Language   

Liza Jane

Almanac Singers
Language: English


Related Songs

I'm on My Way
(Almanac Singers)
The Dodger Song
(Almanac Singers)
Young Man From Alcalà
(Pete Seeger)


Un'altra canzone dall'album "Songs for John Doe" (vedi Ballad Of October 16th). Chiaramente isolazionisti, i contenuti dell'album vennero in seguito ritrattati da Seeger e compagni.

"Liza Jane", another hoedown with alternating vocals by Seeger, White and Lampell, opens with a traditional verse but quickly moves into its isolationist message. One source credits Woody Guthrie as composer of this parody; Seeger remembers writing "Liza Jane," "Plow Under" and "Billy Boy" with Lee Hays on Helen Simon's apartment floor in early February 1941.
(Lampell remembers writing it with Seeger....Ronald D. Cohen & Dave Samuelson, liner notes for "Songs for Political Action," Bear Family Records BCD 15720 JL, 1996, p. 77.)

(from The unofficial DOC & MERLE WATSON and semi-official WOODY GUTHRIE and ALMANAC SINGERS Site)

The Almanac Singers.
The Almanac Singers.


jdoeTHE SONGS FOR JOHN DOE
Questa canzone degli Almanac Singers di Pete Seeger, scritta in un momento in cui gli Stati Uniti erano ancora neutrali nella Seconda Guerra Mondiale, conteneva una critica feroce contro il presidente Roosevelt e la sua decisione di iniziare il riarmo del paese.
Con un tempismo estremamente sfortunato l'album venne pubblicato proprio poche settimane prima che Hitler invadesse l'Unione Sovietica.
A seguito dei fatti del maggio 1941, però, l'album fu ritirato in tutta fretta ed il gruppo pubblicò un nuovo disco di canzoni anti-hitleriane tra le quali spicca Dear Mr. President, un talking blues che si rivolge direttamene a Roosvelt dicendo "Lo so che non siamo sempre stati d'accordo in passato, ma la prima cosa da fare è battere Hitler. Il resto può aspettare"

The song dates from the period in which the United States was strictly neutral but had begun re-armament and the first peace-time US draft (Act passed Saturday, 9/14/40). On October 16, 1940 it was announced that 16,500,000 men had registered.

This song and its album, "SONGS FOR JOHN DOE" proved something of an embarrassment to the Almanacs. Just a few weeks after it was released in May 1941, Hitler ordered the invasion of the USSR. The album was shelved and they soon came out with anti-Hitler songs.
( Notes based on those of Guy Logsdon & Jeff Place from the Folkways album "That's Why We're Marching"
Copyright Abby Sale, 1997. Used by permission. All publication rights are retained by author, but limited broadcast license will probably be granted on request.)

Set to the tune of 'Jesse James,' 'The Ballad of October 16th' was one of Lampell's earliest works; the title of this vitriolic anti-Roosevelt song refers to the day in 1940 when Congress passed the peacetime draft law. "No other peace song of the pact era proved more popular in the Communist movement," Richard Reuss later wrote. Critics from both the right and the left would later use 'The Ballad of October 16th' to embarass the Almanacs after the left turned to a pro-Roosevelt stance.
( Ronald D. Cohen & Dave Samuelson, liner notes for "Songs for Political Action," Bear Family Records BCD 15720 JL, 1996, p. 77.)

from This page

Dear Mr. President is direct antithesis of the songs of this album where Seeger says directly to Roosvelt: "We haven't always agreed in the past, I know / But that ain't at all important now / What is important is what we got to do / We got to lick Mr. Hitler, and until we do / Other things can wait."
I got a girl in Arkansas, little Liza Jane,
She sleeps in her kitchen with her feet in the hall, little Liza Jane.

Oh! Won't you... Oh! Eliza, little Liza Jane,
Oh! Won't you... Oh! Eliza, little Liza Jane.

I'm gonna marry her if I can...
She loves me 'cause I'm a union man...

Heard a speech by the President...
Wants to put me in a regiment...

I went to the draft and stood in line...
Now I'm a number 609...

Said in Congress yesterday...
"Take the right to strike away..."

They say that labor camps are fine...
To make the young folk toe the line...

I can't marry you today...
I can't afford it on my pay...

Cut the pay and raise the rents...
It's all for national defense...

Better make the government change its plan...
I aim to be a married man...

Dry your tears, get out your knittin'...
I don't aim to be no bundle for Britain...

2005/8/22 - 23:32



Main Page

Please report any error in lyrics or commentaries to antiwarsongs@gmail.com

Note for non-Italian users: Sorry, though the interface of this website is translated into English, most commentaries and biographies are in Italian and/or in other languages like French, German, Spanish, Russian etc.




hosted by inventati.org