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Lyr Add: Think Again (Dick Gaughan)

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John in Brisbane 16 Jul 99 - 03:34 AM
Joe Offer 16 Jul 99 - 04:29 AM
Wolfgang 16 Jul 99 - 04:52 AM
John in Brisbane 26 Jan 00 - 11:22 PM
The Shambles 27 Jan 00 - 03:26 AM
GeorgeH 27 Jan 00 - 11:05 AM
Jon W. 27 Jan 00 - 11:12 AM
The Shambles 27 Jan 00 - 02:42 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 Jan 00 - 04:14 PM
InOBU 27 Jan 00 - 11:33 PM
GeorgeH 28 Jan 00 - 08:02 AM
InOBU 28 Jan 00 - 08:22 AM
GUEST,Terry 28 Jan 00 - 08:22 AM
GUEST,Terry 28 Jan 00 - 08:29 AM
InOBU 28 Jan 00 - 11:26 AM
AndyG 28 Jan 00 - 11:42 AM
The Shambles 28 Jan 00 - 02:26 PM
The Shambles 29 Jan 00 - 07:43 PM
The Shambles 30 Jan 00 - 01:11 PM
Jon W. 31 Jan 00 - 12:11 PM
GeorgeH 31 Jan 00 - 01:21 PM
GUEST,Dick Gaughan 02 Feb 00 - 02:28 PM
GUEST 02 Feb 00 - 02:33 PM
The Shambles 02 Feb 00 - 02:56 PM
Susanne (skw) 05 Feb 00 - 05:37 PM
The Shambles 27 Sep 05 - 04:08 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: THINK AGAIN (Dick Gaughan)
From: John in Brisbane
Date: 16 Jul 99 - 03:34 AM

A powerful song from one of my favourite singer song-writers (from his Official Web site).

Think Again


Words and Music : Dick Gaughan

Do you think that the Russians want war?
These are the parents
Of children who died in the last one
Do you think that it's possible,
Knowing their past
That they'd ever consider
Repeating the last
When 20 million
Were slaughtered by Nazi invasion
They died fighting on our side, you know,
In a fight to defend humankind
Against Nazi terror and hatred

CHORUS

In the name of humanity,
Bitterly torn
In the name of our children
As yet to be born
Before we do that which can
Never be undone I beg of you
Think, think again,
And again and again and again and again

Do you think that the Russians want war?
They're the sons and the daughters
Of parents who died in the last one
Do you think that they'd want
To go through that again
The destruction, the bloodshed,
The suffering and pain?
In the second world war
Out of every 3 dead one was Russian
If we try with all of our power
Can we not find a way
To peacefully settle our difference?

Do you think that the Russians want war?
Will the voice of insanity
Lead you to total destruction?
Will you stumble to death
As though you were blind?
Will you cause the destruction
Of all humankind?
Will you die because you don't
Like their political system?
There will be no survivors you know
No one left to scream in the night
And condemn our stupidity

Written in February 1981 on the railway platform at Friedrichstrasse station which used to be no-man's-land between East and West Berlin.
This was during the period when Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher were heightening the Cold War rhetoric in cynical attempts to increase their domestic popularity.

Inspired by the poem by Yevgeny Yevtushenko, 'Do you think the Russians stand for war?'


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: Joe Offer
Date: 16 Jul 99 - 04:29 AM

Great song, John. Got a tune? (grin)
One minor matter to quibble about - I don't believe Friedrichstraße would be considered to be in "No Man's Land." It was well within East Berlin, and was the point of entry for those who travelled to East Berlin by rail from the West. Can't say I have first-hand experience, though. I was in West Berlin. Our First Sergeant said if we dared to go to the East, he'd pull our security clearances and we'd be off to Vietnam.
I believe Friedrichstraße was the main train station in East Berlin. Bahnhof-Zoo was the station in West Berlin - you may remember that from a U-2 album.
It was a fascinating city when I lived there. I hope to go back next year.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: Wolfgang
Date: 16 Jul 99 - 04:52 AM

Technically speaking, it wasn't No Man's Land, but it sure felt like, especially the platform. It was off limits for all East Berliners except very few armed personel. So you had part of that big railway/subway station bursting with GDR life and the platform where the S-Bahn from West-Berlin arrived, empty as any No Man's Land can be.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: John in Brisbane
Date: 26 Jan 00 - 11:22 PM

I'm am unsure of the protocol here. Dick's official site now has the music notation for this song, and I have created a Midi from the score. I will e-mail to Alison to post at the new MUDI site. Regards, John


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 27 Jan 00 - 03:26 AM

It is sad how events unfold over time and I know the war referred to in this fine song was another World War but the answer to the question in the title is YES, I do. This fact is being clearly demonstrated.

The UN are talking to Russian leadership today but a little late I think?


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GeorgeH
Date: 27 Jan 00 - 11:05 AM

Shambles, the song relates to the cold war - where military build-up in the west was blamed on Soviet agressive tendencies. History and reason show the answer to that question to have been "no".

As for the Russian action in Chetznia (?sp) and UN inactivity - I'm totally in agreement with you. And the popular support, in Russia, for that war is a response to nationalistic propaganda and misinformation in Russia; it has parallells all over the place (including in the high level of popular support in the UK and US for the gulf war); it's a distasteful technique of relatively powerful governments to distract attention from "problems" at home by wholesale slaughter of nationals of less-powerful countries. And the governments can get away with it as long as they avoid significant casualties on their own side. (It remains to be seen whether Russia will get awat with this, domestically. One suspects it may turn into another Afghanistan.)

G.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: Jon W.
Date: 27 Jan 00 - 11:12 AM

I don't think the average Russian wants war any more than the average Brit, American, Frenchman, German, etc. But remember that Stalin killed many times over the number of Russians than Hitler killed Jews/Gypsies/Homosexuals/Eastern Europeans.

Yes, the Russians suffered terribly during World War 2. So did the Germans during WW1. That didn't prevent WW2.

And consider this: the Russian people have NO experience with democracy, NO experience with other than extremely Authoritarian government (first the Czars, then the Leninists/Stalinists "meet the new boss, same as the old boss") and they seem to prefer it (government) that way (look at what Putin is doing in Chechnya and look at his approval rating). If you don't think they can be manipulated by some nefarious leader who may or may not have arisen yet, then you better think again. And frankly, the same goes for Americans and any other general population in the world.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 27 Jan 00 - 02:42 PM

George I take your point but the 'cold' war fear was created by the real fear of another world war, like the one that was referred to in the song or a worse one. I stand by my point, war is war and they do appear to want this one.

The way events overtake songs is interesting too. I am thinking of poor Paul MacCartney and Yesterday. I think that it was just another 'love' song to him, when he wrote it. It meant more to everybody else than it did him. I have no idea how he can bring himself to sing it now.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 Jan 00 - 04:14 PM

The sad thing is that wars can popular at the time, when it looks like your side are big enough and the other side is small enough, and your side is going to win without too much impact on civilian life, including young men coming home in bodybags. Wars like that win elections, and that's largelyn what they are for.

The war against Argentina was like that, so was the Gulf War (which I suppose should be referred to as the Second Gult War - the first one being the war by Iraq against Iran, and the third being the little unpleasantness a few months back which temporarily took the heat of the Lewinsky headlines). So was Vietnam, to start with. So was Afghanistan, to start with.

So were most Colonial Wars, to start with, and often to end with, because most times the big guns and the big guns win in the short run.

Chechnya probably won't be Russia's Afghanistan, there's no big friendly superpower supplying arms, and no safe haven. It probably will be Russia's Ireland, which means it'll be a long long time before it's over, and it'll flare up again and again. And in the end Russia will pull out.

That's unless the Russians follow the American example with defeated nations within their territory, and I can't see that them getting away with that.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: InOBU
Date: 27 Jan 00 - 11:33 PM

In all this concideration of nations present, by their genocidal past, it is often glossed over that every industrial nation killed millions in centralizing the wealth, the US killed some fifty millions of Africans in transit to slavery alone, as well as uncounted Indians. England s ecconomic interests drove the governmental policies that allowed a single crops failure to cause over a million deaths in Ireland in the middle of the nineteenth century. Each act of genocide is unique, and yet, we can not begin to blame Russians and Germans for not coming to terms with genocide in their past, while we do the same. I must admit that as I say this, I had to cross Germany with my wife. I would not let the sun shine on me within the borders of that country, as my mothers Jewish and Gypsy family was murdered not very long ago there. I have forgiven individual Germans, and yet, that nation cannot be said to have begun to come to terms with the past. One needs only to visit the Roma camped on the borders of Germany to see the problem.
I must and do temper this statement by acknowleging the great forward movement in the rights of refugees spearheaded by Germany, as an example of how, when a nation comes to terms with the past, it can result in progress.
Great song, I never realized it was Dick Gaughns, having heard it from Billy Bragg.
All the best
Larry


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GeorgeH
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 08:02 AM

Shambles: yes, you re-state the area of agreement between us, but actually I think you miss my point about the cold war. I don't believe that - except for the Cuba crisis, which showed how precarious the situation was - there was (militarily and politically) a serious concern about the possiblity of a war between "east" and "west". The "threat" of war was just a bogey-man which initially suited the politicians of both sides. In the East it "justified" keeping enormous armies - which allowed control of the populations, and the governments to fulfill their political committment to full employment. In the West it "justified" massive "hidden" subsidies to the increasingly high-tech. arms industries, with spin-off benefits to high-tec industry in general.

Trouble is, what was initially as convenient to the east as to the west locked them into a path of relative technological decline, which increased the divergence in average "standard of living" between East and West and so guaranteed the non sustainability of the Soviet system. And once that became clear the West made damn sure the cold war was maintained up to the point where the East was on its knees, economically, in order to impose its limited economic "vision" on that part of the world.

Or leastways that's how I'm convinced it is!!

G. Cue song: Oyster Band "Six Grey Men".


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: InOBU
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 08:22 AM

Hi GeorgeH:
As you may know, in the US, PBS - non comercial mainstream TV, is in love with British Comidy (Britcoms they call them). Begining with Monty Python, to Good Neighbors, the Fall and Rise of Reginald Perinn, they played it all. A few years back, they stumbled. They got a hold of Alexi Sayles, and ran about six episodes. It was the only Britcom that they did not repete. I believe the nail in the Alexi serries coffin, was the line: Look at what has happened to the great Soviet revolution... seventy years of hardship, blood and sacrifice, to become a tarted up version of the west.
I was in heaven! Alexi Sayles on US Telly, Glastnost had come to the US. Then some exec. actually watched it, and it was yanked (intresting word) as remains the only Britcom not rerun into the ground.
As a red dyper baby during the McCarthy era, the line I loved the most, was Sayles describing his first day of school...
The teacher asked our names... Jane Smythe, John Evans, Henry Jones... it comes to me... Can I be called Student X? No what is your name? I would rather be called Student X! No you must tell me your name. Alright, my name is Alexi Kosigan Joseph Stallen Lennin Sayles. Very good, we will just call you Student X!
Brilliant. It reminded me of telling my teacher that I was not a cub scout because my father would not let me join facist youth organizations. Then, me, all of eight, explaining to the rather vexed principle, to whom I was immediatly sent, what facism meant, before she called my old dad, who came to school to scream at her for a little while...
Larry


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GUEST,Terry
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 08:22 AM

Can any of you fans give me a phonetic or otherwise way of pronouncing "Gaughan" properly? Thanks.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GUEST,Terry
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 08:29 AM

Can any of you fans give me a phonetic or otherwise way of pronouncing "Gaughan" properly? Thanks.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: InOBU
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 11:26 AM

I believe it is pronounced gone - gawn or gaw han, depending on your region, but feel free to correct me.
Larry


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: AndyG
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 11:42 AM

Gaughan pronounced gockan, don't stress either syllable.

AndyG


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 28 Jan 00 - 02:26 PM

Goerge. I think we are pretty much in agreement. Nothing in your last post I would disagree with and I do take your point on the cold war. The only things we do appear to differ on is the answer to the question 'Do You Think That The Russian's Want War?' For when that question is posed NOW, unfortunately, I would have to say the answer is yes.

When the song was written I would have agreed that the answer would have certainly been no. It was the effect of time and events on a good (topical) song that prompted the post. It does not diminish the song in any way for that was the way the author saw it then. It would be interesting to hear his views on the song and the situation now.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Jan 00 - 07:43 PM

The fact that we are comparing apples with oranges is not really helping. In 1981 of course we would (lazily) talk of Russia when we meant The Soviet Union. When we talk of Russia today, we tend to mean Russia and not the many others countries that were then under that Soviet umbrella. The whole current situation is a result of the methods used to keep that Soviet ( but largely Russian) Empire together. It is all a little confusing.

Given the lessons of The Battle of Stalingrad, what the Russian military are currently trying to achieve is difficult for me to understand?

The song also reminds me, to a small extent only, of some of the simplistic attitudes adopted toward the Soviet Union. I am always struck by the reluctance of those, of my father's generation, who believed in the principles of Socialism, to accept that some elements of the Soviet and Chinese models of Socialist government were as bad (in practice) as the Fascist systems they fought against in World War 2. I had little difficulty in agreeing with my father's view of Hitler but whilst myself, readily supporting those same Socialist principles, I was puzzled for some time with the view of Stalin that he tried to convey to me.

The more information I later received about Stalin, the more in horror I became of him and his influence and the more puzzled I became by those who attempted to minimise or apologise for his terrible legacy. I note too how artists like Woody Guthrie were also slow to adjust to the realities of this Communism, as practised, after supporting it most of their lives.

The following is a quote from Dick himself on his updated website, on a link to The Mudcat. "Superb site, in every way. Some members only areas but membership is free"


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 30 Jan 00 - 01:11 PM

Dick Gaughan's website. Thought it might be a good idea to have this here. A look through some of the other songs here may be interesting too


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: Jon W.
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 12:11 PM

Shambles, I think what you were seeing is an unfortunate tendency of groupthink which is to say that if a person is a member of my group, he/she can do no wrong. This attitude seems to be prevalent in almost all political/ethnic/gender/religious/whatever groups.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GeorgeH
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 01:21 PM

Shambles, thanks for the further clarification, and glad to see more agreement between us than I thought.

And yes, I, too, have no sympathy for those whose committment to the socialist IDEAL turned them into apologists for the many inexcusible excesses of Stalinism - just as I have no time at all for "New Labour"'s travesty of "Socialism". Hell, it's even a travesty of Social Democracy.

G.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GUEST,Dick Gaughan
Date: 02 Feb 00 - 02:28 PM

I could, of course, be completely wrong but I have always believed it to be pronounced "Gawchan", with the "ch" sound being approximately the same as the "ch" in "loch".

A bit like the Dutch "g" for those more familiar with Dutch than Gaelic.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Feb 00 - 02:33 PM

> It would be interesting to hear his views on the song and the situation now.

I normally make it a point never to take in part in threads where the topic is me - I would hate to inhibit anyone from expressing their views because they think I might be reading them :) but this is worth making an exception.

Last night in Dublin I was asked to sing this song - I refused for the simple reason that if I were asked this question today I could not in all good conscience answer in the way I would have when I wrote the song.

The song was a Cold War song and, like all topical songs, was always in danger of becoming obsolete as events overtook it. That is the price one pays for commenting on the present rather than the past.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 02 Feb 00 - 02:56 PM

Thank you Dick and Katrina sends you a kiss.


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 05 Feb 00 - 05:37 PM

Dick, thanks for making an exception! In this case, at any rate, I think it's important to know your current view.
Anyway, why should you think you're inhibiting anyone? You can't reach us, can you? :-) (Hope to see your gig at Tonder next week ...) - Susanne


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Subject: RE: LYR NEW: Think Again - Dick Gaughan
From: The Shambles
Date: 27 Sep 05 - 04:08 AM

This old thread has obviously suffered from recent technical problems.

Is there any way that it can be put back in order and any missing posts recovered?
    Click here to display this thread in "printer-friendly" format, with the messages in proper order.
    -Joe Offer-


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