Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Cruel War is Raging

I first heard this song by Peter Paul and Mary when I was in high school, I wasn’t even sure who recorded it, in 1968 this struck a responsive note. I thought it was missing a verse.

Like many old folk songs there are many versions.The story sounded like a Civil War song, however The Contemplator at Contemplations from the Marianas Trench has two different American versions dating from the Revolutionary War

I made my decision,
I will join up too,
Oh Johnny, dear Johnny,
I'll soon be with you.


Oh why did the army
Take you from my side,
To go into battle,
Away from your bride.

Also Taylor's Traditional Tunebook has the Peter Paul and Mary version listed as English (no date) but adds an additional verse:

They marched into battle, she never left his side
'Til a bullet shell struck her and love was denied
A bullet shell struck her, tears came to Johnny's eyes
As he knelt down beside her, she silently died.

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