Where are the Songs
Shadow of Dylan

Fretted Bass Dulcimer, harmonica
& vocals -David Beede

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I wrote this in 2004. It is is a "meta protest" song that ponders why there weren't more protest songs while our nation was being carried off to hell in a hand-basket by the Bush administration...? In performance it's a call and response chorus. This version was recorded at WUFT public radio by Bill Beckett in Gainesville FL.  It's the long version. Since I've removed the middle section about religion to hopefully become another song some day.

Lyrics here:

Where are the Songs   [formerly Shadow of Dylan…]                   

World War II - Korea and ‘Nam
9/11 -Afghanistan the Taliban
preemptive strike on Iraq and Saddam
Life seemed simpler just fearing the bomb…

Hippies and poets are still seen as kooks
While the government’s designing tactical nukes
Listening in on all our calls
stalking us through the library halls

Even wants to know just what you’ve been googlin’
While the minstrel boy just keeps on buglin’.

Call & Response Chorus:

     Where …. (where)
     are all the songs… (are all the songs)
     that urged us along… (that urged us along)
     When things went so wrong? (when things went so wrong)

     Where … (where)
     has the wind blown ? …(has that wind blown)
     Is it time to question
     some answers of our own?

This war roller coaster some seem to find thrillin’
But why are the good guys acting like villains?
We sing our songs in the shadow of Dylan
We haven’t changed the world but as least we are willin’…

While generation Z just seems to be chillin’
our SUVs we’re blissfully fillin’
As our soldier boys are dutifully killin’
They say freedom’s not free but who’s doin’ the billin’?


(How many miles do we really get… to the soldier?) spoken

And what’ll it take to break the spell
of our fantasy heavens and nightmare hells?
Everyday in the world more innocents die
For the wrong imaginary friends in the sky.

While TV and movies just embellish the lie…
Never asking why… that they never ask why.

In spite of all our history gaps
We keep spinning out our mystery maps
Baskin’ in our cartographic glory
Confusing the map with the territory


Why not treat religions like home swimmin’ pools?
Attractive nuisances for unwary fools
Maybe make ‘em put up fences around ‘em
To keep the innocent from fallin’ in and drownin’…?

harp break

Perhaps I’m in the wrong decade
I’m trying not to be too dismayed
By fundamentalists still on crusade
And the smell of dreams that have decayed

Has our faith in freedom been betrayed,
our doves of peace been delayed,
by calls to war that were obeyed?
Have our memories begun to fade

of a march for peace that was forbade?
As they lob another hand grenade
of sorrows that are all manmade.


We built our lives on our grandparents toil
They worked the factories and they worked the soil
Wouldn’t it make their red blood boil
to see how we’ve grown up so spoiled.

Removed from all the world’s turmoil
in the woes of the world we’re ALL embroiled
while the poorest of us still dies for oil.

Chorus: repeat last line

Ends with instrumental "quote" of “The Minstrel Boy to the war has gone...”

 by David Beede Copyright 2006


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