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Music selectors, pages, etc.
American Tune
By Donna
July 13, 2023 4:13 pm
Category: Music

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My favorite Paul Simon song, musically and lyrically. His lyrics here are particularly prescient.

Many's the time I've been mistaken
And many times confused
Yes, and I've often felt forsaken
And certainly misused

Oh, but I'm alright, I'm alright
I'm just weary to my bones
Still, you don't expect to be bright and bon vivant
So far away from home, so far away from home

And I don't know a soul who's not been battered
I don't have a friend who feels at ease
I don't know a dream that's not been shattered
Or driven to its knees

But it's alright, it's alright
For we lived so well so long
Still, when I think of the
Road we're traveling on
I wonder what's gone wrong
I can't help it, I wonder what has gone wrong

And I dreamed I was dying
I dreamed that my soul rose unexpectedly
And looking back down at me
Smiled reassuringly

And I dreamed I was flying
And high up above my eyes could clearly see
The Statue of Liberty
Sailing away to sea
And I dreamed I was flying

We come on the ship they call The Mayflower
We come on the ship that sailed the moon
We come in the age's most uncertain hours
And sing an American tune

Oh, and it's alright, it's alright, it's alright
You can't be forever blessed
Still, tomorrow's going to be another working day
And I'm trying to get some rest
That's all I'm trying to get some rest

- Paul Simon


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Comments on "American Tune":

  1. by Curt_Anderson on July 13, 2023 4:29 pm
    I know the song, of course. I hadn't given the lyrics much appreciation before. I would have quibbled with the line about the Mayflower. We, most of us including Simon's family, are a nation of more recent immigrants, captive slaves and indigenous people after all.

    Simon has since updated those lines to read:
    We didn't come here on The Mayflower
    We came in a ship in blood red moon


  2. by Indy! on July 13, 2023 9:13 pm

    You want song lyrics that look incredibly prescient these days?

    Once the religious, the hunted and weary
    Chasing the promise of freedom and hope
    Came to this country to build a new vision
    Far from the reaches of Kingdom and pope

    Like good Christians some would burn the witches
    Later some got slaves to gather riches

    But still from near and far to seek America
    They came by thousands, to court the wild
    But she just patiently smiled and bore a child
    To be their spirit and guiding light

    And once the ties with the crown had been broken
    Westward in saddle and wagon it went
    And till the railroad linked ocean to ocean
    Many the lives which had come to an end

    While we bullied, stole and bought a homeland
    We began the slaughter of the red man

    But still from near and far to seek America
    They came by thousands to court the wild
    But she just patiently smiled and bore a child
    To be their spirit and guiding light

    The Blue and Grey they stomped it
    They kicked it just like a dog
    And when the war was over
    They stuffed it just like a hog

    And though the past has its share of injustice
    Kind was the spirit in many a way
    But its protectors and friends have been sleeping
    Now it's a monster and will not obey

    The spirit was freedom and justice
    And its keepers seemed generous and kind
    Its leaders were supposed to serve the country
    But now they won't pay it no mind
    Cause the people grew fat and got lazy
    Now their vote is a meaningless joke
    They babble about law and order
    But it's all just an echo of what they've been told

    Yeah, there's a monster on the loose
    It's got our heads into the noose
    And it just sits there watchin'

    The cities have turned into jungles
    And corruption is stranglin' the land
    The police force is watching the people
    And the people just can't understand
    We don't know how to mind our own business
    'Cause the whole world's got to be just like us
    Now we are fighting a war over there
    No matter who's the winner we can't pay the cost

    'Cause there's a monster on the loose
    It's got our heads into the noose
    And it just sits there watchin'

    America, where are you now
    Don't you care about your sons and daughters
    Don't you know we need you now
    We can't fight alone against the monster

    America, where are you now
    Don't you care about your sons and daughters
    Don't you know we need you now
    We can't fight alone against the monster

    America...America...America...America...


    Steppenwolf
    Monster
    Jerry Edmonton / John Kay © 1970


  3. by HatetheSwamp on July 14, 2023 3:32 am

    Well, I was drunk the day my mom got out of prison
    And I went to pick her up in the rain
    But before I could get to the station in my pickup truck
    She got run over by a d@mned old train
    And I'll hang around as long as you will let me
    And I never minded standing' in the rain, no

    But you don't have to call me darlin', darlin'
    You never even called me
    Well, I wonder why you don't call me
    Why don't you ever call me by my name

    You Never Even Called Me by My Name
    David Allan Coe
    Written by Steve Goodman


  4. by Donna on July 14, 2023 8:47 am

    It's nice to discuss something other than politics for a change, at least for me it is. There's a whole world of topics out there that we could be discussing, but y'all reeeealy love talking politics all the time, which is okay, I mean you like what you like, but for me it gets stale and tiresome.

    When we're on our deathbeds, I don't think we're going to be thinking about Hunter Biden's laptop, although some of you might be thinking about all the countless hours you've spent wasting your life arguing about it.

    I'm familiar with that Steppenwolf song, at least the music. I was unfamiliar with the lyrics. Thanks for posting that, Indy. You too, Hts.


  5. by HatetheSwamp on July 14, 2023 9:01 am

    Yeah, Donna, I've attempted to turn the chat to popular music several times.

    I follow ROLLING STONE on Twitter and bring up points of interest when I find them.


  6. by Donna on July 14, 2023 9:17 am

    I'd love to discuss music more. After friends and family it's my first love. I can't imagine life without music.


  7. by Ponderer on July 14, 2023 9:25 am


    Even though I've heard it countless times over the decades, to this day that song chokes me up every time.



  8. by HatetheSwamp on July 14, 2023 9:27 am

    Donna,

    Are you too young for me to ask for your 3 favorite Motown songs?


  9. by Donna on July 14, 2023 9:48 am

    Me 2, hon. That happened to me yesterday when we were listening to it. A lot of songs do that to me, especially Christmas songs.

    I'm only a few years younger than you, Hts. I'll turn 67 next month, God willing.

    Back in the 60s my 2 older brothers were into Motown, and I remember many nights when I fell asleep in my bed listening to the records they were playing in their bedroom.

    To your question - hmmm, writing in the moment here... So many to choose from, in rock, too, for me, especially rock. Even questions that come up frequently on FB like "Who are your top 5 favorite guitarists?" I akways have trouble answering that type of question because instantly so many songs and musicians I love come to mind.

    For Motown, maybe this is pre-Motown, but I've always loved "I only have eyes for you". I love all the hits by the Supremes and The Temptations equally. Some great songwriting there. If I think of some Motown songs I like particularly well, I'll post 'em.

    How about yours?





  10. by HatetheSwamp on July 14, 2023 10:24 am

    FAVORITE guitarists...not the best/greatest. Big diff. For me, that has to do with the music they played.

    My fave is one on no one else's list: Bernie Leadon...the Eagles' first lead guitarist, replaced by Joe Walsh. I'm a country rock guy. Leadon created all the great guitar parts in those early hits. Tequila Sunrise, Peaceful Easy Feeling, even Lyin Eyes. Great country-rock guitar.

    2. Eric Clapton
    3. George Harrison
    4. Pete Townsend
    5. Chuck Berry?0


  11. by HatetheSwamp on July 14, 2023 10:41 am

    Motown top 3

    1. Ooo Baby Baby...(BY FAR)
    2. Just my Imagination
    3. Respect


  12. by Indy! on July 14, 2023 11:03 am

    Indy's top 3 Supremes songs of the moment...
    1. My World is Empty Without You
    2. I'm Going to Make You Love Me
    3. No Matter What Sign You Are

    Best Motown album (also best album period)
    Marvin Gaye - What's Going On


  13. by Donna on July 15, 2023 8:19 am

    Nice lists.

    My favorite guitarist is Stevie Ray Vaughn, then after him a whole bunch of guitarists I like come to mind.

    There are thousands of incredible players. You can find many of them on YouTube, and most of them are virtual unknowns.









  14. by HatetheSwamp on July 15, 2023 8:46 am

    I recall, Donna, that you are a musician. You even played Gettysburg College. What instrument(s)?


  15. by Donna on July 15, 2023 9:25 am

    I was formally trained on trumpet, which I played on a few songs when disco was a thing and our agent pressured us to do some disco in addition to our rock and pop. None of us were disco fans, but we wanted gigs and everyone we played to loved the wide mix of music we did, everything from KC and the Sunshine Band to Linda Ronstadt to Zepellin. Guitar was my main instrument though. This was from '77 to '79. In '79 we went totally rock, which was my original intent when I formed the band. We broke up in '82.





  16. by Donna on July 15, 2023 9:27 am

    In fact we covered Ronstadt's version of Ooh Baby Baby.


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