some real poetry.
8. I don't need someone else to tell me what is poetry.
9. Keep trying.
10. Study someone like Phil Oakes who really knew how to write an anti-war song. It needs to have anger behind it.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Charley Noble
Date: 02 Apr 03 - 08:42 AM

Sharyn-

I'm still trying to fit the various "midi" to your verses, probably not as well as you're singing your song.

I've been mulling over your new chorus and wonder whether it might work even better as this:

So lay down the bayonet and gun,
STILL the bugle and the drum,
For we've no more heart to act this way:
Just see what our warfare has done.

As a single syllable word it seems to work more complementary with "lay" to my ears. The problem I have with "still" is that the audience might not catch its meaning as quickly as "quiet."

Judy and I hope to hear you sing this when we return to San Francisco for one of her conferences the week of 7/24.

Peace,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 02 Apr 03 - 01:39 PM

Hi Charley,

Good, it will be fun to see you and Judy again.

As to the proposed alteration of "quiet" to "still," it doesn't work because the tune requires a two syllable word there. It might help you to know that the original chorus of the Stephen Foster song was:

So lay down the shovel and the hoe.
Hang up the fiddle and the bow.
For there's no more work for poor old Ned
He's gone where the good brothers go.

My chorus fits this exactly, metrically.

That's one of the problems with midis -- fitting them with words. If you PM me with your address I'd be glad to make a crude demo for you.

Now, Jim,

First of all, you misread my post re: suggestions. I was soliciting suggestions for a title in my first post. Then I came up with one myself,"The Old Hollow Drum" and added it later. Beyond the title, my offer was to look at verses anyone submitted in case anyone had an inspiration for a verse.

Clearly, you and I don't see things in the same way, either regarding metrics and offrhyme, or in terms of what anti-war songs require -- from my point of view, anger fuels anger.

I am familiar with some of Phil Ochs' work -- and not impressed with some of it. The only song of his I really love is "There But For Fortune."

I do not need anyone to tell me what poetry is either. I am secure in my knowledge and abilities there (and I have academic credentials as well).

You asked for "real poetry." Here is a formal poem, a sonnet.

Lovesong

Eve bit the apple, and Persephone
The pomegranate, and I followed suit
And left you, reaching for exotic fruit,
Vines and thorns and rinds unknown to me.
Eve ate her fill. Persephone just tasted
Six tiny kernels. And this glittering bough
Seems hardly worth my silly reaching now,
Not at all worth the grapes which now lie wasted.
Eve landed outside Eden, full of hate,
Persephone, with blackstained hands in hell
For half a year, and I here. My life needs
Your sweetness, sweetness that we shared of late --
The rubies in the pomegranate shell,
Not just the apple core and poison seeds.

Sharyn Dimmick
25 January 1980.

All rights reserved.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: radriano
Date: 02 Apr 03 - 04:41 PM

Sharyn,

You are a fine songwriter. Guest Jim seems to delight in nitpikking and offering unwanted advice. As he is the only one to voice such vehement criticism to your song I would suggest that 1) he remove the burr from his saddle and that 2) you stop responding to him.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Lane
Date: 02 Apr 03 - 08:58 PM

Agreed,

Sharyn... a song is how it feels, hardly a mathematical thing.... anyway.. .I would love to hear a "crude demo", as you call it... perhaps it could be posted somewhere for folks to hear?

Keep at it

Lane


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 03 Apr 03 - 01:14 AM

Thanks all,

Lane, I can't post music on the computer (don't have the skills or capability). I was offering to make a quick crude tape recording for Charley. If you want a quick crude recording, PM me with your address and I'll do one for you, too. Sooner or later I'll get into the studio and do it right.


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: Charley Noble
Date: 07 Apr 03 - 01:06 PM

Sharyn-

Your tape arrived today. As I listen to your words and tune, the fresh noon-day Baghdad scenes from CNN flash through my mind, and I also hear the old echo of the Civil War songs, "Shiloh's Hill" and "The Vacant Chair." It's a dangerous song if you let yourself be swept along with it.

Peace,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: GUEST,Hawker
Date: 07 Apr 03 - 04:46 PM

Sharyn,
The words are lovely, As for Jim, well he has his opinion, a song is only ever as good as the ear of the listener - and different people like different things. Sometimes I have read words and thought it didn't fit the meter, only to hear them sung with true emotion and realised it didn't matter and that they actually serve to punctuate the song, and give it depth, If you wrote the greatest song ever written, there would always be someone who didn't like it. I do - and well done!
Perhaps Jim could give us one of his songs to rip apart?
BTW, Love the poem too :0)
Cheers, Lucy


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: sharyn
Date: 16 Apr 03 - 12:22 PM

Thank you all, especially Charley and Lucy (My email was completely kaput for about two weeks so I'm just getting back to you now).

Glad you like the song, Charley. If you really like it, go sing it somewhere. See you this summer.

Sharyn


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Subject: RE: Brand New Anti-War Song (3/19/03)
From: InOBU
Date: 16 Apr 03 - 08:30 PM

Good song Sharyn:
As to Jim's comments, as a somewhat prolific ballad writer myself, you get lots of it, and best to just nod politly while thinking of something else -sometimes someone even sends along a good idea... Jim, dear fellow, I am a great fan of Phil Oachs, but, one need not study anyone to write a song, you write a song because the song is already there, singing itself in your head and you just let it out. Some are gentle some are angry. Constructive critisim gets a little out of bounds when it gets pedantic.
Sharyn, drop me a pm and I will send you my song book and a few CDs when I can afford to do so.
Cheers and keep singing
Larry


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