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What's your favorite Civil War songs? - General Civil War Talk - Civil War Talk - Civil War Interactive Discussion Board
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 Posted: Wed Nov 8th, 2006 06:55 pm
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Marie
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How do you tell when you are complete CW music addict?

When you hear a certain Christmas song and start singing "Maryland, My Maryland"

Talk about getting funny looks from anyone within earshot  :)

Regards,

Jana

 

 



 Posted: Wed Nov 8th, 2006 08:43 pm
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Widow
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Hi, ya, Marie, a HOPELESS Civil War music addict knows all the words and can sing them without getting mixed up.

Me, all I know is that when I'm listening to the 97th Regimental's CD vol. 4, and I hear "Weeping, Sad and Lonely," then the next is that secesh Christmas song.  I get ready to sing the 3-word refrain after every verse.

Actually, I hardly understand that type of poetry.  "The patriotic gore that stained the streets of Baltimore."  Should be rated V for violent.  I still don't understand what gory streets have to do with pine trees.

La-la-la, la, la-la-la.  Patty



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 04:22 pm
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Art B.
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Bobby Horton's "Richmond Is A Hard Road To Travel," Tennessee Ernie Ford's two albums put out in 1961 or '62, "TEF Sings Civil War Songs of the North" and "...the South" -- especially The Vacant Chair and Lorena; the whole soundtrack to the Ken Burns' Civil War series. I've got records off of eBay that I haven't even listened to yet.

One I did listen to was by an uninformed band, or at least the singer didn't pay much attention to the lyrics as he sang, "Goober'S Peas" throughout the tune!

Art in Tampa



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 04:34 pm
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Widow
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"Goober'S Peas"


I love it!  No doubt thinking of Gomer's brother, you know, the one with the beanie.  The words make no sense at all in that context.

I read somewhere that the word "goober" is of African origin, "nguba."

Patty



 Posted: Mon Nov 13th, 2006 05:33 pm
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younglobo
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ok you all seem to know alot about civil war tunes . My grandpa was from AR. and used to sing about getting shot, and drinking whiskey to deaden the pain but the only part i remember is part of  the chorus "saw my leg off Saw my leg off short" so was my grandfather just being nutty( which wouldnt suprise me ) or is this a real song?

I like the Ken Burns Civil War Series Soundtrack "Jine the Cavalry "  and "good ol rebel", which always reminds me of the line out of the "long riders"  , " you got real pretty hands you wanna keep em" LOL

Javal ... Barton and Para are awsome have you seen them live ? My fav of thiers is " Shelby's Grey Mule .. Since I now reenact Shelby's 5th MO.

 

 

 



 Posted: Mon Nov 13th, 2006 06:32 pm
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javal1
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Fuller,

Evidently there was such a song - as early as 1879. This from an 1879 newspaper account:

Our city was visited on Wednesday by a trio of very nice-looking young ladies who had apparently just escaped from some village "sem." or district school, and were determined to enjoy their brief vacation to the utmost. In the evening they serenaded some of their friends with fragments of old college airs, which "awakened fond remissness of the ancient memories of bye-gone days" in the breasts of the passersby.


Such classic songs as "If I had a Peanut I'd give you the Shuck," "Gathering up the Smells from the Shore," etc., were gaily caroled forth, but when their sweet voices again united in that grand and solemn refrain, "Saw my Leg off, Short," it was too much, and I sat down on the cold stone pavement, oh, so cold - and- and - wept!


And yes, I saw Barton & Para live - must admit I was transfixed!



 Posted: Mon Nov 13th, 2006 07:06 pm
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Fuller
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About "Saw My Leg Off"

I've read about it in some Conf. regimental histories.  I'm not sure it has ever been formally recorded.  Who knows, maybe it has.  Is your grandpa still alive?  You shoud record him singing it.  I bet once Widow logs on she'll know something.  She is one smart cookie!  Good luck.

Fuller



 Posted: Wed Nov 15th, 2006 05:48 pm
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younglobo
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Javal and Fuller

Thanks for the comeback , so old gramps wasnt just senile . Wish he was still with us passed away in 1985 of lung cancer(which is why i will never smoke) .

Thanks Again

younglobo



 Posted: Wed Nov 15th, 2006 06:36 pm
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Fuller
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I'm sorry about your Grandpa.  It seems we all don't appreciate them till they are gone. 

So I had a bugger of a time trying to find exactly where I saw the lyrics.  It is briefly mentioned here...http://www.achgs.org/bttliberty.htm (sorry if it's a no go,but I have had trouble with links in the past)

Scroll down to "Yankee Horsemen Evacuate"

I will still try and find the one I originally read.  It had more of the lyrics.  You seem to know more than I've found.  I wish I could hear the song.  It sounds disgustingly funny. 

Fuller



 Posted: Wed Nov 15th, 2006 07:29 pm
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younglobo
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cool

thanks Fuller



 Posted: Thu Nov 16th, 2006 01:11 am
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bluebelly93
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Those are all great songs.  Some of my favorites include:

New Tatter Jack,  H*** on the Wabash, First of September, Some Distance from Prussia, Paddy on a Handcar- all by Camp Chase Fife and Drums

Also: I goes to fights mit Sigel, White Cat Black Cat, and Hard Crackers by Potomac Thunder.



 Posted: Sat Nov 25th, 2006 01:19 pm
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CleburneFan
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Wow! I'm not anywhere nearly as well informed as you folks are on Civil War music but I will throw in my humble vote for "Dixie." Why? Not just because they used to play it at University of Florida football games back in the early sixties and the fraternity brothers of Kappa Alpha would stand at attention when it was played, but mainly because it is one of those wonderful songs that no matter how it is played, it sounds spectacular.

It can be played plaintively on a harmonica, slowly and achingly. It can be played as a rousing marching song (as in the old University of Florida days.) It can sound lonely; it can sound proud. It can make you weep. It can make you happy. It can be played as jazz, as a hymn, as a pop song, as a brassy Dixieland-style song, as a beautious orchestral piece with strings, harp and, well, the entire orchestra. Or it can be a simple camp fire song played on acoustic guitar.

I am not originally from Dixie.  I grew up near the Gettysburg battlefield, so my sentiments probably should not be so much tied up in "Dixie" so much as in another great Civil War song, "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" which also often brings me to tears, but even as a kid, I always had a special affinity for "Dixie" and I'm sure I always will.



 Posted: Sat Nov 25th, 2006 07:15 pm
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Widow
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Hi, Cleburn Fan,
I agree with you about the power of "Dixie" to evoke so many different reactions. Dan Emmett, a Yankee, knew what he was doing when he wrote it for one of his minstrel shows before the war. Later, after it was sort of the Confederate national song, he said, "If I'd known they were going to use it for that, I never would have written the damn thing."
Patty



 Posted: Tue Nov 28th, 2006 11:43 pm
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CleburneFan
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Widow Patty, thanks for the additional information. I bet the song's composer would have hated to see the Kappa Alpha farternity brothers standing at attention when the song was played. I do not know if that practice still continues at the University of Florida football games.

Anyway, I have done the song's composer another disservice in that, as I understand it, the song's actual title is "Dixie's Land." Somehow that doesn't have quite the same ring, but that is the original title.



 Posted: Wed Jun 6th, 2007 02:59 am
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wanderson
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"Somebody's Darling" is my favorite song.  The lyrics are heartbreaking.  The version I like is performed by the 1st Brigade Band, a re-enactor brass band out of Wisconsin.  It's on the album, "Dusty Roads and Camps."

 

Into the ward of the clean white-washed halls,
Where the dead slept and the dying lay;
Wounded by bayonets, sabres and balls,
Somebody's darling was borne one day.
Somebody's darling so young and so brave,
Wearing still on his sweet yet pale face
Soon to be hid in the dust of the grave,
The lingering light of his boyhood's grace.

Somebody's darling, somebody's pride,
Who'll tell his Mother where her boy died?

Matted and damp are his tresses of gold,
Kissing the snow of that fair young brow;
Pale are the lips of most delicate mould,
Somebody's darling is dying now.
Back from his beautiful purple-veined brow,
Brush off the wandering waves of gold;
Cross his white hands on his broad bosom now,
Somebody's darling is still and cold.

Give him a kiss, but for somebody's sake,
Murmur a prayer for him, soft and low,
One little curl from his golden mates take,
Somebody's they were once, you know,
Somebody's warm hand has oft rested there,
Was it a Mother's so soft and white?
Or have the lips of a sister, so fair,
Ever been bathed in their waves of light?

Somebody's watching and waiting for him,
Yearning to hold him again to her breast;
Yet there he lies with his blue eyes so dim,
And purple, child-like lips half apart.
Tenderly bury the fair, unknown dead,
Pausing to drop on this grave a tear;
Carve on the wooden slab over his head,
"Somebody's darling is slumbering here."



 Posted: Wed Jun 6th, 2007 06:06 pm
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Art B.
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Hey there, Wanderson...

If "Somebody's Darling" and "The Vacant Chair" don't bring tears to a listener's eyes, they're simply not human. A couple of real maudlin, heart-rending tunes. I see in your post a verse that I've not heard before.

Tennessee Ernie Ford's "The Vacant Chair," sung in his way-low tenor, is just 100% anguish.

One tune seems to be about an "unknown" and the other is about "noble Willie," IIRC based on a real soldier.

Art "Eyes Need Wiping" B.



 Posted: Wed Jun 6th, 2007 08:21 pm
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GenHood
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Whew, it's tough not to make a long, rambling list!  The Tennesse Ernie Ford previously mentioned is a favorite, along with "The Civil War: It's Music and it's Sounds" by Frederick Fennell and the Eastman Wind Ensemble.  It's a great history lesson in the music, bugle calls, drum rolls, rifles and artillery, and it gives a nice little summary of the major battles.

Waylon Jennings "An Old Unreconstructed" is a great song.  Whenever I hear Elvis sing "Love Me Tender" the words to "Aura Lee" run through my head.

Bobby Horton, however, is my favorite.  Love listening to the "Vicksburg" CD on a quiet Sunday morning.  "Root Hog or Die" on CSA vol 3 is a fave, as is"Richmond is a Hard Road to Travel" on vol 4.  "Yellow Rose of Texas" of course, (the Gallant Hood of Texas), "Rose of Alabama" I could probably really ramble here.  

Of course, "Dixie" "Battle Hymn of the Republic" "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" "Bonnie Blue Flag" and Garryowen" are standards I love.  Also have to mention the sdtk to "Gettysburg" which was a Fathers Day gift from my daughter several years ago.  Really enjoy that one too!


 



 Posted: Wed Jun 6th, 2007 08:21 pm
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GenHood
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Oops, must have hit send twice.


 

Last edited on Wed Jun 6th, 2007 08:24 pm by GenHood



 Posted: Sat Jun 9th, 2007 04:24 am
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Fuller
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younglobo,

This thread got a little life in it again and so I though I might add something I found a bit ago.  To your question about "Saw my leg off"...(Gramps wasn't crazy after all):)

From histories of the 13th Mass.,

Various were the devices adopted by the boys to relieve the monotony of weary marches. On these occasions, as conversation was allowed, stories were told, gossip repeated, discussions carried on, and criticisms made on the acts of public men, as well as on the merits of our commanders. An occasional silence would be broken by the starting of a familiar song, and very soon the whole regiment would join in the singing. Sometimes it would be a whistling chorus, when all would be whistling. Toward the end of a day, however, so tired we were all, that it was difficult to muster courage for these diversions, then our only reliance for music would be the band. When a temporary halt was granted, it was curious to see how quickly the boys would dump themselves over on their backs at the side of the road as soon as the word was given, looking like so many dead men. There was one thing we were thankful to the colonel for, and that was his freedom from nonsense on such occasions, No "right--facing, no "right--dressing, no "stacking arms," to waste valuable minutes, but "get all the rest you can, boys," and when the order was given to "forward," each man took his place in line without confusion or delay....
It would often occur, when we were tired and dusty from a long days march, "Old Festive" would ride by, when suddenly you would hear sung:

"Saw my leg off,
 Saw my leg off,
   Saw my leg off--
SHORT! ! !"


 


 



 Posted: Sat Jun 9th, 2007 05:00 am
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susansweet
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Favorite songs, Bonny Blue Flag,  Yellow Rose of Texas , I am behind on buying Civil War Cds I have only six.  I need more.  Going to look for some of those mentioned . 

There is a Richie Havens song called Give Us a Flag I really like too.  Really too many to list . 

Modern song I love is The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down. 



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