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Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers

DigiTrad:
LILI MARLEEN
LILI MARLENE (informal)
LILLI MARLENE (English)
THE D-DAY DODGERS


Related threads:
Aug 18th, 1941: Lili Marleen (110)
Lili Marlene by As sung by June tabor (11)
Chords Req: D-Day Dodgers / Lili Marlene (9)
(origins) Origins: Lili Marleen (32)
happy? - Aug 18 (Vor der Kaserne) (10)
Lyr Req: We Are the D-Day Dodgers (39)
Lyr Req: Lilli Marlene in Irish (7)
Chords Req: Lili Marlene in German and English (23)
Lyr Req: Wedding of Lili Marlene (19)
Another Lili Marlene (5)
Lyr Add: Lili Marlene (an extra clean verse) (4)
D-Day Dodgers.Lili Marlene (5)


GUEST 04 Feb 01 - 08:02 AM
Jeri 04 Feb 01 - 08:36 AM
GUEST,Rana 04 Feb 01 - 08:41 AM
bill\sables 04 Feb 01 - 09:17 AM
Clifton53 04 Feb 01 - 11:27 AM
GUEST 04 Feb 01 - 12:53 PM
Sarah2 04 Feb 01 - 02:56 PM
Irish sergeant 04 Feb 01 - 02:59 PM
Snuffy 04 Feb 01 - 06:03 PM
GUEST,colwyn dane 04 Feb 01 - 07:27 PM
John Routledge 04 Feb 01 - 07:49 PM
RoyH (Burl) 05 Feb 01 - 11:16 AM
Snuffy 05 Feb 01 - 07:22 PM
RoyH (Burl) 05 Feb 01 - 08:17 PM
GUEST,colwyn dane 05 Feb 01 - 09:09 PM
GUEST,trish 07 Jun 03 - 11:45 AM
The Walrus 07 Jun 03 - 01:41 PM
artbrooks 07 Jun 03 - 01:54 PM
GUEST,Bill 07 Jun 03 - 07:00 PM
Gareth 07 Jun 03 - 07:52 PM
GUEST,Q 07 Jun 03 - 09:14 PM
Keith A of Hertford 08 Jun 03 - 04:41 AM
The Walrus 08 Jun 03 - 08:26 AM
GUEST,Q 08 Jun 03 - 01:45 PM
The Walrus 08 Jun 03 - 08:24 PM
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Subject: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 08:02 AM

Hi

Anyone got the words to this song. I think Ian Campbell did it way back.

Es


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Jeri
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 08:36 AM

It's in the Digital Tradition, found with a search (in that blue box, upper right) for "dodgers." Click here for D-Day Dodgers.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,Rana
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 08:41 AM

Hi,

The song's in the digitrad data base From there is this info:

(Words: Anonymous; compiled and edited by Hamish Henderson. Tune: Lili Marlene. Recorded, Ewan MacColl, Folkways (British Army Songs)

Just type D-Day in the digitrad lyrics search box at the top of the lyrics/chat page (someone else may be able to do a direct link)

Rana


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: bill\sables
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 09:17 AM

It was apparantly writen by soldiers of the 3rd something or other, either army or batilian or something, in retaliation when Lady Astor got up in the House of Commons and said that the soldiers in Italy were having it easy and dodging D Day, when in fact they were being killed by the enemy.
Bill


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Clifton53
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 11:27 AM

The Clancy Bros. also covered this one. The last verse is my favorite.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 12:53 PM

Hi,

My source* reveals that,
"...it was written in November 1944 by Lance-Sergeant Harry Pynn of the Tank Rescue Section, 19 Army Fire Brigade, who was with the 79th Division just south of Bologna Italy."

Lady Astor did not feature in Pynn's original text. Any documentation of her alleged remarks has not sufaced - she in fact denied making them.
She was better known as the first woman to take her seat in the House of Commons in 1919.
I believe she also requested that a Confederate flag be buried with her remains.

Hope this helps,
Colwyn

*"What A Lovely War! - British Soldiers' Songs"
Author - Roy Palmer.

'Come on and join,
Come on and join,
Come on and join,
Lord Kitchener's Army.
Ten bob a Week,
Plenty grub to eat,
Bloody geat boots
Make blisters on yer feet.'


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Sarah2
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 02:56 PM

Hi, Colwyn, and thanks for the further info; in the USA, she's better known as an embarrasment to the country of her origin: one of those who married an Englishman and became more "English" than the natives.

Wasn't she the butt of the Churchill story who, finding him into his cups, said, "Winston, you're drunk!" -- to which he replied, "Yes, madam, and you are ugly. The difference is that tomorrow I shall be sober." ...?

What's "geat" mean when it's at home?

Sarah


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Irish sergeant
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 02:59 PM

I Play the song frequently and have always seen it credited to Hamish Henderson. Thanks all for the additional information. Anyone know how the Lady Astor story came about? I'd like the details on that and wheither she actually did make the comments attributed to her. Kindest reguards, Neil


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Snuffy
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 06:03 PM

The "Winston you're drunk" story is usually concerning the Liverpool socialist MP Bessie Braddock.

Nancy Astor is supposed to have said "If I were married to you, Winston, I'd poison your coffee." To which Churchill replied "If I were married to you, Nancy, I'd drink it!"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,colwyn dane
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 07:27 PM

Hi,

Sarah it looks as I have unintentionally minted a new word - I should have used a spell-checker.
It should have read as 'great' and not 'geat' - pardon me.

Neil - an alternative story about Nancy Astor and again from the same source I quoted previously:

"...is that, as a member of a parliamentary delegation visiting Italy in October 1944 she
voiced similar sentiments [as contained in the song], adding that the troops were drunken, dissolute and oversexed.
Again no written evidence but she was nevertheless well known for her hauteur, and the popular view stuck."

The evolutionary song-writing process went to work and Harry Pynn's version was changed to first of all to include the following:

"Now, Lady Astor, get a load of this:
Don't stand on a platform and talk a load of piss,
You're the nation's sweetheart, the nation's pride,
But your mouth's too bleeding wide,
For we are the D-Day dodgers in sunny Italy."


This version was also sung:

"Oh, Lady Astor, listen please to us,
Don't get on a platform and make a bloody fuss.
We know you were the services' sweetheart and pride;
You opened your mouth a bit too wide.
We were the D-Day dodgers, the boys who D-Day dodge."


And this one too:

"You've heard of Lady Astor, our pin-up girl out here,
She is the dear old lady who tries to stop our beer;
And when we get our Astor band
We'll be the proudest in the land,
We are the D-Day dodgers, way out in Italy."

The final verse of Harry Pynn's song is:

"Now Winston Churchill, give us leave at home,
Now we have captured Naples, Florence, Rome.
We'll come back and beat the master race,
And Grigg* has got some shipping space,
Oh please let us see home, oh please let us see home."

* Sir James Grigg - Minister for War.

Just my 2percent.
Colwyn.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: John Routledge
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 07:49 PM

Hi Colwyn Dane - Great is sometimes said as geat in NE England dialect so don't bother with spellchecker! Cheers Geordie Broon


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 11:16 AM

I have known this song for 50 years. I first heard it during my army service in the Royal Artillery, sung by an old soldier at a regimental 'smoker'. This man, a Battery Sergeant Major, had been in the Italian Campaign during the war. I learned the song from him and the tale about Lady Astor's slur, but forgot verses through course of time but was able to refresh my memory via the versions sung around the folk scene. I sang my version to Hamish Henderson and he was happy with it so I guess my cobbled together version was OK. Howevr I have heard it sung in clubs almost as a jolly chorus song and I must take issue with this apporoach. There is some bitterly sarcastic humour in there,but it is NOT a funny song.I always remember the intensity with which my old BSM sang it despite the relaxed atmospher of the smoker. It's a great song I think.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Snuffy
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 07:22 PM

Burl, I remember bits of another song to the tune of Lili Marlene we used to sing in the Gunners in the 60's. Was it around in your time?

Early in the morning, getting on parade
The Battery Sergeant-Major sang the "Donkey Serenade"
Some silly bugger said "Right Dress!"
You should have seen the bloody mess
We are the Royal Artillery, we are a bloody shower.

Driving down the Autobahn at sixty miles an hour
We are the Royal Artillery, we are a bloody shower.
Some silly bugger gave a cough,
The motor burst, a wheel dropped off
We are the Royal Artillery, we are a bloody shower.

I would guess the second verse makes it post-war BAOR in origin.

Wassail! V


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 08:17 PM

Snuffy, thanks for that. I don't know it, it's after my time I suppose, but I love it. Genuine millitary folklore.I was quite lucky in that there were still quite a few old sweats in when I was, pre-war blokes. I heard quite a bit from them, McCafferty, Soldier Cut Down in his prime, The Somersetshire,that was about a tropship, one called He'll Be There..in his little barrack room across the square. Plus a version of 7 Nights Drunk that made frequent use of the 'c' word. I heard a version of 'The Boston Burglar' where the last line was changed from 'Serve my time in the penitentiary' to '.....in the Royal Artillery'.There were recitations too,one about 'dying without permission' - I wish I'd written them down. I learned old army slang too -'Bundook' meaning a rifle, (we had 303's),'Glasshouse' for the prison, 'swinging the lead' for skiving, '7 mile snipers' for us, the R.A. At Christmas the officers would serve the o.r's with rum or brandy in the morning, a custom called 'Gunfire'. I don't suppose any of that to you , itwas a long time ago. But thanks for bringing back some memories. Cheers Gunner Snuffy.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,colwyn dane
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 09:09 PM

Hi,

This Site has a version of the song which it attributes to Major Hamish Henderson of the 51st Highland Division.


And this Site has the fully Harry Pynn version - check the site index to access.
Unfortunately the sitemaster has drawn on the same source as myself - Roy Palmer's book - so the trail is not very warm.

Snuffy the song you quoted was sung by the REME in BAOR in the 50's;
for Royal Artillery replace with 'dreamy REME" one verse goes like so:-

"Down in the NAAFI beer-bar, twenty pints an hour,
We are the dreamy REME, we are a bloody shower.
We pick them up and we drink them down,
Pissed as a newt on half-a-crown,
We are the dreamy REME, we are a bloody shower.


Get hold of Roy Palmer's work it has over 120 songs and spans over a hundred years of soldiering.

Cheers,
Colwyn.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,trish
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 11:45 AM

There is another verse to Dodgers which I sing (off a Johnnie Collins collection)

One day we heard a rumour we were going home
Back to dear old Blighty and never more to Rome
Then someone said "In France you'll fight"
We said "No fear, we're sitting tight
We are the D Day Dodgers in sunny Italy"
(or "Way out in Italy")


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: The Walrus
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 01:41 PM

Snuffy,

Like Colwyn, I'd only heard your 'RA' song about the 'Dreamy REME'.

A varient on your second verse runs:

Speeding down the Autobahn at ninety miles an hour
We are the Dreamy REME, we're such a bloody shower.
We can't change up, we can't change down,
'Cos we fitted the gearbox upside down
We are the reamy REME, we are a bloody shower.

Regards

Walrus


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: artbrooks
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 01:54 PM

British military slang, or just UK English...what does "shower" mean?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,Bill
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 07:00 PM

the version compiled by Hamish Henderson was-

We're the D day dodgers way off in Italy
Always on the vino always on a spree
Eighth army scroungers and their tanks
We live in Rome among the yanks
We are the D day dodgers way out in Italy
We are the D day dodgers way out in Italy

We landed in Salerno a holiday with pay
the Jerries brought the bands out to cheer us on our way
Showed us the sights and gave us tea
We all sang songs the beer was free
To welcome D day dodgers to sunny Italy
To welcome D day dofgers to sunny Italy

Naples ans Casino were taken in our stride
We didn't go to fight there we went just for the ride
Anzio and Sangro were just names we only went to look for dames
The artful D day dodgers wat out in Italy
The artful D day dodgers way out in Italy

Dear Lady Astor you think you're mighty hot
Standing on the platform talking Tommy rot
You're England's sweetheart and her pride
We think your mouth's too bloody wide
We are the D day dodgers in sunny Italy
We are the D day dodgers in sunny Italy

Look around the mountains in the sun and rain
You'll find the scattered crosses the sum that have no name
Heartbreak and toil and suffering gone
The boys beneath them slumber on
They are the D day dodgers that stay in Italy
They are the D day dodgers that stay in Italy   


I heard Hamish sing this version in a folk concert in Edinburgh a few years ago, I don't know if he oois still alive he was in his eightys then.

Bill (the ex sound)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Gareth
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 07:52 PM

Art - general slang - short for a "Shower of s**t" - a group of useluse B*****d's

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 09:14 PM

Two threads, (34510) and this one, are adding new material to the story, songs and lyrics, fitting since June 6th and our veterans are still in our minds.
Several compilations have been attributed to Major Hamish Henderson, all somewhat different.
The original lyrics attributed to Lance Sergeant Harry Pynn apparently lacked any mention of Lady Astor (nor is there any documentation showing that she ever made the remarks- probably invented by anti-Americans). Comments by Jim Dixon and others in the threads flesh out these comments.

Some versions have a first verse that often seems to be left out. It is included in the very full version at http://ingeb.org, and also appears in a version from Signalman Jack Linden Cull. It may point to verses sung to Lili Marlene that pre-date the D-Day Dodgers verses. This from the typescript by Jack Linden Cull (8th Army, 2nd Battalion, Parachute Regiment:

The "D" Dodgers

There is a song Eight Army used to sing
Marching thro the desert, marching with a swing
But now they're on a different game
Although the tune is (still) the same,
The words have all been altered-
The words we're singing still.

We're the "D" day Dodgers here in Italy
Drinking all the vino, always on the spree,
We didn't land with Eisenhower,
Ans so they think we're just a shower.
For we're the "D" Day Dodgers out here in Italy.

To look at the origin of the song from another viewpoint:

"The "D-Day Dodgers" were Irish troops sent in 1943, the year before D-Day, into Sicily and then up the boot of Italy by the British high command to do some of the nastiest fighting in all of World War II.
Those Irish lads were alongside American and other Allied soldiers who paid hideous prices at Salerno, Naples, Casino and Anzio. The Brits never did entirely trust Irish when armed, in part because they were, to be honest about it, some who sympathized with Gerrmany.
"But the overwhelming majority of Irish people was solidly in the Allied camp---"

"The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem have celebrated these lads--- Aching with bitter irony and dripping Irish sarcasm (Canadian parallel in "Onwards to the PO," thread 34510), the ballad concludes in loving patriotism;

"Look around the mountains,
in the mud and rain.
You see the scattered crosses
-there's some that have no name.

Heartbreak and toil
and suffering gone,
The boys beneath them slumber on.
They are the D-Day Dodgers
-who stay in Italy."

From a column by John L. Perry: D-Day Dodgers

Extended compilation in ingeb: D-Day Dodgers

Thread 34510, "Onwards to the Po": Lyr D-Day Dodgers


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 Jun 03 - 04:41 AM

I've heard this verse-

When we went to Florence, we had a lovely time,
Ran a bus to Rimini right through the Gothic line,
Next to Bolognia we will go,
In the afternoon we'll cross the Po,
We are....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: The Walrus
Date: 08 Jun 03 - 08:26 AM

"..."The "D-Day Dodgers" were Irish troops sent in 1943, the year before D-Day, into Sicily and then up the boot of Italy by the British high command to do some of the nastiest fighting in all of World War II..."

Guest O,

Where did these Irish come from?

I can only find reference to 5 Irish Battalions in the whole of the British Order of Battle:-

2nd Battalion, The Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (13th Infantry Brigade, 5th Infantry Division, XIII Corps)

1st Battalion, The London Irish Rifles (168th Infantry Brigade, 50th Infantry Division, XIII Corps)

and
      
38th (Irish) Infantry Brigade
6th Battalion, The Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers
1st Battalion, The Royal Irish Fusiliers
2nd Battalion, The London Irish Rifles

(78th Infantry Division, 8th Army)

and from what I can see, none of these units were detatched from, their parent units.

As for "..."The "D-Day Dodgers" were Irish troops sent in 1943..." Sorry, there were more Scots Battallions, Canadian Battallion and English Battalions (I'm sorry, I haven't counted the number of Commonwealth, or Allied Battalions as I only have the British & Canadian OoB to hand), than Irish Battalions, and that's without tanks, guns, engineers etc.
That's not to say there weren't Irishmen in those units, but then the Irish units weren't homogeneously Irish either.

I'm fel a rant coming on, so I'll stop before the keyboard becomes a soapbox.


Walrus


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 08 Jun 03 - 01:45 PM

I posted the column by John Perry about the Irish troops because it stopped me and made me gape. I am familiar mostly with writings about the Canadian troops involved in the advance up the boot. I do not know how the Clancys and Makem led into the song at their concerts- Perry's take could be way off the mark, not only historically, as Walrus says, but with regard to the Clancy-Makem presentation, which I haven't heard.

Many units were involved. Each developed its own 'take' on the progress of the advance and the relative value of contributions by other units. Resentment about real or imagined slights and deficiencies grew as the advance- in the minds of many of the soldiers poorly managed- went on. This is reflected in the songs, which, like the verses about Lady Astor, sometimes are based on fiction. An overall historical view of he campaign glosses over these resentments, which, at least among some of the Canadians who were in the advance, still surface. The same types of bitterness, I am sure, exist among the survivors of other units, including the Irish. The views held by some of these veterans may be provincial and unjustified in perspective, but the resentment remains.

Resentment in Canadian troops applied as well to actions by the politicians and men of fighting age who remained at home. When conscription was passed in Canada, conscripts could not be sent overseas unless they volunteered for overseas service. Some 70,000 chose to wait out the war at home. These 'zombies' received mention in the songs as well. The resentment remains.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: D Day Dodgers
From: The Walrus
Date: 08 Jun 03 - 08:24 PM

Guest O,

My apologies. I mis-read the post as being your take on the Sicily/Italy campagns (hence the request for sources) rather than a report of an introduction by a 'modern' performer (and presumably tailored to their audience).

Regards

Walrus


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