To Thread - Forum Home

The Mudcat Café TM
13 messages

Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)

12 Feb 01 - 11:17 AM (#396302)
Subject: Reenlistment Blues by Merle Travis
From: jeepman (inactive)

Merle Travis sung and picked this in "From Here To Eternity". I believe he also wrote it.

Would somone provide me with the lyrics? I want to learn this old song. Jeepman

12 Feb 01 - 03:26 PM (#396536)
From: Quincy

Is this it Jeepman? It says that it was written by J. Jones and sang by Don Johnson.

The Re-Enlistment Blues

The following is from From Here to Eternity:

Got paid out on Monday
Not a dog soldier no more
They gimme all that money
So much my pockets is sore
More thought than I can use. Re-enlistment Blues.

Took my ghelt to town on Tuesday
Got a room and a big double bed
Find a job tomorrow
Tonight you may be dead
Aint no time to lose. Re-enlistment Blues.

Hit the bars on Wednesday
I found me some friends on my own
I found a pretty baby
She would leave me alone – No, my head took a dare
I looked down at my trousers
All my pockets was bare – No, my pockets was bare
That gal had blown my fuse – Re-enlistments Blues.

Went back around on Friday
Asked for a free glass of beer
My friends had disappeared
Barman said: Take off, you queer!
What I done ain't news – Re-enlistment Blues.

That jail was cold all Sa'day
Standing up on a bench looking down
Through them bars I watched the people
All happy and out on the town
Looked like time for me to choose – Re-enlistment Blues.

Slept in the park that Sunday
Seen all the folks going to church
Your belly feels so empty
When you're left in the lurch
Those soldiers don't own pews – Re-enlistment Blues.

So I re-upped on Monday
A little sad and sick at my heart
All my fine plans was with the money
In the poke of a scheming tart
Guy always seems to lose – Re-enlistment Blues.

So you short-times, let me tell you
Don't get yourself thrown in the can
You might as well be dead
Or a thirty-year-man
Recruiting crews gives me the blues – Old Re-enlistment Blues.

From the TV series From Here To Eternity (Wednesday, Thursday and Sa'day sang by Don Johnson in the series episodes Pearl Harbour 1 and 2)

regards, Yvonne

12 Feb 01 - 04:34 PM (#396599)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues by Merle T
From: jeepman (inactive)

Yvonne,that is the song. However, Don Johnson may have done it it a tv show, but the original was Ol Merle Travis in 1953, "From Here to Eternity" Jeepman

12 Feb 01 - 08:57 PM (#396773)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues by Merle T
From: Irish sergeant

Travis did it in the movie. Man, that is a great flick and the book by James Jones is excellent also! You're righth, Jeepman. It's a wicked fine song. Kindest reguatds, Neil

22 Feb 08 - 08:23 AM (#2269423)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)
From: GUEST,Writer of the song

He did not write it my Grandfather and two of his buddies wrote the song - never had it copywrited so never got the deserved credit.

22 Feb 08 - 08:48 AM (#2269447)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Trav
From: wordfella

Nit-picking: Line 5 should read "More dough than I can use..."

24 Feb 08 - 04:52 PM (#2271276)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)
From: Jim Dixon

ASCAP says REENLISTMENT BLUES was written by James Jones, Frederick Maxwell Karger, and Robert Wells. lists recordings by Jorma Kaukonen, Buddy Morrow, Jim Murphy, and Merle Travis.

25 Feb 08 - 01:46 PM (#2272013)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)

not nit picking - and yes ASCAP says that who wrote it - but my grandfather was in pearl harbor when the song was wrote and came back from war with other things on his mind - therefore never got the song copywrited.

26 Dec 08 - 05:47 PM (#2525181)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)
From: GUEST,Dispatcher

Can any one give me the chords that re-enlistment blues was recorded in the movie from here to eternity. It was done twice in the movie in Schoefield barracks and again outside the bar I believe it was called Chewies just before Frank Sinatra has his death scene.

27 Dec 08 - 01:39 PM (#2525644)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)
From: fumblefingers

I have the merle travis version on mp3. if you send me a p.m.with your email address, I'll send it to you.

27 Dec 08 - 02:04 PM (#2525662)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)
From: Gene

Don't forget about COWPIE for Lyrics & Chords to old songs...


10 Apr 11 - 12:53 PM (#3132490)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Reenlistment Blues (Merle Travis)
From: GUEST,ippy65

From what I read, the lyrics were written by the author of the book,"From Here to ETernity," James Jones. zin the movie version the raunchy words were softened, so for ex.: "Chinese baby" became "pretty baby," and so on. It still helped to make the movie as authentic, and shocking, as it was in 1953. Frank Sinatra, Donna Reed, Monty Clift, Burt Lancaster ... and the story of Pearl Harbor.

Everyone who sings changes the words a bit but it still is an amazing Army song. I've looked all over U-Tube and elsewhere and this is only recording from the movie that has all the words. Since I'm going to sing it Wednesday night (and me a girl and all) I'm mighty grateful!

11 Apr 11 - 10:03 PM (#3133412)
Subject: Lyr Add: RE-ENLISTMENT BLUES (Merle Travis)
From: Jim Dixon

This complete song can be heard at YouTube:

As recorded by Merle Travis

1. My hitch was up Monday. I ain't a dog soldier no more.
I ain't a soldier no more.
They gi' me all that money, so much my pockets was sore.
My pockets was sore.
More dough than I can use.
Re-enlistment blues.

2. Took my dough to town Tuesday, found me a big feather bed,
Found a big double bed.
I will find a job tomorrow. Tonight I'll sleep like I'm dead.
Gonna sleep like I'm dead,
And get up when I choose.
Re-enlistment blues.

3. Well, I hit the bars Wednesday, made me some friends on my own,
Lot o' friends on my own.
Found a pretty baby. She wouldn't leave me alone,
Wouldn't leave me alone.
She kept me buyin' booze,
Re-enlistment blues.


4. Went back around Thursday, asked for a free glass o' beer.
I said, "Gi' me one little beer."
But that gal forgot to know me. She just said, "No credit here.
No credit here."
Did I give her a bruise?
Re-enlistment blues.

5. That jail was cold Saturday, just like the people in town,
All the people in town.
They ain't got time to know ye, just time to pull you way down.
They'll pull you way down.
Just one thing left to choose:
Re-enlistment blues.

6. Short-timers, let me tell ye: don't you get throwed in the can.
Don't get throwed in the can.
You might as well be dead, or be a thirty-year man,
Be a thirty-year man.
They always seem to lose
Re-enlistment blues.

Recruitin' crews gi' me the blues,
Re-enlistment blues.

YouTube also has two scenes from the film "From Here to Eternity"

This scene, in a barracks, has only the first verse, as above.

This outdoor scene has verses 2-3 as above, plus this different "Thursday" verse:

I had the mizzes(?*) Thursday. The walls was movin' I swear.
They's movin' I swear.
I reached down in my trousers, an' all my pockets was bare.
That gal was sure bad news.
Re-enlistment blues.

* I assume this is short for "miseries," i.e. a hangover.