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Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail

GUEST,chrisj 16 Oct 01 - 10:35 PM
Bob Bolton 16 Oct 01 - 11:09 PM
GUEST 17 Oct 01 - 10:34 AM
GUEST,John Gray/Australia 17 Oct 01 - 12:55 PM
Bob Bolton 17 Oct 01 - 11:46 PM
Bob Bolton 18 Oct 01 - 09:34 AM
nutty 18 Oct 01 - 12:38 PM
GUEST,chrisj 18 Oct 01 - 09:50 PM
Bob Bolton 18 Oct 01 - 11:31 PM
Bob Bolton 06 Nov 01 - 01:50 AM
GUEST,chrisj 06 Nov 01 - 07:13 AM
Bob Bolton 07 Nov 01 - 07:17 AM
GUEST,John Gray / Australia 07 Nov 01 - 07:23 AM
GUEST 29 Mar 04 - 06:59 AM
The Fooles Troupe 29 Mar 04 - 08:15 PM
Bob Bolton 29 Mar 04 - 11:16 PM
Amos 29 Mar 04 - 11:58 PM
GUEST,Libby - Australia 27 Apr 04 - 08:16 AM
The Fooles Troupe 27 Apr 04 - 10:41 AM
Helen 28 Apr 04 - 05:23 PM
The Fooles Troupe 28 Apr 04 - 08:34 PM
Helen 30 Apr 04 - 05:37 PM
Helen 30 Apr 04 - 05:45 PM
Roo 01 May 04 - 05:30 AM
GUEST,Dale 01 May 04 - 11:09 AM
Hrothgar 02 May 04 - 02:01 AM
GUEST,Lisa 24 Apr 05 - 06:39 PM
The Fooles Troupe 24 Apr 05 - 07:10 PM
The Fooles Troupe 24 Apr 05 - 07:16 PM
Sandra in Sydney 25 Apr 05 - 08:16 AM
The Fooles Troupe 25 Apr 05 - 08:42 AM
Muttley 25 Apr 05 - 08:46 AM
The Fooles Troupe 25 Apr 05 - 09:03 AM
Sandra in Sydney 25 Apr 05 - 09:30 AM
robomatic 25 Apr 05 - 09:56 AM
The Fooles Troupe 25 Apr 05 - 10:07 PM
Bob Bolton 26 Apr 05 - 01:00 AM
GUEST 14 May 09 - 08:53 AM
Rowan 14 May 09 - 07:44 PM
Bruce D 15 May 09 - 10:56 AM
Bruce D 15 May 09 - 11:00 AM
GUEST,Hamish Wyatt 24 Apr 10 - 08:36 PM
The Fooles Troupe 24 Apr 10 - 11:48 PM
GUEST,Gerry 25 Apr 10 - 08:52 AM
GUEST,roseanne74 03 Dec 10 - 12:46 AM
GUEST,Birdman585 03 Dec 10 - 07:45 AM
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Subject: Kokoda Trail?
From: GUEST,chrisj
Date: 16 Oct 01 - 10:35 PM

On reading through the 'Craigielee/Waltzing Matilda' thread I came across a passing reference to the Kokoda Trail, the Australian military campaign in New Guinea during the war.

I posted a query on the existence of any song about such a significant event for Australia on that thread but, on reflection, since those most likely to be able to provide an answer to my request have probably been there already, I think it better to start a new thread.

So, are there any songs dealing with the Kokoda Trail campaign in World War II? I'd appreciate any replies and/or comments on the significance of 'Kokoda' for Australia.


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 16 Oct 01 - 11:09 PM

G'day Chrisj,

I will sound out a few military/history contacts on songs about the Kokoda Track. Offhand, I can't think of any song that is simply about the Kokoda Track ... the track is just the single feature that joins a lot of running battles.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Oct 01 - 10:34 AM

Hi Chrisj

I was the one who brought up the awful parody which mentions the Kokoda Trail.

Sadly, I can't think of a non-parody song about the Trail, which is odd given it's importance in Australia's military history and its emotional significance.

I'll keep ears out and ask around.

regards

Callie


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,John Gray/Australia
Date: 17 Oct 01 - 12:55 PM

chrisj.

I don't know any songs that refer to Kokoda but the battles there early in the Pacific war certainly have prominence in Aust. military history.
In early 42 Aust. was largely undefended as it's professional army, all volunteers, were fighting Rommel in North Africa, or had just been captured at the fall of Singapore.
The only military force in Aust. was the Militia comprising mainly of conscripted soldiers.One rule regarding their conscription was that they were only to serve in mainland Aust.. When the Japanese invaded Papua/New Guinea the degree of alarm was such that the legislation was changed so the Militia could serve in Aust. Mandated Territories, of which PNG was one.
The Japanese landed on the north coast of PNG and were pouring down the Kokoda Track to capture the capitol, Port Moresby, on the south coast. The Militia were rushed to Port Moresby and, seriously under equipped, pushed north up the K.T. They met the Japanese some 26 miles from P.M. and in a series of murderous battles in hideous conditions they defeated the Japanese and held them until some units of the Aust. volunteer army could come and assist. This was the first time the Japanese had been defeated in WWII and their army in PNG was a well seasoned outfit that had been campaigning since 1933. To be beaten by ill-equipped battalions of a part-time army must have been a blow to the Japanese morale.
And it surprised our professional volunteer army as well. They displayed a lot of animosity towards the Militia, saying, they weren't real soldiers because they didn't volunteer like us and what would they know about fighting etc. They berated them as Choco's ( chocolate soldiers )and I'm not sure if this is because they wore a different coloured uniform or wore a brown colour patch on their sleeve. Anyway, they certainly proved themselves real soldiers at Kokoda.
The Aust War Memorial website has a couple of dozen photographs that you can access on their database. www.awm.gov.au then click on photo database and in the window that comes up type the word kokoda. Good Luck.

JG / FME.


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 17 Oct 01 - 11:46 PM

G'day again,

Thanks, John Gray/Australia for giving that summary. I have not had a chance to really research, but your comments are pretty close to my impression: the Kokoda Track ... as an entity ... doesn't feature in what songs have survived from the period. I tend to think there may be a few that mention individual battles ... but it was a long hard series of battles, not a single, defined encounter.

When I get home, I will scan in a poem by John Dengate that was included in John's first book My Shout!, which I published for the Bush Music Club in 1982.

This is about a survivor of the battles - a "choco" ... now reduced to alcoholism by the ghosts of that struggle. There is some reference to the taunts in the poem and John, before he recites it these days, has to explain in more detail how the name has many different aspects: "Chocolate box soldier" (just a picture of the real thing); and: "You'll melt in battle [or the tropics] like a bar of chocolate" are 2 that come to mind.

The poem also mentions some of the horrendous battles, by name.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: Lyr Add: LANES OF WOOLLOOMOOLOO (John Dengate)
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 18 Oct 01 - 09:34 AM

G'day yet again,

I had a good look at the publications, including one of the most recent of "Diggers' Songs" (Australian soldiers' songs) ... and not a single reference of Kokoda, per se. Most of the songs come from palces where the soldiers had the occasional time to spend making up songs ... not out on the Kokoda!

Anyway, her is John Dengate's poem:

LANES OF WOOLLOOMOOLOO
By John Dengate

Oh, then who's your mate, my Johnny lad,
so drunk he can hardly stand
With his eyeballs staring so wildly
and his violently shaking hand?
His name is not for the naming,
but his story I'll tell you true;
He's a child of the great depression
from the lanes of Woolloomooloo.
Reared on bread and dripping
And on dollops of dole plum jam,
He dodged the police and his father's boot
And his fare on the city tram.
Mustered in the militia
on the wharves of Woolloomooloo,
Fought disease and the Japanese
In the summer of '42.
Never you mind his shaking hand
Or his strangely twisted mouth;
He was cut off at Templeton's Crossing
When the Japs came swarming south,
He wept and prayed in the jungle
And God to his prayers was deaf:
Chocko! Retreat on your bleeding feet,
And where was the A.I.F.?
You'll find him now in Bell's Hotel
Or round by the Domain;
You'll find him under a Moreton Bay,
Sleeping it off in the rain,
You'll find him wandering William Street
Without any work to do,
He's a child of the great depression
from the lanes of Woolloomooloo.
He's a hollow, dirty derelict,
abandoned by the fates;
His soul's at Templeton's Crossing
With his dead militia mates,
White lady is his mistress,
They fornicate and woo,
Spawning blind oblivion
in the lanes of Woolloomooloo.

John's notes give:
Templeton's Crossing: New Guinea battlefield
Chocko: Chocolate soldier – derisive term for militiaman (An Australian soldier who had not volunteered for the A.I.F)
White Lady: Methylated spirits and lemonade.

To which I probably should add:
A.I.F. : Australian Imperial Force – the regular army units.
Dole: Unemployment payments, and some food issues, made during the great depression (1929/39)
Domain: Public park area to the east of Sydney, frequented by the homeless
Methylated spirits: Denatured alcohol – originally made poisonous with methyl alcohol but now rendered nauseating with turpentine. The cheapest possible alcohol.
Moreton Bay: The Moreton Bay Fig – a wide-spreading tree with large leaves planted widely in Sydney's inner city parks.
William Street: Major street of Kings Cross – inner eastern suburb of Sydney
Woolloomooloo: East Sydney harbourside suburb – once slums, but these are being 'gentrified' as their value rises.

Published in My Shout! Songs and Poems by John Dengate, Bush Music Club, Sydney, 1982

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: nutty
Date: 18 Oct 01 - 12:38 PM

Is this the same KOKODA that Eric Bogle mentions in ALL THE FINE YOUNG MEN


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,chrisj
Date: 18 Oct 01 - 09:50 PM

Sincere thanks to all who answered my query. As luck would have it I was out all day yesterday so didn't have a chance to respond earlier. Bob, Callie and John, the information you've provided is fascinating and makes me wonder even more at the apparant lack of songs about the Kokoda campaign in the Australian canon. I have lived many years here in Oz but I confess I was quite ignorant of the ramifications of Kokoda until the then Prime Minister Keating visited the area (1992?) and dropped to his knees to kiss the ground. It was shown on TV news and was either a spontaneous act of homage to brave men or a carefully calculated politician's stunt, but for me at least, the act itself transcended any base motivation it might have had. It also stirred the first faint tinglings of patriotism in me for my adopted country. Thanks again, ChrisJ


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 18 Oct 01 - 11:31 PM

G'day again Chrisj,

I think the only explanation for the lack of songs directly out of the Kokoda campaign is something like what I said above: this was a hellhole of continuous battle for a bunch of scared kids ... who fought like hell and held back the professional Japanese army. It wasn't a time to sing ... and the militia didn't have the body of song ... official, regimental and folk ... that sustains the the regular army.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: Lyr Add: ONLY A Q
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 06 Nov 01 - 01:50 AM

G'day again chrisj,

Here are a few items that relate to the query about songs from the Kokoda Campaign. These turned up while I was chasing something unrelated - but contributed by some veterans of that part of the World War, to a friend, folklorist Rob Willis.
The first relates to the vexed question of the "Chockos" – the Militia … conscripts fighting alongside the volunteers of the A.I.F. The second is included because it relates to that same terrain -–the high passes and dense jungle – now holding isolated pockets of Japanese forces determined not to suffer the dishonour of surrender.

I was chasing up something quite different, when I came across these two sets of words in a bound set of the Australian Folklore Society Journal, Issues 1 to 20. (The Rams Skull Press, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia, 1993 – edited by Ron Edwards.) These come from a series of eleven items collected in 1991 from Queenslander Bill Maddock. The Journal is printed without music and it is not clear whether either of these were songs or poems, as Bill did both. (I need to get in touch with Ron Edwards on other matters, so I will try to clear that up … whenever.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


ONLY A Q

As I sit and I write, a scene I can see
On the top of the mighty Tamboo.
A scene that made an impression on me
And I hope it does on you.

Two lonely graves exactly the same,
Fashioned from rude bamboo.
But one had an X in front of his name'
And the other - only a Q.

But lest we forget let us drink that toast,
And honour the mighty dead.
But which of them should we honour the most,
When both for this country bled.

Each gave his life, he could give no more,
Each fought for his country too.
But one had an X in front of his name,
And the other - only a Q.

Will the ghostly sentry turn him,
When he stands before the gate?
Will his wounds be his pass?
Or the letter engraved on the metal tag?

Is it true that they will scorn him?
Do dead men, like the living, brag?
But one had an X in front of his name,
And the other - only a Q.

Collector's Note:
"This was collected by Ron Edwards from Bill Maddock of Cairns, Queensland, 20 October 1991. He said that one of the boys wrote it during the war in P(apua/) N(ew) G(uinea). He explained that the soldier's serial numbers were prefixed with either a Q or an X. The men with the X were enlisted, but those with a Q had been conscripted and, as a result, were looked down upon by some members of the public."

Bill Maddock, born 18 June 1925, was modelled after the old style bush poet and yarn spinner. He had a yarn for every occasion, and a joke for every circumstance, and he had a good collection of songs and recitations. Most of these were popular songs of the day, but amongst his repertoire were a number of other interesting items. …
He had served in the Army as a young man during the Second World War, mainly in New Guinea, and a lot of his items were learned then, but he also had songs and recitations that he had picked up while working as a carpenter and builder around Cape York, the Gulf Country and in the Cairns area."

Another of Bill's items relates to the general scene of the Kokoda – but comes from the tail end of the campaign against the Japanese – when the last pockets of resistance were being "mopped up" – often against fanatical resistance.

BTW: I like the way that the usaul image of the Pearly Gates and the patriarchal St Peter have turned into "the ghostly sentry ... When he stands before the gate?

Mopping up

We're nineteen dead in the Bunie trail,
Ten more on the jungle track,
And all day long there's a steady stream,
Of our wounded flowing back.
We fought all night by the Hongari,
With never a bite or sup,
But tomorrow's back page news will quote;
"Our soldiers are just mopping up".

Collector's Note:
"Collected by Ron Edwards from Bill Maddock of Cairns, Qld, 19 Oct 1991. This was composed in Borneo in 1945, by either Tiger Connell or Hank Hansen, Bill wasn't quite sure."


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,chrisj
Date: 06 Nov 01 - 07:13 AM

Bob Bolton, Many thanks for all your efforts. It looks as if there could have been quite a lot of 'folklore' in circulation about Kokoda after the men came back but for reasons best known to the authorities and media of the day it was not given 'front page' treatment.

I didn't get here until the 'sixties and although I've always been interested in history I've never come across any detailed accounts of the campaign in books or films or on tv. Maybe the fact that Japan is our biggest trading partner had something to do with it.


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 07 Nov 01 - 07:17 AM

G'day chrisj,

I think the "suppression" was more in the nature of the normal wartime restrictions on anything that the deskbound wallahs thought was "detrimental to the general morale" than later trading partnerships. Very little of waht the average soldier wrote or sang found its way into print in the '40s. This is, in a way, what the Bush Music Club baegan to address when it formed in 1954 ... but, by then we had a new set of battles to worry about ... Korea, Malaya &c.

There are collectors chasing the last traces of these reminiscences now ... often liberated by the freer approach that came out of the Vietnam debacle. Right now, I have been talking to field collectors that are getting material that dates back to the Kokoda days, so there may yet be a body of folklore from this campaign - but the boys that sang it are getting very old!

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,John Gray / Australia
Date: 07 Nov 01 - 07:23 AM

Bob B. An aside to the poem you listed, Lanes of Woolloomooloo.
One of the lines is; You'll find him now in Bell's Hotel. As a young sailor in Sydney in the 60's I drank in the Rockers, the sailors hotel over the road from the Bells. In those days the Bells was owned by the ex-world boxing champion - Jimmy Carruthers. When we got thrown out of the Rockers, for fighting, we'd end up in the Bells nursing a beer and a shirtfull of bruised ribs. Aaaahhhh the old days.

JG / F.M.E.


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Subject: RE: Help: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Mar 04 - 06:59 AM

HEY IS THERE ANY ONE TO HELP ME ?
IVE GOT A ASSIGNMENT AND IAM STUCK IN ........ IN SOME QUESTION ABOUT THE KOKODA TRACK?
WHERE IS THE KOKODA TRACK? WHY THE AUSTRALIAN FIGHTING THERE ? WHAT DID THE AUSTRALIAN SOLDIERS DO THERE ? WHAT WERE SOME REASONS FOR THIS RESULTS AND WHO WERE FUZZY WUZZY ANGLES AND WHAT DID THEY DO ?

IF ANY ONE HERE FIND THE ANSWERS PLZ SOON AS U CAN SEND IT TO MY MAIL: MMSA_2003@YAHOO.COM.AU

BYE


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 29 Mar 04 - 08:15 PM

Un-named GUEST - (pretending to be a non-muso about 13 years old, or perhpas younger) - nice try with harvesting addresses from Spam. :-)

Why were they fightingthere - was explained earlier in thé thread - you must be illiterate if you couldnt read that - we're not going to do your homework for you!

Try searching encyclopedias (not US ones!) - Aussies were fighting there to stop the Japanese taking Papua/New Guinea to jump off for Australia.

Some mad Aussie Choco Soldier picked up a Bren gun & charged them, which was the turning point...

We had at home in the 1950's & 60's, the remnant of a bottle of "Kokoda"mossie repellant - smelt like 900 proof whiskey with some strong herbal overtones - evaporated rather quickly too... :-)

Robin


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 29 Mar 04 - 11:16 PM

G'day GUEST,

And just to complete the on-line answer to your questions:

the Fuzzy-wuzzy Angels were New Guinea natives who assisted Australian troops fighting in the mountain and jungle areas - particularly those who acted as guides, stretcher bearers and first aid assisants for wounded soldiers.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Amos
Date: 29 Mar 04 - 11:58 PM

Bob., et al:

Thanks a million for a stunning history lesson I never got in my travels through the US school system!

A


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,Libby - Australia
Date: 27 Apr 04 - 08:16 AM

Hi I have been looking for a chance to speak to someone who has perhaps travelled the Kokoda Trail as I am looking at doing it with my 15 year old son in August 2005


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 27 Apr 04 - 10:41 AM

GUEST,Libby - Australia,

You'd be better off contacting the R.S.L. than asking here - on a Music Forum.

Robin


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Helen
Date: 28 Apr 04 - 05:23 PM

Libby,

I saw someone on tv or radio talking about that a couple of weeks ago. Whoever it was said it was well worth the effort, although a bit of a hard slog. It was someone famous here in Oz, or semi-famous at least. I'll try to remember who it was and then you may be able to track down what they said or even contact them.

Helen
in Newcastle, NSW


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 28 Apr 04 - 08:34 PM

It was some Footballer - 'Gilly' - not a football fan myself.


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Helen
Date: 30 Apr 04 - 05:37 PM

Robin,

I'm not a footy fan either, so I have no idea who "Gilly" is. Is that his name or nickname?

It's probably why I didn't remember who had been talking about it. The name meant nothing to me anyway.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Helen
Date: 30 Apr 04 - 05:45 PM

Libby,

If you do a Google.com search for the "Kokoda Track" or "Kokoda Trail" you will find heaps of info, and some trekking companies who charge for guided treks etc.

Also, when I loaded this thread up first, today, there were some links down the bottom to some of these walks.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Roo
Date: 01 May 04 - 05:30 AM

"Much-loved singer of Australian songs, Slim Dusty, sang a song concerning that memorable victory of early November 1942. Co-written with Tony Brooks, the title of the ballad is Kokoda Track."

This is not a war song but at least is a song about the track. The quote above is from Chris Woodland's article titled:
KOKODA - TRACK OR TRAIL?
This appears online in issue 6 of Simply Australia and is in its archived section. It is an interesting read about the use of the words "track" and "trail".


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE KOKODA ANTHEM (BATTLE FOR AUSTRALIA)
From: GUEST,Dale
Date: 01 May 04 - 11:09 AM

I have not heard it, so I can't judge its quality, but there is a new (late 2003) song called Kokoda Anthem (Battle For Australia) sung by Adam Harvey & Gina Jeffreys, two well known Australian Country singers. The link is to the lyrics and the 10 minute CD single which ABC is selling for AU$5.95.

THE KOKODA ANTHEM (BATTLE FOR AUSTRALIA)
Frank Gallagher (ABC Publishing)

Our Anzacs left for over there
When darkness fell on Leicester Square
In freedom's name for liberty
They fought and died for you and me
Poland's gone, France has fell
Pearl Harbor blown to hell
Prison camps, millions dead
Europe's burning, newsreel said

Australian sons of the Southern Cross
It's time to stand against the odds
The Kokoda Trail and the Rising Sun
And fight with God 'til the battle's won

The Kokoda Trail the track to hell
Where soldier sons and angels fell
That mountain range of death and pain
Where young blood flowed like jungle rain
The Kokoda Trail the track from hell
Where Fuzzy Wuzzy angels dwell
Heroic souls to guide us on
And safely bring our wounded home

Australian sons of the Southern Cross
Victorious against the odds
The Kokoda Trail and the Rising Sun
They took them on and fought and won
Australian sons of the Southern Cross
Victorious against the odds
The Kokoda Trail and the Rising Sun
They took them on and fought and won

They took them on and fought and won


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Hrothgar
Date: 02 May 04 - 02:01 AM

The footballer was former rugby league player Trevor Gillmeister, and the programme was "The World Around Us" on Channel 7 on Anzac Day.


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,Lisa
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 06:39 PM

Hi,

Can anyone give me information on how to find out about my grandfather who served on the Kokoda trail. any info would be good.thanks


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 07:10 PM

Contact the R.S.L. for a start.


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 07:16 PM

BTW, it is ANZAC day in Australia right now, an appropriate time to have this thread refreshed.


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Track
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 08:16 AM

Guest, Lisa -
try the Australian War Memorial Australian War Memorial as mentioned in an earlier thread. They have a very well equiped library with records about Australian service personnel from all wars & a marvellous collection of artifacts & diaries.

ps. Kokoda Track is the usual Australian name - trail is an American usage.

hello, Joe or clones - can you change the thread title?

sandra


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 08:42 AM

... and there weren't very many Yanks fighting ON the Track...


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Muttley
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 08:46 AM

Two points:
The person seeking info on DOING the Kokoda and heard about a 'footballer' doing it - 'The Track' was also done as a 'team-building' exercise by the entire Hawthorn AFL club (in late 2004, I believe) - maybe THEY can help you with contacting a guide or group to set it up: The Track MUST be done with the correct backup and resources - as it can still kill the unwary traveller. (and that's WITHOUT some bugger firing a rifle or machine-gun at you every step of the way!).

Second point - to the person who wrote the lyrics and then explained some of the terminology very early on; It was interesting to hear (?read) your definition of "White Lady".
My mum was born as the 'Great Depression got under way and used to recall its influences on her early life (the effects were long-lingering - well into the 'Thirties & my Grandmother (Mum's mum) also used to talk a LOT about the Depression - they're both now deceased and used to mention TWO popular alcoholic "anaesthetic" options to facing harsh reality:
The first was "Fourpenny Dark" - cheap (as the name suggests) "plonk" (alcohol) of the Sherry / Port persuasion - really cheap and nasty stuff - but quite effective. (Interesting to note that Fairfield Winery in Rutherglen; N.E, Victoria now market a well-matured Port of exceptional flavour as 'Fourpenny Dark')

The other was your 'White Lady'. However THEY both used to describe (backed by the knowledgable mutterings and sage head-bobbing affirmations of my maternal grandfather) White Lady as a mixture of Methylated Spirit and MILK - milk being cheaper than lemonade!
I can also back this description up personally as I spent 10 years as an Ambulance Officer and we frequently picked up "dunnies" and "derro's" (alcoholic, homeless men "living" on the streets and in refuges and parks around the city) in the grip of the "horror's", or "D.T.'s" - Delirium Tremens - from the effects of "White Lady" imbibement: Their version of White Lady was ALSO a concoction of Methylated Spirit and Milk as well.

Is it possible your White Lady is a Sydney or Brisbane (or some other City / State's) variation on the theme: The "Metho & Milk" version is DEFINITELY a Melbourne one.


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 09:03 AM

Dunno where Bob got his definition from. The Queensland variation of White Lady used milk. I think lemonade was more expensive than milk too.

So I was told - no personal experience, but I have SEEN it being drunk in the streets... :-) And metho was sometimes kept in the fridge in some corner stores... I have seen that...


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 09:30 AM

from Bob's earlier post -
................
John's notes give:
Templeton's Crossing: New Guinea battlefield
Chocko: Chocolate soldier – derisive term for militiaman (An Australian soldier who had not volunteered for the A.I.F)
White Lady: Methylated spirits and lemonade.
....................
Bob got his notes from the version he published in 1982, presumably using John's notes/typescript.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 09:56 AM

historical link - battle for australia


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 10:07 PM

Another thing - lemonade is acidic, milk is slightly basic, and has acidic buffering properties - it helps maintain a neutral Ph when small amounts of acid are added (the stomach secretions). The effects on the stomach of the metho would be less drastic when milk is used. It also curdles, and allows the effects of the alcohol to last longer thru slower stomach absorption. Although with lemonade, you would get a sugar hit too - but I am sure it was more expensive than milk - we didn't have 'generic brands' then.

Yesterday being Anzac Day, I thought my TV had broken again (live link to Gallipoli on all channels), but found SBS playing a doco on the Aussie built Beaufighter, used (besides putting holes in Jap destroyers) for strafing on the Kokoda Track. One of the pilots was saying that he only met one Aussie who claimed to have been strafed. He told him that couldn't be true, as he was standing there talking to him!


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Subject: RE: Kokoda Trail
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 26 Apr 05 - 01:00 AM

G'day Muttley, Foolestroupe (and anyone else not from Sydney),

I'm not surprised that non-Sydney terms and recipes are different. "Sydney or the Bush" is a definite linguistic reality, however it operates in other matters! Research into word sets and definitions (conducted on "neutral" ground ... in Canberra, during national exhibitions attracting crowds from all over Australia ... have shown that there is a distinct split between Sydney vocabulary and that of anywhere else in the country.

The Sydney influence is pronounced in a triangle bounded by Wollongong, Bathurst and Newcastle ... outside this area there is a broad similarity in accent, vocabulary and definition ... from Hobart to Cairns ... to Perth! (This matches my youthful feeling that Hobart and Brisbane, in the mid '60s, felt very similar [apart from climate details] ... and very different from Sydney, my home city.

Anyway, I had a friend who kept a small shop in Redfern in the '70s ... and he certainly sold a lot of 'methylated' spirits ... and lemonade to the same people (and not along with bottles of milk) so the metho/lemonade "White Lady" was alive and well (the white refers to the milky white colour of meths mixed with water - so my Dad told me ... from experience working with alchol-based shellac mixtures).

It should also be said, at this point, that John Dengate wasn't describing a Great Depression usage - rather the post-war drinking habits of a soldier broken by his WW 2 experience and the poor support offered to veterans whose wounds were not obvious.

Regards,

Bob


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST
Date: 14 May 09 - 08:53 AM

2 songs. 1 by slim dusty i found on lime wire called kokoda. the other song call the kokoda anthem, look it up on youtube. ull find it there. adam harvey i think sings it.
Walked the track last year, most moving yet amazing experince of my life. lets we forget


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: Rowan
Date: 14 May 09 - 07:44 PM

Reading through the thread has prompted some recollections that some may find relevant and useful.

Chocko: Chocolate soldier – derisive term for militiaman (An Australian soldier who had not volunteered for the A.I.F)

Bob used the term "regular army" in earlier posts while "A.I.F." is probably more accurate. Almost all military units in Oz up to the end of WWII were militias (with official standing) and there were very few permanent fulltime salaried soldiers that could be described as a standing army. Almost all those who fought in WWI (as the "First AIF") were militias or civvies who volunteered, which is widely regarded as the main reason Billy Hughes' efforts to introduce conscription failed.

Much the same was true of those who enlisted in the early stages of WWII (as the "Second AIF"); one's Enlistment No. (as a militia member) changed to one with a VX prefix when one enlisted in the AIF and became eligible for overseas service.

The chockos were sent into Port Moresby and up the Kokoda Track and engaged the Japanese forces in what became a hard-fought strategic withdrawal; many had had only a few weeks' basic training and some were issued weapons with no training in their use. The strategic withdrawal kept the Japanese extended over a long supply line; they came to within a very few miles of Port Moresby but were held back until battle-hardened troops that had fought Rommel were deployed (despite Churchill's attempts to divert them to Burma; many of my father's generation would spit whenever Churchill's name was mentioned). When General Blamey visited the troops at Moresby and severely criticised their performance (basically calling them cowards) the folklore suggests he was extremely close to being assassinated, so outraged were the troops; there was never any recognition of their commanders for executing such a successful strategic withdrawal.

The most effective Japanese weapon was a small artillery piece known as a mountain gun. The Australian reinforcements brought their 25 lb artillery into use, requiring the weapons to be dismantled and manhandled up atrociously steep slopes, through jungle, mud and mire and across rivers, but they eventuall pushed the Japanese back across the Owen Stanleys; the turning point (at Owen's Corner) has particular significance for me.

The first truly successful land action against the Japanese was at Milne Bay, on the northern coast of PNG at about the same time, and was composed solely of Oz militias supported from the air by the RAAF. Douglas Macarthur, as the Supreme Commander in the Pacific, wasn't going to allow his US forces to be deprived of any glory so there was no mention of Milne Bay in US military histories as a purely Oz achievement. Kokoda got mentioned but, apparently, Americans had not conception of what "Track" meant so they substituted the word "Trail", leading to endless conversations similar to the "What is folk?" discussions.

Chockos came in for appalling discrimination. In the community my father came from, South Gippsland in Victoria) there were disputed about whose name should or should not go on the local hall's Honour Roll. Such Honour Rolls list those who "Died in the service of their country" during armed conflict and the mothers of those who'd volunteered and died were dead set against having the names of those who'd been conscripted and killed listed on the Honour Roll. Appalling stuff that split the community for some years.

When WWII ended and Australians formed part of the Occupation Forces in Japan, the Oz govt established a fully functional paid standing Army and this is Australia's Regular Army, supported by the CMF (Citizens' Military Forces, which had come into being before WWI and had produced General Monash, probably Australia's most illustrious commanding officer); after Vietnam, the CMF became the Army Reserve.

But, as Bob and Alan commented, Kokoda was a grisly event and the songs that now exist came well after it was over.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: Bruce D
Date: 15 May 09 - 10:56 AM

There are quite a lot of mistakes in the above post about the Kokoda Track, I don't have the time to correct all of them, but a couple of I can comment on.

First, The battle of the Coral sea and latter the Battle for Midway set the Japanese plans back, forcing them to attack Port Morseby overland.

When the Japanese had started advancing across the Owen Standley ranges, A second front was started by the the Americans marines landed in the Solomon Islands, this threat to the Japanese was more important and most of the supplies and troops earmarked for the capture of Port Morseby.

Second. American Troops were at Milne Bay (not in large numbers) and Americian troops were part of the counter attack to retake Kokoda, Gona and Buna.

Third. As for mention of the PNG in US official history its well documented, just that the MacArther's campaigns before the retaking of the Philipines are rarely menitioned because the Pacific Island campaigns to most americian eyes was more important. But the best overview of the PNG battles I've read is an official US Army History "Victory in Papua" They give a lot of credit to the Australian in it.

Going back to the subject there are a number of song about Kokoda including "The Kododa Trail" Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels" other songs from the era include "the Yanks Back Home", "The A25 Song", Bungin 'Em In, Blowing 'Em out", The Infanteer" and "Information Please" I got these songs on a very old cassette called "Australians at War" by Barry Collerson and the Reedy River Bushmen.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: Bruce D
Date: 15 May 09 - 11:00 AM

I should finish the sentence
"this threat to the Japanese was more important and most of the supplies and troops earmarked for the capture of Port Morseby" was sent to the Solomon Islands instead.

Bruce D


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,Hamish Wyatt
Date: 24 Apr 10 - 08:36 PM

Hi there guys,

I normally wouldn't chase anyone up on this but recorded a song in 04/05 called Kokoda - you can watch the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wasceChoMfw or seach for Hamish Wyatt Kokoda.

I still have cds available.

Regards,
Hamish


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 24 Apr 10 - 11:48 PM

"It is an interesting read about the use of the words "track" and "trail". "

Reminds me of another famous song...

"There's a track going back
to an old fashioned shack"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 25 Apr 10 - 08:52 AM

David Nipperess wrote a terrific song about Kokoda, called Rugged 'N' Buggered, and he sings it on the CD, The People Have Songs.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: any song about the Kokoda Trail
From: GUEST,roseanne74
Date: 03 Dec 10 - 12:46 AM

For anyone who has heard the Adam Harvey/Gina Jeffreys song, would you agree with my assessment that its melody is somewhat based on the 60's song from America "Ballad of the Green Berets"? I can't find anywhere that gives details on where the music writer got their inspiration.


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Subject: Lyr Add: KODOKA TRACK (from Slim Dusty)
From: GUEST,Birdman585
Date: 03 Dec 10 - 07:45 AM

Here are the Lyrics to the Slim Dusty song, Kokoda Track

Kokoda Track

With no shouldered arms or bayonets fixed they march on Anzac Day,
The measured tramp of steel shod heels a memory away.
Veterans of a jungle war who went to hell and back,
Those ragged, bloody heroes of that grim Kokoda Track.

So dig your reversed rifles in the mire of memory,
The swirling mists of time have healed the scars.
You climbed that golden stairway to keep our country free,
Where the jungle hid your nightmare from the stars.

When sullen days brought no relief from blood and muck and mire,
And death was ever striding at your back,
You trod that hallowed path to be baptized in hellfire,
The ragged bloody heroes of that grim Kokoda Track.

Oh the devil took the hindmost and the snipers took the fore,
With no quarter asked or given in that muddy, bloody war.
With black angels there to guide them and the salvos by their side,
Those ragged bloody heroes simply marched and fought and died.

[Instrumental]

Astride a broken mountain top you stood defiantly,
As the devil took your comrades one by one,
He taunted you and beckoned you to face eternity,
You saluted with a burning Thompson gun

His hand was on your shoulder like a burning grip of steel,
But you turned him and you fought off his attack.
You broke the devils squadrons and you brought him to your heel,
The ragged bloody heroes of that grim Kokoda Track.

Oh the devil took the hindmost and the snipers took the fore,
With no quarter asked or given in that muddy bloody war.
While politicians pondered and great generals swelled with pride,
Those ragged bloody heroes simply marched and fought and died.

With no shouldered arms or bayonets fixed they march on Anzac Day,
With the memory of white crosses and the mounds of fresh turned clay.
Of green fields and a bugle call and a solemn requiem,
[spoken]
"And at the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them."

Those ragged bloody heroes of that grim Kokoda Track.
Those ragged bloody heroes of that grim Kokoda Track.

-------------------------------------

From his album: "Natural High"


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