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Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting

GUEST,Jo old folksinger 07 Nov 16 - 06:09 PM
Georgiansilver 07 Nov 16 - 12:09 PM
GUEST,Some bloke 07 Nov 16 - 08:08 AM
Tattie Bogle 07 Nov 16 - 07:54 AM
GUEST,henryp 06 Nov 16 - 05:13 PM
Gda Music 05 Nov 16 - 03:55 PM
Joe_F 04 Nov 16 - 09:03 PM
Jim Dixon 04 Nov 16 - 06:33 PM
Big Al Whittle 16 Jun 12 - 10:05 AM
RTim 15 Jun 12 - 06:49 PM
GUEST 15 Jun 12 - 05:53 PM
GUEST,JOE 10 Apr 07 - 05:45 PM
SouthernCelt 03 Apr 07 - 08:09 AM
Dave'sWife 03 Apr 07 - 06:49 AM
Dave'sWife 03 Apr 07 - 06:14 AM
GUEST,Joe 02 Apr 07 - 04:30 PM
alanabit 30 Mar 07 - 07:14 PM
GUEST,Soundcatcher 30 Mar 07 - 06:05 AM
Big Al Whittle 29 Mar 07 - 05:45 PM
GUEST,soundcatcher 28 Mar 07 - 10:23 PM
Peace 27 Mar 07 - 11:10 PM
Jim Dixon 27 Mar 07 - 11:04 PM
GUEST,Joe 24 Mar 07 - 11:22 AM
GUEST,Maurice Curtin 30 Jan 06 - 02:30 PM
GUEST,Allen 11 May 05 - 07:20 AM
Terry Allan Hall 10 May 05 - 06:50 PM
GUEST,simonb 10 May 05 - 05:29 PM
Dave'sWife 10 May 05 - 02:42 PM
Frank Maher 26 Apr 05 - 09:04 AM
Dave'sWife 25 Apr 05 - 10:44 PM
Malc R 25 Apr 05 - 02:44 PM
Malc R 25 Apr 05 - 02:37 PM
Malc R 25 Apr 05 - 02:19 PM
goodbar 25 Apr 05 - 12:19 AM
Dave'sWife 24 Apr 05 - 10:12 PM
Dave'sWife 21 Apr 05 - 04:27 PM
GUEST,kendall 21 Apr 05 - 06:48 AM
open mike 20 Apr 05 - 10:40 PM
GUEST,The Thing 13 Apr 05 - 11:28 PM
GUEST,DannyC 13 Apr 05 - 10:30 PM
Dave'sWife 13 Apr 05 - 02:52 PM
GUEST,Barrie Roberts 10 Apr 05 - 07:12 PM
GUEST 10 Apr 05 - 06:37 PM
Dave'sWife 09 Apr 05 - 10:32 PM
michaelr 09 Apr 05 - 12:52 PM
Dave'sWife 09 Apr 05 - 01:26 AM
GUEST,Dave'sWife at work 08 Apr 05 - 08:58 PM
GUEST,Dave'sWife at Work 08 Apr 05 - 08:27 PM
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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,Jo old folksinger
Date: 07 Nov 16 - 06:09 PM

I don't know if you are still looking for the lyrics but I heard it sung quite a bit in the 60s and 70s when I was in a folk group. It was sung to advertise the fight between Tom Cribb and Tom Molinineaux at Thistleton Gap, here in Rutland. It was a return fight and took place on 28th September 1811. Grubb knocked out Molineaux in the eleventh round. I know the first verse:
To Rutlandshire, to Rutlandshire,
All roads in England lead,
For Cribb is fighting Molineaux,
And there is sport indeed.

As it was illegle the match was publicised by singing this song in pubs etc.
Molineaux was a former African American slave.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 07 Nov 16 - 12:09 PM

This one came to mind so I researched it and found this.



It was in merry England, the home of Johnnie Bull,
Where Britons fill their glasses, they fill them brimming full,
And of the toast they drank it was to Britain's brave,
And it is long may our champion bring victories o'er the wave.

Then up jumps Uncle Sammy, and he looks across the main,
Saying, "Is that your English bully I hear bellowing again?
Oh, has he not forgotten the giant o'er the pond,
Who used to juggle cannon balls when his day's work was done?

"Remember, Uncle Johnnie, the giant stronger grows,
He is always on his muscle and ready for his foes;
When but a boy at Yorktown I caused youfor to sigh,
So when e'er youboast of fighting, Johnnie Bull, mind your eye."

It was in merry England, all in the blooming spring,
When this burly English champion he stripped off in the ring,
He striopped to fight young Heenan, our gallant son of Troy,
And to try his English muscle on our bold Benicia Boy.

There were two brilliant flags, my boy, a-floating o'er the ring,
The British were a lion all ready for a spring,
The Yankee was an eagle, and an awful bird she was,
For she carried a bunch of thunderbolds well fastened in her claws.

The coppers they were tossed, me boys, the fighting did begin,
It was two to one on Sayers, the bets came rolling in;
They fought like loyal heroes, until one received a blow,
An the red crimson torrent from our Yankee's nose did flow.

"First blood, first blood, my Tommy boy," the English cried with joy,
The English cheer their hero whille thebold Benicia boy,
The tiger rose within him, like lightning flare his eye,
Saying, "Mark away, old England, but Tommy, mind your eye."

The last grand round of all, my boys, this world has ne'er seen beat,
When the son of Uncle Sammy raised the Champion from his feet,
His followers did smile while he held him in the air,
An from his grasp he flung him, which caused the English men to stare.

Come, all you sporting Americans, wherever youhave strayed,
Look on this glorious eagle and never be afraid.
May our Union last forever an our flag the world defy,
So wherenver you boast of fighting, Johnny Bull, mind your eye.



Traditional songs about sports are relatively rare. This is probably partly because last year's sporting events are old news and partly because most of today's popular sports are relatively recent inventions. So most of the sports songs we do have are about horse racing, or hunting, or (in Ireland) hurling — or about boxing. The fight described in this ballad was amazingly popular in song; there were at least eight printed broadsides about it! The fight took place on April 17, 1860, between John C. Heenan (called "the Benicia Boy" because he grew up in Benicia, California, though he was born in New York) and British champion Tom Sayers (1826-1865). The contest was fought in Farnborough, Hampshire, England. It is said to have been the last official bare-knuckle fight. It was also quite a battle, according to Rickaby: After 37 rounds, the watchers attacked the ring (perhaps to affect the outcome). The police ended up being called, and the boxers fought five more rounds. After more than two hours in the ring, they finally gave up; the match is considered a draw.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,Some bloke
Date: 07 Nov 16 - 08:08 AM

I notice Battle is done with by MacColl & Seeger for the BBC radio ballad The Fight Game is printed above. I love that song. I used to sing another song from the same stable "When you're a fighter you're different." Excellent if dated song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 07 Nov 16 - 07:54 AM

Susanne, back in 2005, mentioned briefly (and provided lyrics) for "Benny Lynch" by Matt McGinn. Here now is a YouTube of it, with Matt singing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pr-H4oBhe7g
Benny is now also commemorated, along with other Glasgow characters of note, in a large mural on the outer wall of The Clutha Bar, since it was restored after the terrible helicopter crash there in November 2013.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,henryp
Date: 06 Nov 16 - 05:13 PM

The Rigs of the Times - edited by Roy Palmer and Jon Raven - contains songs and accounts of popular sports and pastimes in the nineteenth century.

It includes a song about prize-fighting - Sayer's and Heenan's great fight - which was considered the last great prize fight.

It took place on 17 April, 1860, for the championship of the world. Spectators took a train to a mystery destination, which turned out to be Farnborough. The fight was declared a draw.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Gda Music
Date: 05 Nov 16 - 03:55 PM

"A few names to conjure with"
Two great boxing personalities dubbed from the many recordings made
by Lord Kitchener whilst he was living in England during the late 1950s.

MELODISC 1480   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MPo-ok9O9XI&feature=youtu.be

Side 1 Dick Tiger.
Side 2 Hogan "Kid" Bassey.

GJ


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Joe_F
Date: 04 Nov 16 - 09:03 PM

The Battle is Done With
by Ewan MacColl
from The Fight Game

The battle is done with, the fighters departed,
Leaving the litter and spoils of the crowd --
The empty beer bottles, the torn silver paper,
The spent cigarette smoke that hangs like a shroud.

The champions have gone and the black squad takes over,
The ring is dismantled, the ropes lose the strain,
The cleaners are sponging the blood off the canvas,
The blood of the heroes is swilled down the drain.

The bars are deserted, the dressing rooms empty,
Stale with the smell of a thousand defeats.
The pain and the glory are already fading.
What's left is the thrill when you count the receipts.


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Subject: Lyr Add: HE'S IN THE RING DOIN' THE SAME OLD THING
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 04 Nov 16 - 06:33 PM

HE'S IN THE RING (DOIN' THE SAME OLD THING)
As recorded by Memphis Minnie, 1935.

If any o' y'all people's goin' out tonight, let's go an' see Joe Louis fight.
If you ain't got no money, try to go tomorrow night,
'Cause in the ring now, boys, he doin' his same ol' thing.

Boy, you know Joe Louis has a mean left, and he turns a mean right,
And if he hits you with either one, sends a job from a dynamite.
In that ring, now, he's doin' his same ol' thing.

I want tell all o' you prizefighters, don't play Joe Louis for no fool.
After he hit you with that left duke, sends a kick from a Texas mule.
In that ring, boys, doin' his same ol' thing.

'Cause Joe Louis is a two-fist fighter, and he stands six feet tall.
He said he would fight 'em all, if they comes, the harder they fall.
In that ring, aw, he doin' his same ol' thing.

(Tell y'all what I done.)

All I had, ten hundred dollars, I laid upon my shelf.
I bet ev'rybody pass my house, in two rounds Joe would knock him out.
In that ring, aw, he's doin' his same ol' thing.

I wouldn't even pay my house rent; I wouldn't buy me nothin' to eat.
Joe Louis … come and take a chance with me, I'm … put you on your feet.
In that ring now, he's still fightin', doin' his same ol' thing.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 Jun 12 - 10:05 AM

by Neil dalton of the Real Music and Spondon Club
The Champ O' The Midlands

I was down at the fair,
My Dad holding my hand,
And the night it was pounding,
From the Miner's Brass Band.

There was hoop-la and darts,
And a ha'penny shove,
Some swings and a dodgems,
And a Tunnel Of Love.

But the show that I wanted,
The best show that night,
Was the tent in the middle,
The bare knuckle fight.

I pestered my father,
With all my might,
'Cause the show that I wanted,
Was the bare knuckle fight.

Well, he looked at me sadly,
And then shook his head,
And he told me a story,
And here's what he said.

"It was some years ago,
That I came to this fair,
And the prize fighting tent,
Was just over there.

And a big money prize,
Was offered to all,
Who would step in the ring,
And make the champ fall.

Well, a weasily man,
In a blood spattered vest,
Invited all-comers,
To take on the best.

Yes, he challenged all-comers,
To take on the might,
Of The Champ O' the Midlands,
In a bare knuckle fight.

His sarcastic voice,
Said, 'I don't see a queue!'
So a miner stood up,
And said, 'Will I do?'

Well, the fight wasn't pretty,
The fight wasn't fair,
The crowd yelled for blood,
There was hate in the air.

And a Derbyshire miner,
Who knew how to fight,
Braved the Champ O' the Midlands,
In a bare knuckle fight.

Yes, a Derbyshire miner,
Who knew how to fight,
'Cause the Champ O' the Midlands,
Was bested that night.

One terrible blow,
Then the bell had to sing,
For the Champ O' the Midlands,
Lay dead in the ring.

Yes, the Champ O' the Midlands,
Was dead in the sand.
From one 'lucky' punch.
From one bloody hand.

And the crowd shocked to silence,
And a miner in tears,
And I've never forgotten,
Though it's been seven years.

Now I've told you this story, Son
So you'll understand,
'Cause the miner who fought,
Is now holding your hand.

And I'm not proud at all,
Of what I have done,
'Cause the Champ O' the Midlands,
Was somebody's son."

Well, my father he waited,
And I looked at his hand,
And all I could hear,
Was the Colliery Band.

Yes, the miners' brass band
Were still playing that night,
But I no longer wanted,
The bare knuckle fight.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: RTim
Date: 15 Jun 12 - 06:49 PM

There is always - Young Taylor, Huzza - collected in Hampshire from George Blake
and sung by me on my CD -= George Blake's Legacy.

Tim Radford
http://www.forest-tracks.co.uk/folk_music_wavs/01%20Young%20Taylor,%20Huzza.mp3


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST
Date: 15 Jun 12 - 05:53 PM

a 80's rap song that referenced godzilla and the thriller in manilla anybody know?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,JOE
Date: 10 Apr 07 - 05:45 PM

Hello. I tried HBO. No luck there. The song A time for heroes Is not the song i am looking for. Thank you for trying. I am starting to believe that the song i am looking for "sweat and tears" was made just for HBO. If anyone has any old fight videos from the early to mid 1980's It should be on the very end of the tape.

                     Thanks again,
                         Joe


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: SouthernCelt
Date: 03 Apr 07 - 08:09 AM

Although the fighter is fictitious, "Tiger Tom Dixon" sung by Slaid Cleaves (and penned by Cleaves and one of his cohorts, can't remember his name)is a good catchy song about an unsanctioned, barroom fighter with a drinking problem.
SC


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 03 Apr 07 - 06:49 AM

Guest Joe, I have an idea - HBO's Boxing website has a Community you can join and post comments and questions and such. they also have an "Ask an Expertt" section. You might try asking over there. Follow this link:
HBO's Boxing Community Starting Page

Let us know what you find out! it will bug us too.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 03 Apr 07 - 06:14 AM

Guest Joe, could it be this one:

A Time For Heroes

We search for an answer
And when it appears
We can challenge the world
With our sweat and our tears

Through winning and losing
Oh, the brave never bend
And the hero keeps fighting
Standing tall in the end

And time can heal anything, it can mend any fall
It's the moment of truth that's facing us all
And it's time for the hero to stand tall

It's a time for heroes
Time to answer the call
It's a time for heroes
In us all

We carry the flame
For all to see
And the fire and the passion of what we can be

And sometimes we must fight
Oh, but we'll never, never bend
And the hero keeps fighting
Standing tall in the end

And love can change anything, it's inside of us all
To reach out a hand now, oh, whenever we fall
It's time for the hero to stand tall

It's a time for heroes
Time to answer the call
It's a time for heroes to stand tall (oh, oh, oh)

It's a time for heroes (oh, oh, oh, oh)
When our back's to the wall
It's a time for heroes in us all

It's a time for heroes (it's a time for heroes)
Deep inside of our soul (deep inside of our soul)
It's a time for heroes (it's a time for heroes)

It's a time for heroes
Time to answer the call
It's a time for heroes to stand tall (wo, oh, oh)

It's a time for heroes (oh, oh, oh, oh)
When our back's to the wall
It's a time for heroes

It's a time for heroes (it's a time for heroes)
It's a time for heroes (it's a time for heroes)
It's a time for heroes (it's a time for heroes)

A Time For Heroes
Meat Loaf, 1987. Brian plays Guitar. Original Version 5:03
Written by M. Scott Sotebeer, Jon Lyons and Rik Emmett.
Released in the USA only, backed with an instrumental version by Tangerine Dream.
This was the official theme music of the 1987 International Summer Special Olympic Games.
Also available on the Germany only CD 'Back Into Hell - The Very Best Of Meat Loaf, volume 2'


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,Joe
Date: 02 Apr 07 - 04:30 PM

Anybody have any idea where i can find the song "sweat and tears"?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: alanabit
Date: 30 Mar 07 - 07:14 PM

I recall seeing Simon and Hilary (also known as "Spreadthick"), doing a song about a Saucy bold robber and, I think, a jolly young sailor, although I can't be sure that I have described the combatants as the song did. It was a bit of a punch up, in which I think the sailor walloped the robber. I can't be sure though, as it has been a long time since I heard it. Maybe some Mudcatter knows it.


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Subject: Lyr/Chords Add: LES D'ARCY
From: GUEST,Soundcatcher
Date: 30 Mar 07 - 06:05 AM

Oops ! Don't know what happened there
I saw the reference to Les Darcy Earlier and thought you might like these lyrics.
Don't know if the chords will transfer accurately
Regards John

                        Les D'Arcy.
.
        C                        F        C                F        C        F                G
Roll up ! roll up ! and see the show, you local blokes let's see you go
        C                        F                C                        F                 Dm                G
A quid for a goer, two bob for a dud, it's a princely pay for sweat and blood.
                C                F        C                        F                C                F                G
Young Les was keen to have a go, "now watch him Les ! he'll hit you low"
        C                        F        C                F                                                G
The tent-show boy never saw it coming, Maitland's pride was off and running
.
                C                F                                        C        
He was running down to Sydney town, he was running down to try,
C                        F        C                        F                        G
Running down to make a name and listen to them cry.
.
¥        C        G                F                C        G        Am
¥        All I can wish for tonight is to see les D'Arcy fight.
¥        C        G                                F                        C        
¥        How they cheered him, they clapped him & they cheered him
¥        F        G                F
¥        Every Saturday night
.
        C                        F        C                F        C        F                G
So he hung around the stadium door, they let him in to sweep the floor,
        C                        F        C        F                         Dm                G
He saw them spar, the best they'd got, he knew that he could beat the lot
        C                        F        C                F        C                F                G
Three rounds to start and then a main, he never swept that floor again,
        C                        F        C        F                                G
For he beat them all inside the bell, soon he heard the people yell.
.
        C                                F        C                F                C        F        G
They rolled up in regiments for every fight, they made Les Darcy King for a night
        C                        F        C                F                                         Dm        G
But then he refused to kill in our name, the press they called him a national shame.
        C                        F        C                F        C        F                G
He stowed away for the land of the free, he died alone across the sea
        C                        F        C        F                                                G
In a flag-drap'd coffin they sent 'im 'ome, he sat on our guilt like a champion's throne
.
        C                        F                C
He was going down to Tennessee, he was going down to die,
                                        F        C                F                                        G
If we'd known that we would break your heart, you would have heard Australia cry.
.
                                Final Chorus.
C                G                F        C        G        Am
All I can wish for tonight, is to see Les D'Arcy fight,
C                G                        F                        C        
How they cheered him, they clapped him and they cheered him
F        G                F
Every Saturday night
        G                F                G        F        C
Every Saturday night, every Saturday night.


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Subject: Lyr Add: ANOTHER STAR ASCENDING (Ralph McTell)
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 05:45 PM

By the brilliant Ralph McTell:-

ANOTHER STAR ASCENDING (The Boxer)
If I'd been born a street away, another star ascending
I'd have been a fighter, a boxer in the ring
And I salute the boxer if he lose or if he win
Not the cigar-ash, splashed fat men
Who sit around the ring.

I want water in the bottle not brandy in the glass
Bruised and battered maybe but a fighter to the last
So I salute the boxer if he lose or if he win
Not the cigar-ash splashed fat men
Who sit around the ring.

And I have watched the fighters since I was just a kid
From their struggle through the ghettos to their championship bids
And it ain't just for the money that a guy gets cut and bruised
Or to please the ringside fat men
And to keep them all amused.

No boxer started out rich and I hate when they complain
They're calling it blood money they talk of damage to the brain
But the poor do not want charity they only want their pride
Better go down fighting than accept the back seat ride.

I'm gonna miss Muhammed when he takes his final bow
May he go out with his fist high and ignore the screaming crowd,
Ignore the compliments of fat men who behind their cigars hid
And keep the sense of pride he gave to every ghetto kid.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,soundcatcher
Date: 28 Mar 07 - 10:23 PM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Peace
Date: 27 Mar 07 - 11:10 PM

"Who Killed Davey Moore?" by Bob Dylan


Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?

"Not I," says the referee,
"Don't point your finger at me.
I could've stopped it in the eighth
An' maybe kept him from his fate,
But the crowd would've booed, I'm sure,
At not gettin' their money's worth.
It's too bad he had to go,
But there was a pressure on me too, you know.
It wasn't me that made him fall.
No, you can't blame me at all."

Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?

"Not us," says the angry crowd,
Whose screams filled the arena loud.
"It's too bad he died that night
But we just like to see a fight.
We didn't mean for him t' meet his death,
We just meant to see some sweat,
There ain't nothing wrong in that.
It wasn't us that made him fall.
No, you can't blame us at all."

Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?

"Not me," says his manager,
Puffing on a big cigar.
"It's hard to say, it's hard to tell,
I always thought that he was well.
It's too bad for his wife an' kids he's dead,
But if he was sick, he should've said.
It wasn't me that made him fall.
No, you can't blame me at all."

Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?


"Not me," says the gambling man,
With his ticket stub still in his hand.
"It wasn't me that knocked him down,
My hands never touched him none.
I didn't commit no ugly sin,
Anyway, I put money on him to win.
It wasn't me that made him fall.
No, you can't blame me at all."

Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?

"Not me," says the boxing writer,
Pounding print on his old typewriter,
Sayin', "Boxing ain't to blame,
There's just as much danger in a football game."
Sayin', "Fist fighting is here to stay,
It's just the old American way.
It wasn't me that made him fall.
No, you can't blame me at all."

Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?

"Not me," says the man whose fists
Laid him low in a cloud of mist,
Who came here from Cuba's door
Where boxing ain't allowed no more.
"I hit him, yes, it's true,
But that's what I am paid to do.
Don't say 'murder,' don't say 'kill.'
It was destiny, it was God's will."

Who killed Davey Moore,
Why an' what's the reason for?


Pete Seeger did an awesome version of it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 27 Mar 07 - 11:04 PM

Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads has 113 songs about prizefighting (eliminating duplicates, maybe half that many).

I think this link will give you a list of them; if not, go to the first link and put "prizefighting" in the search box and select "3 Subjects" as your index.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,Joe
Date: 24 Mar 07 - 11:22 AM

Does anyone have the song "sweat and tears"? It was a song played at the closing of Hbo world championship boxing in the early to mid 1980's. It was performed by a female. I have no idea who she is. I believe the lyrics went something like this. "With your sweat and tears,winning and losing you put in the years. with your sweat and tears". If anyone can locate this song for me please let me know.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,Maurice Curtin
Date: 30 Jan 06 - 02:30 PM

The song is on HMV Long Play CLP 1327, A Jug of Punch, Broadside ballads Old & new sung by British folk singers recorded by Steve Benbow, (Guitar), Perry Friedman, (Banjo), & Vic Pitt (Bass. I'm still trying to work out how Samus Ennis, who plays tin whistle on the record, could be regarded a "British". The old colonial instinct dies hard!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,Allen
Date: 11 May 05 - 07:20 AM

There is a more than decent novel about Tom Molineaux.
It's called "Black Ajax", George macDonald Fraser is the author and it's done through 'interviews' with those who knew him.
Pretty powerful stuff.


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Subject: Lyr Add: JOHN O'REILLEY
From: Terry Allan Hall
Date: 10 May 05 - 06:50 PM

I'm not sure if this is an "authentic" Irish tune or a "manufactured" (to sound like an) Irish tune, but it's definitely a song about boxing:

JOHN O'REILLEY

My name is John O'Reilly,and my father worked the fields
in the hills of ol'Kilarney,where I helped him turn the wheels
My arms grew hard as iron for a boy of 17
and I used my fists for gamblin' in those old Kilarney streets

Well,the ship left for America,I got my pack aboard
Said farewell to my dear Ireland,said a prayer to my dear Lord
I fought those sorry guineas in the kitchens they call Hell
I fought'em for their dollar and those guineas paid me well!

CHORUS:
Fare the well,fair Dover,
fare thee well your seasons turn-
for my pockets will be jinglin' on the day of my return,
the day of my return...

Well,I fought in New York City,and I fought the Jersey shore
My gut stayed full o' whiskey and my bed stayed full o' whores
My right they called a cannonball,my left they called the same
and I left 'em all there lyin' half in blood and half in shame.

I met a man on '32 and he stuck out his hand/
He offered me a thousand if I'd fall before his man
I said it could be done,but only for another two
He smiled at me and nodded as I tucked it in my shoe.

I let the bell ring twice before I'd let him have my nose
and I let him work my left until my eye was swollen closed,
then I let lose a peltin' they still talk about today
That guinea didn't know that I had bet the other way.

They colored ev'ry port from here clear to the coast
lookin for the double-crosser that had turned into a ghost
But I was on a train.my freind,and rode the other way
I'll sail from California back to Dublin one fine day!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: GUEST,simonb
Date: 10 May 05 - 05:29 PM

Try Molineux by John Connelly
Havn,t got the lyrics, if you can find them, it is a historical song, relating to the then (19th century all England prize fighting champion,Tom Cribb,who was almost beaten by Molleneux,an ex slave, an absolute scandal at the time, Let me know how you get on


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 10 May 05 - 02:42 PM

I'm sitting here listening to the new Springsteen CD, DEVILS AND DUST and what do I hear but a song about a bare-knuckles boxer called "The Hitter"! I was prepared to hate this CD actually, but it won me over on the first run-through. It's remarkbaly different from NEBRAKSA and GHOST OF TOM JOAD. It makes nice use of some unsual arrangements for him.

'The Hitter' is a painfully brutal story of a bare-knuckles fighter who is passing through his hometown and talking to his mother through her door and explaining what he's been up to in the years since he left town. I'll get around to posting the lyrics some day soon.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MORRISSEY AND THE BENICIA BOY
From: Frank Maher
Date: 26 Apr 05 - 09:04 AM

MORRISSEY AND THE BENICIA BOY

Ye undaunted sons of Ireland, I pray attend a while,
To those few lines that I have penned down, they will cause you for to smile,
Concerning a great battle fought on Columbia's shore
By the Benicia Boy and Morrissey, that came from Templemore.

The Benicia Boy a challenge sent our hero out of hand,
And said, no man from Ireland before him there could stand,
Our hero smiled and then replied: "I'll meet you on the plain,
And for Paddy's land I mean to stand the laurels to maintain."

Five and twenty hundred dollars the prize it was to be,
Long Island be appointed in North America;
Both small and great from every State in multitude had ran,
The American's thought their champion would kill our Irishman.

When the two gallant champions stripped and stepped into the ring,
Some time they parried each other's blows with many a nimble spring;
The Benicia Boy drew first blood and that knocked our hero down,
And in the second round they both came to the ground.

The third and fourth the Yank was floored by Morrissey, it appears,
The fifth brave Morrissey went down amidst the Yankee cheers;
The boldly offered ten to one bright dollars on the ground,
While the Irish independently they took the bets all 'round.

Up to the tenth by Morrissey the Yankee he down he went,
The know-nothings all shook their heads, feeling sorely discontent;
They shouted to the Benicia Boy, Exert your skill they cried,
For our country's credit our cash on you we have relied.

"Twas then our spoke brave Morrissey, his voice being loud and high,
For Paddy's land I mean to stand, to conquer or to die;
Na-bock-lish then all brags you made, I mean to let you know
That an Irish cock is still true game wherever he does go.

The eleventh round decided all, the Yank was forced to yield,
With courage bold undaunted our hero stood the field;
The Benicia Boy they bore away, he was scarcely fit to stand,
While Morrissey he cleared the ropes and cheered for Paddy's land.

The Americans may no longer boast , nor Paddy's sons degrade,
For now they must surrender to our gallant Irish blade;
With honor now he wears the belt, and the Yankees may deplore
The day they challenged Morrissey, that came from Templemore.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 10:44 PM

Big Mal.. please, don't hang back!   It's no matter if you missed a reference to a ssong. This thread has been so hlepful to me - almost too helpful. I keep coming up with more and more to say.

What I am really in need of at present are some reactions to the songs that mention real fighters or fights from people who either saw the metnioned bouts or upon whom the bouts made a big imression.

Do any of you feel the songs got it 'wrong' or or that the fighters referenced are ill-served by the songs about them?

Do the songs accurately reflect community opinion of the bouts and fighters?

Or, do they perpetuate myths and misunderstandings?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Malc R
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 02:44 PM

Ignor the post above, Just the ramblings of a cerebrally challenged old moggy, should have checked DT first, it is the same song.

Mal :o|


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Malc R
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 02:37 PM

The Titanic Song by Huddie Leadbetter refers to Jack Johnson

is this the same as the post above?

Mal


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Malc R
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 02:19 PM

I have a 3 CD compilation album "The Folk Box" one track is The Boxing Match sung by Black Country Three It is listed as Trad. arr by Jon & Michael Raven

Pulse label
1995 Kas Records
PBX CD 513/3
Track 16


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: goodbar
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 12:19 AM

the pubcrawlers - 'the irish combine'


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about boxing or prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 10:12 PM

I realize I neglected to include the references or lyrics to the many songs about Sonny Liston. He ranks way up in the top 5 of most frequently mentioned fighters when it comes to song lyrics.

Perhaps the most famous of which is:

The Ballad of Sonny Liston
By Phil Ochs

Now I don't know how Sonny Liston died
Maybe he killed himself, maybe he even tried
Or maybe the boys weren't satisfied
I don't know, I'm sorry I just don't know

Sonny, Sonny Sonny, why'd you have to take a dive
If you don't then you won't stay alive...



Mark Knopfler's 'Song For Sonny Liston' is really a great example of the kind of song I was looking for. It talks about his life, his fighs and his tragic end in heroin addiction.
Song For Sonny Liston - Full Lyric HERE



Guided By Voices has a song called 'The Sonny Liston Fan club - that doesn't even mention him by name.
Lyrics to Sonny Liston Fan Club HERE

Sun Kil Moon's CD - Ghosts of the Great Highway - has a song, 'Glen Tipton' which mentions Cassius Clay and Sonny Liston.
Full Lyric HERE


Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds have a song, "Babe, I'm On Fire" which also mentions Liston:

The mild little Christian says it
The wild Sonny Liston says it
The pimp and the gimp
And the guy with the limp says
Babe, I'm on fire
Babe, I'm on fire

Full Lyric to 'baby I'm On Fire' HERE


Billy Joel mentions Liston beating Patterson in his song "We didn't Start The Fire'
For a discussion of that song and the history it mentions, go HERE:

There are also about a dozen rap or Pop references to liston that mention him in a line or two. Too many to list.

The Knopfler song is very interesting, perhaps the best of the bunch.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 04:27 PM

>>Ring of Fire: The Emile Griffith Story is a new documentary dealing with the death of Benny "Kid" Paret at the hands of Griffith during their middleweight boxing championship in 1962.

Griffith's bout with then-champion Paret, a 24-year-old Cuban exile, was broadcast on national television. Paret suffered a final pummeling by Griffith that led to his being carried out of Madison Square Garden on a stretcher. He died 10 days later.<<

Now if I could find a SONG about THAT fatal bout, that would be very interesting indeed. References to Ring fatalities can sometimes be found in songs, but not always as the subject of the song.

For example, in the song that got me started down this road, 'Boom Boom Mancini,' the song isn't actually about the Du Koo Kim/Mancini fight. It's about the Mancini/Chacon fight. Du Koo Kim's death is mentioned in the bridge as a way of heightening the sense of risk and danger that accompanies any fight, but especially the fight being sung about. In the lyrics, the fight has yet to take place and it's all about the ancitipation of seeing Ray Mancini fight again after that last, fatal bout with Kim.

Hurry home early
Hurry on home
Boom Boom Mancini's fighting Bobby Chacon



I turned in my first draft and I was sent back to rework the article a bit. My editor wants a little more to be said about whether these songs have any meaning to people who either saw the fights referenced or perhaps may only know of the fights referenced as a result of hearing stories and/or the songs about them.

I am trying to make Boom Boom Mancini the song I start and end with because I actually saw that fight myself and the song has always struck me as powerful. I consider it a fine example of Folk even if 'Folk' doesn't exactly spring to the mind when one hears Warren Zevon's name. I always felt he was primarily a folk artist in terms of his topics and that it was the rest of the world insisting he was a rock star. Just look at 'Roland The Headless Thompson Gunner' and you may agree with me.

Did anybody here SEE either the Chacon/Mancini fight or the Kim/Mancini fight? How about any of the others that have been mentioned? Surely a number of Mudcatters have seen the referenced Ali fights and/or the Sugar Ray Leonard/Roberto Duran fights I and II! Maybe some of you are old enough or have been reincarnated enough times to have even seen some of the ones the Trad songs refer to!

I'd be interested in hearing if anyone had.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: GUEST,kendall
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 06:48 AM

Ed Trickett recorded one on Folk Legacy called "People Like you".

"Old fighter you sure took it on the chin,
Thought you never had the strength to stand
Never giving up or giving in,
You know I just want to shake your hand
And say that people like you help people like me go on"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: open mike
Date: 20 Apr 05 - 10:40 PM

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4603489
i just saw this reference to an NPR story about a fatal fight
or rather a fighter who was carried out of the ring on a stretcher
and died 10 days after the fight. Perhaps they will have some music
in the sound track. Ring of Fire was bradcast last sat. April 16.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: GUEST,The Thing
Date: 13 Apr 05 - 11:28 PM

I seem to remember a single around 1962 called "I am the greatest" by Cassius Clay - am I dreaming, or did it happen?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: GUEST,DannyC
Date: 13 Apr 05 - 10:30 PM

For those in the US - my cousin Jimmy is apparantly featured in this scheduled Broadcast (see below).   In his prime, along with a string of bouts in and around Philly, Jimmy had amateur bouts in Belfast, Newry and Dundalk, Ireland. Now he's into coaching and referee work. There's been so much boxing discussion here, I thought I'd post his note:

<< ESPN2 has a new sports documentary called "Timeless". They spent 3 days here filming and interviewing for our annual Brigade Boxing
Championships. The story is on this Saturday at 11:30 am on ESPN2 and
gets replayed Sunday at 5:00 am on regular ESPN... Seamus might be on as well. It could be on at different times out west.

BTW, we won the NCBA Championships this year the first weekend in
April.

http://espn.go.com/eoe/timeless/index.html >>


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 13 Apr 05 - 02:52 PM

Wow. That's one I hadn't seen before. Many thanks to you Barrie Roberts!

I have a great deal to work with now, probably more than I can actually use, but I would still love to see any other songs any Mudcatters choose to dig up and put in this thread. I am still especially interested in the songs which refer to actual historical persons and/or fights. They do not have to be Trad. The modern songs are every bit as exemplary of the types of boxing/Prize-Fighting songs I am discussing.

We've come a long way from The Russian Sailor, The Contender and Boom Boom Mancini! I am, as usual, in debt to the wonderful mudcatters who gave me aid.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE BALLAD OF LES DARCY
From: GUEST,Barrie Roberts
Date: 10 Apr 05 - 07:12 PM

Then there's 'THE BALLAD OF LES DARCY'. LD was an Aussie, who allegedly removed himself to the USA to avoid the call-up for WWI. He died after a fight in Memphis and legend says that the Us autopsy said natural causes but the Australian one said poison.

In Maitand Cemetery
Lies poor Les Darcy,
Australia's bonny boy,
His mother's pride and joy.
Oh the Yanks called him a skiter,
But he proved himself a fighter,
So they killed him, yes they killed him,
Down in Memphis, Tennessee.

THe critics by the score,
Said they had never saw
A boy like Les before
Upon the stadium floor.
All I think of each night
Is to see Les Darcy fight,
How he beats'em, simply eats 'em
Every Saturday night.

Repeat first verse.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: GUEST
Date: 10 Apr 05 - 06:37 PM

Has anyone read George MacDonald Fraser's Black Ajax? it's a really good tale of a black prizefighter in Regency Britain.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 09 Apr 05 - 10:32 PM

Michaelr states:
>>The violence is no more real than in a movie, and therefore cannot be compared to that which occurs in a boxing match.<<

I suppose! Didn't Hitman Hart's brother die in a wrestling stunt gone terribly wrong?


I've participated in some local Semi-Pro Wrestling matches as a "Manager" and I've gotta say.... not for the faint of heart! Even staged violence goes horribly awry.

Just ask this guy named Bubba who I once clocked with my High Heel shoe in a match. I thought I put his eye out! We had rehearsed it several times and it still made a sick sound when I let him have it. He had me jump on his back and whilst spinning me around, I was supposed to 'mock' smack him upside the head with it. Well, I got scared being twirled around by a 250 lb behemoth and I bashed his brains out. Ah my wild youth. That was maybe 9 years ago.

What I object to about wrestling the most is the planned blood-letting. I learned an awful lot about the myriad ways wrestlers conceal small blades so at the planned moment they can either cut themselves or their opponent. It's all agreed upon in advance. Once, a guy I was dating permitted himself to be cut on cue and the other guy accidentally nicked an artery. Yikes. That pretty much ended my involvement with the wrestler AND wrestling. It's not just that accidents like that can happen - any deliberate blood play is such a stupid idea.

The more I research the boxing songs and the more I think about my own life, the more appalled I am by my own involvement in 'gladiator sports.'

Back to the subject of this Thread:

The thing that I am finding now is that Rap has co-opted the names of famous boxers and their stories to represent various values in their music. Mentioning Roberto Duran means one thing, usually bad, mentioning Jack Dempsey is good, invoking Ali, even better! I have tripped across a couple hundred Rap references to historical boxers. I only listed a few typical examples in this thread.

I should also mention I found the name of a song but not the Lyric by a Singer named Paul Thorn who actually FOUGHT Roberto Duran in 1987 before becoming a singer/songwriter. it's called 'I'd rather be a Hammer than a Nail" in an abvious reference to Paul SImon's 'El Condor Paso' I'd love to have those lyrics. They guy lasted 7 rounds against Duran which means he's not some guy with whom you'd wanna start a Bar Fight!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: michaelr
Date: 09 Apr 05 - 12:52 PM

Yes, I meant WWF, not WWW... LOL!

Barbara Boxer is my state's senator, and I happen to have a lot more respect for her than for Rice, so I won't be singing that song... but I'll admit it's clever.

I think you are right that pro wrestling has replaced boxing as the main gladiator-style entertainment. The big difference, of course, is that it's fake. The violence is no more real than in a movie, and therefore cannot be compared to that which occurs in a boxing match.

Cheers,
Michael


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 09 Apr 05 - 01:26 AM

I recently came across this parody of Paul Simon's The Boxer on this site:

www.freerepublic.com thread with this song parody

For people that are adverse to Blickified links.. I'm gonna post the lyrics cuz they're funny - not as funny as if a Mudcatter had done it, but beggars can't be choosers! It does make reference to Roberto Duran's famous "NO MAS" statement in the second bout with Sugar Ray Leonard so it does belong in this thread.



DFU SONG: The Boxer (Condi chews up and spits out Barbara Boxer)
(To The Tune of The Boxer)
DFU SONGS | 1-2005 | Lyrics, Doug from Upland


Her name's Barbara Boxer...she's a whiny little witch
Yes, I didn't use a "b" there
It is really only Hillary I call a *****

I do declare
After seeing her on C-SPAN
I could pull out all her hair...frizzy hair
Gray, lifeless hair

She was jumping all over Condi Rice
One of freedom's greatest lights
Condi taught her a great lesson
You don't bring a knife when it is time for your gunfight
Your gunfight
Condi shot her like a tin can...and then she turned off her light
It was fun to see her turn off Boxer's light

See her whine...Barbara Boxer likes to whine
See her whine...it's so funny on TV when we watch her whine

So the pest kept on attacking...she's a woman with no clue
It was so annoying
Boxer saw those steely eyes that told her "I'll get you"
I will get you
You'll regret all this showboating by the time this hearing's through
By the time this hearing's through

(musical break)

See her whine...Barbara Boxer likes to whine
See her whine...it's so funny on TV when we watch her whine

Out of her Condi made mincemeat
It was something to behold...to behold
It's a great one for the archives...it is solid gold
Boxer's now...not so bold

DemocRATS rushed to her side and gave to her some smelling salts
And George Bush, of course, is at fault
'Cause Condi had picked her up and threw her on the mat
And broke her like a very fragile vase (väz)
Like Roberto or a Frenchie she cried out "Oh, please no mas...please no mas"

See her whine...Barbara Boxer likes to whine
See her whine...it's so funny on TV when we watch her whine

See her whine...Barbara Boxer likes to whine
See her whine...it's so funny on TV when we watch her whine

SNIPPED.......The writer repeats this phrase a bunch more times cuz he is obviously enamoured of his own talents at parodying folk songs......

Not a bad little effort if I do say so myself. Worthy of being included on The Mudcat!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: GUEST,Dave'sWife at work
Date: 08 Apr 05 - 08:58 PM

The reference to the Black on White Prize fights reminded me of something...

When I was looking up Lyrical references to Jack Dempsey.. I found DOZENS of references to Dempsey by Black Rappers. Here are a couple for you just as an example:

Craig Mack - Real raw
A line referring to "The thriller in Mailla fight":
"MC's I'm a thriller, from here to Manilla"
and.. a line referring to Dack Dempsey
"I'm death to an MC, below like Jack Dempsey
A shark feedin frenzy, on those that tempt me"

Full Lyric HERE

Artist: Das EFX
Song: 'Real Hip Hop Lyrics'
"I throw a screwball and strike out the MC
and if he temps me
I knock em out like Jack Dempsey
I burn some sensi and chase em wit the Guiness
The illest..hit me wit the hook because I'm finished"

Another Rap Jack Demspey reference in Notirgious B.I.G's Mister C:
"Jack Dempsey will start shaking
All it's taking, is some marijuana and I'm making"
Go HERE for full Lyric

The one reference to Demspey most Folkies know is:
MY BROTHER SYLVESTE ( about the Jeffrey/Dempsey Fight) in The Digitrad:

Here's the one Open Thread about that song:

Lyr Add: BIG STRONG MAN / SYLVEST


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE EYES OF ROBERTO DURAN (Tom Russell)
From: GUEST,Dave'sWife at Work
Date: 08 Apr 05 - 08:27 PM

Here are some references to Roberto Duran in song:


Missy Elliot's 'One Minute Man' mentiones Roberto Duran in a give and take bwteen Missy and JayZ:
[Jay-Z]
Fifty grand I get this on one take (Hova)
Look, I'm not tryin to give you love and affection (uh-huh)
I'm tryin to give you sixty seconds of perfection (uh-huh)
I'm tryin to give you cabfare and directions
Get your +Independent+ ass out of here - QUESTION?
I'm not your man, not Ralph Tresvant
Not Ronnie Romance.. no ma
I'm tryin to hit you then put you in the middle of the round
like I'm Roberto Duran.. no mas


Click HERE for the Full Lyric


And..


Here are the Lyrics and chords to 'The Eyes of Roberto Duran' it's an interesting reference since one has to know who Roberto Duran is to get the meaning the lyrics imply.


THE EYES OF ROBERTO DURAN
=========================
by: Tom Russell
written by: Tom Russell - Frontera Music

D G A D G A

Verse 1:

D                        G       A
Has anybody here seen Roberto Duran?
D                      G         A
I met him once yeah I shook his hand
   Em                   G          A
I looked in his eyes and now I understand
    Em                        A                  D G A D
The love and the anger in the eyes of Roberto Duran


Verse 2:

D                           G       A      
Has anybody here seen that Mexican girl?
    D                              G          A
She lives up on Third street in her own little world
Em                           G                   A
A saint in the window with the rosary beads in her hand
          Em                      A                   D G A D
With the smile of an angel and the eyes of Roberto Duran


Chorus:

Bm                  A
Panama City, it's three in the morning
         G                A         Bm
They're talkin' 'bout the hands of stone
G                      D
New York City, Lord the sun's coming up
   C                              A
My lady's throwing everything she owns


Verse 3:

D                         G       A
Has anybody here seen the woman I love
       D                         G             A      
She'll fight down and dirty when push comes to shove
       Em                     G                      A
She'll win every round if the fight goes according to plan
         Em                        A                  D G A D
With the smile of an angel and the eyes of Roberto Duran


Solo (play through one verse)
Repeat Chorus:
Repeat Verse 1:
D G A D G A D G A D
From the album: The Long Way Around 1997 Hightone Records
Transcribed by Greg Yuriy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: open mike
Date: 08 Apr 05 - 08:21 PM

wht michaelr said.
perhaps this collection of songs
can have an educational element
to show the violent nature of
this "sport" I think you mean
WWF. michael, although the WWW
has it's share of (pardon my
ethnic slur to any of the
wandering tribes of Vandals,
Goths, Huns, Etc.) Barbarian
(barbaric) element.

I also wonder about the racist
part of this--pitting fighters
from one minority against another
minority --

I once worked with disabled students
and saw a couple of them who were
influenced in a very destructive way
by watching these fighting characters--
the costumed ones that are mostly actors.
these students worshipped the "fighters"
and mimiced their actions...and there
were some injuries and dangerous situations
which occurred due to their actions.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Songs about Boxing or Prizefighting
From: GUEST,Dave'sWife at Work
Date: 08 Apr 05 - 08:13 PM

Michaelr - I am presently inclined to agree with you completely! That I was raised to accept the Sport as an appropriate test of Manhood notwithstanding. Any childish ideas I might have still had about the Sport having once been more genteel have surely been dispelled by my current research. Tyson's ear-bite seen round the world did shock many people such as myself into our senses. Boxing hasn't really recovered from that.

I don't know if you are a UK Mudcatter or an American, but to many Americans, especially "ethnic" Americans, Boxing remains and important part of their culture. I could bend your ear about how excited the NYC Irish Community was about Gerry Cooney's prospects as well as how I witnessed the Latino adulation of Oscar De La Hoya but it's all been said before more eloquently if not on Mudcat then at least in mainstream Sports literature.

Still, hearing a song like 'Boom Boom Mancini' immediately transports me back to the late 70's and early 80's when certain neighborhoods in NYC really did shut down to watch a particular fight. Zevon's Lyric.. "Hurry home early, Hurry on Home, Boom Mancini's fighting Bobby Cahcon" captures that feeling EXACTLY! This of couse was when Boxing was still a Network TV phenomenon and before Pay TV marginalized its appeal away from the "Lower Classes" and towards folks who could afford to pay $49.95 to see ONE fight. (or one set of cards as the case may be)

I think that for a time Pro Wrestling took over the place that Boxing used to occupy in "minority" lives. I should be clear that I considered my upbringing in working-class Irish NYC to be a "minority" upbringing as well so I'm not speaking from outside of a 'class.' People can argue all day over whether or not the Irish are still a 'minority' considering how many million Americans there are with a drop of Irish blood or a vestigal Irish name. That's not what I am trying to say. When I grew up, to be Catholic and to be Irish-working-class was still to be considered 'other". That's all. In fact, it still pretty much is in the neighborhoods where branches of my family still live. But, that's a whole nuther can of worms...

As I was saying..... Pro wrestling seemed to have taken over that slot but that has faded as well. In California Mexican Wrestling is still very popular but more as a fringe sport than a mainstream for of entertainment. I believe all it will take is the rise of another very talented boxer to bring back boxing's traditional audiences.

The songs we have mentioned do explore the brutality of the sport but just as many celebrate the participants as 'brave young men', 'champions' 'bold contenders' and such. Without getting overly historical, I would suggest that we view boxers with the same admirations and disgust as Roman-era audiences viewed gladiators with the big difference being that Boxers are usually nowadays, quite well paid!

The songs about Ali are interesting from a sociopolitical perspective. They celebrate his minorioty status, his Draft resistance, his superior physical prowess, all as fine examples to his 'race'. I plan to talk about the evolution of songs about individual boxers from merely commemorating a thrilling bout for the ages to statements about the ascendency of minority fighters.

Any thoughts you have on the subject Michaelr, I'd be eager to hear!


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Mudcat time: 27 September 11:48 PM EDT

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