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Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)

saulgoldie 09 Apr 11 - 08:55 AM
Charley Noble 09 Apr 11 - 11:40 AM
Cool Beans 09 Apr 11 - 11:55 AM
Desert Dancer 09 Apr 11 - 04:13 PM
Desert Dancer 10 Apr 11 - 02:17 PM
Desert Dancer 11 Apr 11 - 01:57 PM
saulgoldie 11 Apr 11 - 07:58 PM
GUEST,rasta 24 Jun 11 - 06:23 AM
GUEST,999 24 Jun 11 - 02:00 PM
GUEST,Jim Dixon at the Webster WI library 25 Jun 11 - 12:05 PM
GUEST,Bob Lusk 27 Jun 11 - 09:54 AM
dick greenhaus 27 Jun 11 - 03:33 PM
Kenny B (inactive) 10 Oct 11 - 06:54 PM
GUEST 11 Oct 11 - 05:07 PM
GUEST,DaveM 13 Oct 11 - 07:22 PM
Charley Noble 13 Oct 11 - 08:11 PM
GUEST,DaveM 13 Oct 11 - 08:51 PM
GUEST,DaveM 13 Oct 11 - 09:26 PM
GUEST,DaveM 13 Oct 11 - 10:13 PM
EBarnacle 13 Oct 11 - 10:34 PM
Desert Dancer 13 Oct 11 - 10:50 PM
GUEST,from Tokyo 14 Oct 11 - 04:15 AM
GUEST,DaveM 14 Oct 11 - 06:16 PM
GUEST 14 Oct 11 - 06:34 PM
Desert Dancer 15 Oct 11 - 01:22 AM
Kenny B (inactive) 17 Oct 11 - 03:27 PM
Desert Dancer 17 Oct 11 - 03:36 PM
Jim Dixon 19 Oct 11 - 12:18 PM
Jim Dixon 19 Oct 11 - 12:30 PM
Cool Beans 19 Oct 11 - 05:05 PM
GUEST,PETE PETERSON 20 Oct 11 - 01:16 AM
clueless don 25 Oct 11 - 02:21 PM
Mark Ross 25 Oct 11 - 06:26 PM
dick.hamlet 26 Oct 11 - 12:53 PM
GUEST,DocDTM 27 Oct 11 - 07:38 PM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 11 - 03:56 AM
Kenny B (inactive) 09 Nov 11 - 11:30 AM
GUEST,DocDTM 10 Jan 12 - 06:44 PM
GUEST,scuttlebob 03 Apr 13 - 02:37 PM
GUEST,Blind Lemming Chiffon 03 May 13 - 06:50 PM
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Subject: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: saulgoldie
Date: 09 Apr 11 - 08:55 AM

Just heard on NPR. For your edification.


http://www.npr.org/2011/04/09/135240040/how-the-beatnik-riot-helped-kick-off-the-60s


Saul


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: Charley Noble
Date: 09 Apr 11 - 11:40 AM

Interesting story, Saul.

I only got to listen in on what went on there at Washington Square on our annual Easter vacation visit to our grandparents who were resident in Brooklyn. But it all looked like fun.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: Cool Beans
Date: 09 Apr 11 - 11:55 AM

Pete Seeger commemorated this incident in the song "Washington Square" on his Columbia LP "Story Songs." I don't know if he wrote the song.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 09 Apr 11 - 04:13 PM

(I didn't spot this thread before I started my own -- here's what I posted; I'll get the other deleted.)

How The Beatnik Riot Helped Kick Off The '60s, story on NPR Weekend Edition

"Sunday", the 17-minute documentary filmed at the time by Dan Drasin (there's a link to the NPR story on this page, as well) [Note: for some reason, the video for this disappears when I try to play it, though the audio is there. I had to right-click on where it would be and "save as Quicktime video", then play from the file.]

"On April 9, 1961, several hundred musicians and their friends gathered in New York's Washington Square Park to sing folk songs and hang out, just like they did most Sundays. But on this day, the New York Police Department came to kick them out." A permit was required, and had been given for the past 17 years, but for some reason that week it had been denied.
...
"In 1961, Izzy Young was running the Folklore Center on MacDougal Street, a few blocks away from the park. At the time, it was the heart of the Greenwich Village folk scene — a hangout for amateurs and professionals, including Bob Dylan and Dave Van Ronk.

"Young was the one who applied for the Washington Square Park permit in the first place, and when it was rejected he helped organize the protest."
...
"Today, Young lives in Sweden. He says the Beatnik Riot is pretty much forgotten, except for Drasin's film and Young's collection of photographs and newspapers clippings.

"But Drasin disagrees. He says the events of April 9, 1961, did have a lasting significance.

"'It was a chaotic day, without a whole lot of rhyme and reason,' he says. 'But it was certainly representative of the era to come, when the people confronted established authority and started holding them accountable. It would've been unthinkable in the 1950s. But this was the beginning of the 1960s.'"

Definitely persist and watch the film. It's a fascinating little window into a transition period in history.

~ Becky in Long Beach
whose own 50th anniversary is imminent (so I wasn't there, I showed up on the other side of the Hudson about 3 weeks later.)


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 10 Apr 11 - 02:17 PM

Bump.

I really, really, recommend watching the short documentary, "Sunday", linked above (and on the NPR story page).

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 11 Apr 11 - 01:57 PM

One last bump...

Take just a little time to watch it and get on the ground in Washington Square with the kids carrying their banjos and guitars and autoharps and getting together to speak (sing!) out for their right to sing folk songs. You won't regret it.

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Washington Square Incident
From: saulgoldie
Date: 11 Apr 11 - 07:58 PM

Thanks, Becky. I'll bump it, too.

Saul


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Subject: Lyr Req: morrisible
From: GUEST,rasta
Date: 24 Jun 11 - 06:23 AM

hey gang how ya be ,im lookin for the song title and lyrics to a tune pete seeger did way back maybe 62 on an album called story song ,a bakers dozen ,on columbia /// these guitar pickers are sadly misled ,our countrys anthem from this motly crew /// strike down the guitarist of morrisable ,... anyone remember


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: morrisible
From: GUEST,999
Date: 24 Jun 11 - 02:00 PM

PETE SEEGER,        Story Songs ,        Columbia CL1668, 1961.        ex-/ex        10
Orig Six-Eyes label mono. "A Baker's Dozen of American Ballads About 3 Saints, 4 Sinners, And 6 Other People" performed live. Light surface. Small wobc.        


All I could find.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: morrisible
From: GUEST,Jim Dixon at the Webster WI library
Date: 25 Jun 11 - 12:05 PM

Here's the track list from "Story Songs" as given at Allmusic.com:
   TITLE             COMPOSER
1 Way Out There    Nolan 4:09
2 The Half-Hitch    traditional 5:09
3 Hobo's Lullaby    Reeves 4:11
4 Washington Square Maars 1:33
5 Aimee McPherson   Seeger 2:27
6 Buffalo Skinner   Guthrie 3:15
7 The Foolish Frog Seeger 7:00
8 Monogahela Sal    Schmertz 4:03
9 John Henry       Traditional 4:10
10 Fayette County   Cunningham 3:06
11 Pretty Boy Floyd Guthrie 2:32
However, this album has only 11 tracks, so I don't see how it could properly be called "a baker's dozen"—but WorldCat.org confirms that is the correct title.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: morrisible
From: GUEST,Bob Lusk
Date: 27 Jun 11 - 09:54 AM

It's Washington Square.

Strike for the right, strike for Morris so bold
Loudly the notes from the sparrows are sounding,
squawks of the pigeons are filling the air
over the grass a policeman comes bounding
to silence the singers in Washington square.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: morrisible
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 27 Jun 11 - 03:33 PM

From the same era, re the DEA getting in costume:
"They msde their raids with spades in shades, Ho-roo, ho-roo.


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Subject: Lyr Req: WashintonSquare
From: Kenny B (inactive)
Date: 10 Oct 11 - 06:54 PM

Im updating my personal song book and im sure this transcrpit is mondegrenious
I transcribed many many years ago from a reel to reel tape of Pete Seeger
Can anyone make any corrections to the lyrics S'il vous plait

WASHINGTON SQUARE


Loudly the notes of the sparrows are sounding,
Squawks of the pigeons are filling the air,
Over the grass a policeman comes bounding,
To silence the singing in Washington Square,
Neubold Morris sir, Hartford commissioner,
Says stop the music and that they will do,
Let not a note be heard from neither man nor bird,
Strike down guitarists o Morris men in blue            

Glimmers of sunlight from banjos are glancing
There by the fountain a few singers meet
Soon New Yorks finest with night sticks a' dancing
"Don't raise your voices" says the cop on the beat
"All through the atmosphere what is that song we hear
Our country's anthem from this motley crew,
Answer this prayer to god call out the riot squad
And what are they singing to O'Donnel Aboo"

These guitar pickers are sadly misleaded
Gather them up boys and take them to jail
There still a fire hose in Kingston is needed
The notions of City Hall are bound to prevail
Onward the Morris men fight ye oh fight again
The just pay taxes to be spent by you
Down with the surging mass up with the holy grass
Strike for the war cry of "O'Donnel Aboo"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: WashintonSquare
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Oct 11 - 05:07 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DaveM
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 07:22 PM

I can recall a few of the lyrics. First verse was something like:

Newbold (?) Morrison (?), our park commissioner
Says "stop the music", and that they will do
Let not a note be heard, from neither man nor bird
Strike down guitarists, oh Morris so bold (?)

Second verse has the line about "our country's anthem from this motley crew" but I can't remember the rest. Seems to me there was a line about nightsticks and "there's always tear gas" if people refused to leave.

Last verse concludes with:

"up with the surging mass
down with the holy grass
fight for the park's rights (?)
or Morris so bold"

No idea how accurate any of this is. It's drawn from long-ago memory. I actually have the album (on vinyl) but where it's gotten to....I have no idea.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Charley Noble
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 08:11 PM

Intriguing.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DaveM
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 08:51 PM

Correction on that. The last verse concludes:

"down with the surging mass
up with the holy grass
fight for the park's rights
Ol' Morris on the move (or "Morris so bold")

There's also a "glimmers of sunlights from banjos are glancing" somewhere--I think in the "our country's anthem" verse, and I seem to recall "there's always tear gas if they step out of line".

Wish I could find that album....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DaveM
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 09:26 PM

Now I'm never going to get that song out of my head!

"These guitar pickers are sadly misleaded
Take them in hand (?) boys and take them to jail
There's always fire hose in case it is needed (that was the line I thought referred to tear gas).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DaveM
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 10:13 PM

The guitar pickers are sadly misleaded
Gather them up, boys, and take them to jail
There's always a fire hose in case it is need
The notions of City Hall are bound to prevail

There are then four more lines which lead into the "down with the surging mass/up with the holy grass" part.

There's also a line ""Don't raise your voices!" says the cop on the beat".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: EBarnacle
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 10:34 PM

More! More!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 13 Oct 11 - 10:50 PM

Here's an MP3 at Amazon.com. It doesn't have the full song, but it does have some that's not listed here yet:

Glimmers of sunlight from banjos are glancing;
there by the fountain a few singers meet.
See New York's finest with night sticks advancing;
"Don't raise your voices," says the cop on the beat.

All through the atmosphere, what is that song we hear?
Our country's anthem from this motley crew.
Answer this prayer to God, call out the riot squad
...


This obviously refers to the "Beatnik Riot" in Washington Square in 1961. There's a wonderful short documentary about it that NPR put online, along with their story. Here's the April Mudcat thread (above) on it, which has a link.

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,from Tokyo
Date: 14 Oct 11 - 04:15 AM

thanks

kiyohide


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DaveM
Date: 14 Oct 11 - 06:16 PM

Answer this prayer to God, call out the riot squad
Strike down guitarists, old Morris'll move (that's what it sounds like at least)

Believe there's an instrumental bridge here, then:

These guitar pickers are sadly misleaded
Gather them up boys and take them to jail
There's still a fire hose in case it is needed
The notions of City Hall are bound to prevail.
(then two lines I simply can't remember)
Down with the surging mass, up with the holy grass
Fight for the park's rights, ol' Morris on the move!

I have been thinking about this song since I first heard about the "Occupy Wall Street" folks. Hoped someone might have the lyrics. Now it's becoming a quest!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Oct 11 - 06:34 PM

Okay--I believe the final stanza is:

On with old Morris then, fight the old fight again
They just pay taxes to be spent by you
Down with the surging mass, up with the holy grass
Fight for the park's right, ol' Morris on the move!

With that I think we have more or less the complete lyric, though I don't know if I've got some of the words right.

The tune is a fairly standard G-C-D thing with an A thrown in here and there--if you've heard it, you can probably play it, though there's something about Pete's clawhammer banjo that makes even the simplest fingering shine.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 15 Oct 11 - 01:22 AM

Guest,DaveM, can you string it together in order?

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: Lyr Add: WASHINGTON SQUARE (from Pete Seeger)
From: Kenny B (inactive)
Date: 17 Oct 11 - 03:27 PM

From the personal copy of the LP "Pete Seeger Story Songs"
(Philips B 47130L BBL7507)
11 Tracks as per Jim Dixon above
"A Bakers dozen of American Ballads About 3 Saints 4 Sinners and 6 Other people" Must be tongue in cheek in the UK a bakers dozen is 13

Washington Square    (Tune O'Donnell Aboo)

Loudly the notes of the sparrows are sounding,
Squawks of the pigeons are filling the air,
Over the grass a policeman comes bounding,
To silence the singing in Washington Square,
Neubold Morris sir, Hartford commissioner,
Says stop the music and that they will do,
Let not a note be heard from neither man nor bird,
Strike down guitarists ol Morris men on the move

Glimmers of sunlight from banjos are glancing
There by the fountain a few singers meet
Soon New York's finest with night sticks advancing
"Don't raise your voices" says the cop on the beat
"All through the atmosphere what is that song we hear
Our country's anthem from this motley crew,
Answer this prayer to god call out the riot squad
Fight for the parks rights ol Morris on the move

These guitar pickers are sadly misleaded
Gather them up boys and take them to jail
There still a fire hose in Kingston is needed
The notions of City Hall are bound to prevail
Onward the Morris men fight ye oh fight again
They just pay taxes to be spent by you
Down with the surging mass up with the holy grass
Fight for the parks rights ol Morris on the move


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 17 Oct 11 - 03:36 PM

Thanks, Kenny B!

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: WashintonSquare
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 19 Oct 11 - 12:18 PM

The song WASHINGTON SQUARE that Pete Seeger recorded was written by Job Maarse. It's on Seeger's album "Story Songs" (1961) which seems to be out of print.

There are lots of other songs with the same title.

I hope this information helps somebody find it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger) 2
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 19 Oct 11 - 12:30 PM

Turns out there are 2 threads about this song, and Kenny B also posted his lyrics in the other one, here.

We'd much prefer that you refresh an old thread rather than start a new one on the same topic.
    Threads combined. -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Cool Beans
Date: 19 Oct 11 - 05:05 PM

Newbold Morris, sir, our parks commissioner....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,PETE PETERSON
Date: 20 Oct 11 - 01:16 AM

Since the tune Ernie Marrs used was O'Donnell Aboo, suspect the line at end of each verse is therefore O'Morris, a boo. (OGoogle says the song was written in 1843.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: clueless don
Date: 25 Oct 11 - 02:21 PM

I agree with Cool Beans, though I always heard it as "our park commissioner.

I will confess that I thought the gentleman's name was "Neubold Morriser", though "Neubold Morris, sir" sounds more likely.

I thought the first verse ended "Oh Morris abu", not "Oh Morris, so bold" or other variations. After all, it is a parody of O'Donnell abu.

Don


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Mark Ross
Date: 25 Oct 11 - 06:26 PM

The Parks Commisioner of NYC at the time was NEWBOLD Morris.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: dick.hamlet
Date: 26 Oct 11 - 12:53 PM

I have the Columbia reissue of "Story Songs," which I think is just
a different label/albumcover. The 13 are the people, not the tracks,
i.e., "Aimee McPherson" is also about Radio Ray (Armastad sp?). I
used to think the last lines ended with "oh Morris the bold", but
the tune traced to the Irish Abu/ makes it sound more like
"oh Morris aboo". Kenny B. has mostly the same lyrics I hear, except:

v1: Newbold Morris, sir, our Park Commissioner,

v2: Last line is same as v1, not v3.

v3: There's still the fire hose in case it is needed
Onward with Morris, then, fight the good fight again
Fight for the park site oh Morris aboo!


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Subject: Lyr Add: WASHINGTON SQUARE (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DocDTM
Date: 27 Oct 11 - 07:38 PM

So good to know that I'm not the only one who's been driven slightly crazy by inability to track down these lyrics in full since the 1960s! I remembered them through "Glimmers of sunlight from banjos are glancing," then went blank. Thanks so much! I've merged the suggestions/corrections/gap fillers in previous posts, and here(below) is the so-far final version, with a few questionable words/phrases in [brackets]...definitive words welcome! (We're all Mondegreeners, aren't we?). Now...let's pick up those guitars! [Thank you, Kenny B., for the bulk of the words, Dave M. and Desert Dancer for more plus history, and all others for your contributions to this 50 yr. old source of puzzlement! Yes, I did travel from L.I. to Washington Square with my guitar at least once...and went to college with Newbold Morris's daughter.]

Washington Square    (Tune: O'Donnell Aboo)
[written by Job Maarse; performed by Pete Seeger on 1961 LP "Pete Seeger Story Songs"--
Philips B 47130L BBL 7507)]

Loudly the notes of the sparrows are sounding,
Squawks of the pigeons are filling the air,
Over the grass a policeman comes bounding,
To silence the singing in Washington Square.

Newbold Morris, sir, our Park Commissioner,
Says stop the music and that they will do.
Let not a note be heard from neither man nor bird,
Strike down guitarists ol'(or O) Morris, aboo!

Glimmers of sunlight from banjos are glancing.
There by the fountain a few singers meet.
See [or Soon] New York's finest with night sticks advancing
"Don't raise your voices" says the cop on the beat.

"All through the atmosphere what is that song we hear
Our country's anthem from this motley crew,
Answer this prayer to god, call out the riot squad
Fight for the park's rights ol' Morris, aboo!

These guitar pickers are sadly misleaded.
Gather them up boys and take them to jail.
There still a fire hose in case it is needed.
The notions of City Hall are bound to prevail.

Onward old Morris then [or Onward the Morris men],
Fight the old fight again.
They just pay taxes to be spent by you.
Down with the surging mass up with the holy grass!
Fight for the park's rights ol' Morris, aboo!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 11 - 03:56 AM

"Neubold Morriser"
I remembered "Neubold Forrester" - Oh those blue misremembered days!
Among the prizes of our collection are a 78rpm record and a book by Howard Fast on the Peekskill riots where Pete was present, along with a leaflet "Free Pete Seeger" issued at the time of his HUAC trial.
Brave, dedicated man.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: Kenny B (inactive)
Date: 09 Nov 11 - 11:30 AM

Thanks DocDTM

A consensus on mudcat is sometimes difficult to obtain.

Myself ... im a mondegreener of repute and am happy to get a song assembled where the sounds are difficult , my first attempt at the lyrics of " A Fairytale of New York" were totally laughable once I got the real words


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,DocDTM
Date: 10 Jan 12 - 06:44 PM

Good news! When I was visiting family in NY in early Dec., I told my web-searching nephew about our decades-long search for these lyrics. He found that a Pete Seeger MP3 album would be relased on Dec. 25 containing "Washington Square!" He'd found it on Amazon by typing in "Pete Seeger Washington Square." The MP3 album is "Pete Seeger Sings John Henry & Other Folk Favorites," and is $5.99...the single "Washington Square" song $0.89. You can sample the song -- listen to part of it -- for free. I bought just the song a couple of days ago (and was billed $1.89). I'm not sure where it's hiding in my computer, Lady LoTech (no relation to JLo) that I am...but I've got it. Thought I'd share the info--and if anyone can help me out on how to find the evasive download & get it into my iPod, I'd be most grateful!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,scuttlebob
Date: 03 Apr 13 - 02:37 PM

I always interpreted that last line as; "So Morris'll approve!"   ? Bob Zentz


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Washington Square (from Pete Seeger)
From: GUEST,Blind Lemming Chiffon
Date: 03 May 13 - 06:50 PM

I always thought the line went, "Strike down guitarists, for Morris taboo."

I'll have to listen to it again. I learned it years ago, without actually intending to.


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