Wednesday, September 26, 2007

War:British Music:

British soldiers were paid significantly less than American troops, faced harder conditions at home, and were generally deployed for longer periods of time, preventing them from being exposed to radio products to the same level as the United States Armed Forces. So whereas US forces were exposed to mass media often large jazz productions British units often had to sing their own songs that were often disrespectful and memorable rhymes. Songs were generally based upon pre-existing well known songs.Popular soldier songs included:No More Soldiering for Me -sung to "What a Friend we have in Jesus"Kiss me Goodnight, Sergeant MajorSod 'Em All -sung to "Bless 'Em All"Deutscher, Deutscher -sung to "German National Anthem"Hitler has Only Got One Ball -sung to "Colonel Bogey"You Take the Gun -sung to "Loch Lomond"Desert BluesD-Day Dodgers -sung to "Lili Marlene" (Written for forces serving in Italy during D-Day)The British Soldier's Discharge SongBritain did have a mass media which played popular music, much enjoyed by the Germans stationed in France and the Low Countries or flying over Britain. The most famous single performer was Vera Lynn who became known as "the forces' sweetheart".Popular concert songs in Britain during the war included:Run rabbit run - Flannegan & Allen Words by Noel Gay & Ralph Butler. Music by Noel GayThere'll Always Be An EnglandWe'll Meet Again 1939 Words and Music by Ross Parker and Hughie CharlesThis is perhaps the most famous war time song with the lines:We'll meet againDon't know whereDon't know whenBut I know we'll meet again some sunny dayLynn's recording was memorably played during an apocalyptic scene in Dr. Strangelove; the Byrds covered it (to similarly ironic effect) on their first album.White Cliffs of Dover 1942 Words by Nat Burton and Music by Walter KentWhen the Lights Go On Again All Over the World Written by Eddie Seller, Sol Marcus, and Bennie Benjamin

No comments: