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  #1  
Old 04-18-2013, 05:39 PM
AxisDrummer AxisDrummer is offline
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Default Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Hey guys (fellow Americans and of course fellow drummers from other countries),

We have a show booked for Memorial Day weekend and I brought up to my bandmates that we should really focus on the aspect of the holiday. Not to take advantage of it, because we genuinely love our country (my other 3 bandmates served the US Armed Forces), but I think we could really get a huge draw by promoting the holiday.

I already plan on flying the U.S. Flag in place of our band banner and having a static red/white/blue light presentation instead of our typical flashing sound-active light show.

But I'd like to try to cover a patriotic/U.S. themed song for this show. It can't be anything TOO difficult, because of our limited practice time before the show. We are a 4 piece cover rock band (2 guitarists), no keyboards. My immediate favorites are Born in the USA and Coming to America, but there ARE keys in there, although there could be some chance that part could be replicated on guitar. I guess the first thought is rocking the National Anthem and that could be the easiest way to go before we launch into our opener.

Any thoughts/suggestions?
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Old 04-18-2013, 06:01 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Here's a few..................

American Pie - Don Mclean

Pink Houses - John Mellencamp

Rockin' In the Free World - Neil Young

In America - Charlie Daniels

Living in America - James Brown

American Girl - Tom Petty

Good Luck with it

American Woman - The Guess Who

We're an American Band - GFR

Good Luck With the gig
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  #3  
Old 04-18-2013, 06:30 PM
AxisDrummer AxisDrummer is offline
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Great ideas! I'll run those by the band. We actually do Rockin' In The Free World already. One of our favorites and a huge crowd pleaser because we drop everything out after the 2nd solo and do a crowd-participation sing along.

A little nervous about lack of crowd because lots of people go camping that weekend (live here in the Midwest) but it all depends on weather. Also, our gig is on the Friday night so that may help because the holiday is usually celebrated Sat/Sun/Mon.
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Old 04-18-2013, 06:39 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by longgun View Post
Here's a few..................

American Pie - Don Mclean
Never though of that song as patriotic necessarily.

I love Neil Sedaka's Immigrant Song. I think Led Zep stole the idea. :)
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Old 04-18-2013, 07:18 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

One Nation under a Groove

Not patriotic necessarily, but not not patriotic :)
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  #6  
Old 04-18-2013, 07:20 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Born In the USA isn't really a patriotic song, but I guess it would be appropriate in a subversive kind of way. In a similar vein you could also do John Cougar's Little Pink Houses-- or R.O.C.K. In The USA. People will probably expect you to do that godawful Lee Greenwood thing if you're billing it as a show of patriotic music. America The Beautiful would be good, and This Land Is Your Land, if you can pull it off. The national anthem is ceremonial music, with an etiquette, so I don't know if I'd include it on a bill of entertainment.
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  #7  
Old 04-18-2013, 07:33 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

"I'm Afraid of Americans" - David Bowie + Trent Reznor
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  #8  
Old 04-18-2013, 08:43 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by longgun View Post
Here's a few..................

American Pie - Don Mclean

Pink Houses - John Mellencamp

Rockin' In the Free World - Neil Young

In America - Charlie Daniels

Living in America - James Brown

American Girl - Tom Petty

Good Luck with it

American Woman - The Guess Who

We're an American Band - GFR

Good Luck With the gig
I really have to say..Americam Woman is NOT a patriotic song,but a rather negative ascessment of American women.

Google the lyrics for Rockin in the Free World,and you'll also see it's far from Patriotic.It talks about poverty and young mothers going out and getting high after her baby is asleep.

I think if you just Google American Patriotic songs,you'll see a lot of southern rock and mostly country songs will come up,especially songs from Toby Keith,Brooks & Dunn and Alabama

Springstein is not really patriotic either,so I'd give Born in the USA another listen also.

Steve B
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Old 04-18-2013, 09:02 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tamadrm View Post
I really have to say..Americam Woman is NOT a patriotic song,but a rather negative ascessment of American women.

Google the lyrics for Rockin in the Free World,and you'll also see it's far from Patriotic.It talks about poverty and young mothers going out and getting high after her baby is asleep.

I think if you just Google American Patriotic songs,you'll see a lot of southern rock and mostly country songs will come up,especially songs from Toby Keith,Brooks & Dunn and Alabama

Springstein is not really patriotic either,so I'd give Born in the USA another listen also.

Steve B
And when someone is playing these songs at a gig, who really thinks about that? All people hear, for example is, Keep on rockin' in the free world! blah, blah, blah, Keep on rockin' in the free world! Same thing with Born in the USA.
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  #10  
Old 04-18-2013, 09:07 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

I do,and lots of other people do who actually listen to a songs music and lyrics.

Mention Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen to American vets and you're likely to get unfavorable reactions.

Steve B
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  #11  
Old 04-18-2013, 10:23 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Memorial Day is a somber event. A day to remember men and women who died serving in the armed forces, not just those who have served and not just another 3 day weekend. I know it's the unofficial start of summer, barbecues, drinking in t-shirts, etc. And don't get me wrong- that stuff should still go on. But it is something else.

I think a moment of silence at the beginning of your gig will have far greater impact than a couple of themed hits. Then, after everyone has had a moment to reflect on the meaning of the day...let 'er rip!

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

-Lt. Col. John D McCrae, MD, Canadian Army 1915


Maybe dedicate a song or two. We do a Memorial Day parade every year and last year in Holliston, MA one of the speeches was by a buddy of a young soldier from that town in Vietnam. He had just gotten tape of "Wouldn't It Be Nice" from his girlfriend and was wowed by it as he played it a few times for his buddy. A few hours later he was killed in a reconnaissance mission. That type of story isn't unique and I'm sure you could come up with a thoughtful dedication to someone in the audience who lost a loved one in action.

As to your original question- I'd go with "We're an American Band". Fairly neutral theme. On second thought, "Fortunate Son" by CCR- even though it's politically tinged, it's a classic, fairly simple and rocks hard.

-John
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  #12  
Old 04-18-2013, 10:49 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

"Freedom"- Jimi Hendrix

Great tune.

Bonzolead
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  #13  
Old 04-18-2013, 11:00 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

You could always have a star spangled banner guitar solo to start or finish. Maybe a little les distortion that Jimi had going.
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  #14  
Old 04-18-2013, 11:08 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

"Only In America" by Brooks & Dunn and "God Bless the USA" by Lee Greenwood come to mind.
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  #15  
Old 04-18-2013, 11:13 PM
AxisDrummer AxisDrummer is offline
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

All excellent ideas and points. As a few have mentioned, even though many of the songs aren't patriotic (but have the words America or USA or freedom or...etc...) in the title or chorus, they would still go over because often the crowd just hears the buzz word and may not follow the lyrics or get into the deeper meaning.....especially after drinks.

It would probably just be one song. As someone mentioned, if we did the Star Spangled Banner, it would HAVE to be reverent. I wouldn't even want our singers singing it. Just an instrumental. Or possibly, just play a pre-recorded RESPECTFUL version of it.

And as JohnW mentioned, I also was thinking of a mention about remembering our fallen brothers and sisters and having a moment of silence before we kick into Blitzkrieg Bop (our opener.) And this is MOST likely what I could see us doing, since we may not even have time to rehearse more new songs (already have a few on the queue.)

Thanks again!
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Old 04-19-2013, 07:45 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tamadrm View Post
I really have to say..Americam Woman is NOT a patriotic song,but a rather negative ascessment of American women.

Google the lyrics for Rockin in the Free World,and you'll also see it's far from Patriotic.It talks about poverty and young mothers going out and getting high after her baby is asleep.

I think if you just Google American Patriotic songs,you'll see a lot of southern rock and mostly country songs will come up,especially songs from Toby Keith,Brooks & Dunn and Alabama

Springstein is not really patriotic either,so I'd give Born in the USA another listen also.

Steve B
Quote:
Originally Posted by tamadrm View Post
I do,and lots of other people do who actually listen to a songs music and lyrics.

Mention Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen to American vets and you're likely to get unfavorable reactions.

Steve B
Steve, definitely didn't mean to start any controversy........... I agree some of the songs are actually "anti-patriotic" a bit, but when I hear "Born in the USA" for example.............I guess I don't hear the bad stuff.

I've served this great country of ours all of my adult life..............but I still dig Neil Young and Springsteen.................can't stand their political views.............but they do have some great songs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AxisDrummer View Post
All excellent ideas and points. As a few have mentioned, even though many of the songs aren't patriotic (but have the words America or USA or freedom or...etc...) in the title or chorus, they would still go over because often the crowd just hears the buzz word and may not follow the lyrics or get into the deeper meaning.....especially after drinks.

It would probably just be one song. As someone mentioned, if we did the Star Spangled Banner, it would HAVE to be reverent. I wouldn't even want our singers singing it. Just an instrumental. Or possibly, just play a pre-recorded RESPECTFUL version of it.

And as JohnW mentioned, I also was thinking of a mention about remembering our fallen brothers and sisters and having a moment of silence before we kick into Blitzkrieg Bop (our opener.) And this is MOST likely what I could see us doing, since we may not even have time to rehearse more new songs (already have a few on the queue.)

Thanks again!

Good luck with it and let us know how it goes.
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  #17  
Old 04-19-2013, 08:03 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

...

Were an American Band- Grand Funk Railroad.


...
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  #18  
Old 04-19-2013, 08:12 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

I'm struggling to think of any song with American in the title that is patriotic- most are ironic at best, if not downright critical and subversive!
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:19 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Some of these have been mentioned, but here's my playlist:

Living in the U.S.A. - Steve Miller
Philadelphia Freedom - Elton John
Rockin' in the U.S.A. - Kiss
Remember the Heroes - Sammy Hagar
America - Simon & Garfunkel
We're an American Band - Grand Funk Railroad
Red White & Blue - Lynyrd Skynyrd

...and who could forget,

Star Spangled Banner - Jimi Hendrix
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:57 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bonzolead View Post
"Freedom"- Jimi Hendrix

Great tune.

Bonzolead
Heck yeah! +1! Also Philadelphia Freedom cuz Philly's awesome.
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  #21  
Old 04-22-2013, 12:17 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

The Lee Greenwood song is your call. I'm personally tired of it after what, 25 years? It almost reads like a parody of patriotism, but plenty of other songs probably fit that description and have become songbook standards, so...just my opinion.

American Pie, on the other hand is pretty patriotic, but more from the standpoint of having to watch your country change into something you weren't ready for. It's kind of a goodbye to the perceived innocence of the postwar period that is commonly regarded as a "conservative" view of America, and a goodbye to the sensibilities that got the country there in the first place.
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Old 04-22-2013, 01:00 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AxisDrummer View Post
I guess the first thought is rocking the National Anthem and that could be the easiest way to go before we launch into our opener.

Any thoughts/suggestions?
I highly recommend rocking the National Anthem.

Do this, and no one there will ever forget you . . .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WAapJhYgQ8U
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  #23  
Old 04-22-2013, 01:09 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

America, f**k yeah! --- Team America, World police
America, Gun totting inbreds --- F**ked by Heathens
Top Gun theme
Born in the USA --- Bruce Springsteen
Land of confusion --- Genesis

Only ones I can think of that are not said yet....
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Old 04-22-2013, 01:38 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

I can't believe no one's mentioned Neil Diamond's America yet:

Quote:
Far
We've been travelling far
Without a home
But not without a star

Free
Only want to be free
We huddle close
Hang on to a dream

On the boats and on the planes
They're coming to America
Never looking back again
They're coming to America

Home, don't it seem so far away
Oh, we're travelling light today
In the eye of the storm
In the eye of the storm

Home, to a new and a shiny place
Make our bed, and we'll say our grace
Freedom's light burning warm
Freedom's light burning warm

Everywhere around the world
They're coming to America
Every time that flag's unfurled
They're coming to America

Got a dream to take them there
They're coming to America
Got a dream they've come to share
They're coming to America

They're coming to America
They're coming to America
They're coming to America
They're coming to America
Today, today, today, today, today

My country 'tis of thee
(Today)
Sweet land of liberty
(today)
Of thee I sing
(today)
Of thee I sing
(today)
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Old 04-22-2013, 03:06 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

How about Arlo Guthrie's This Land? If that song isn't Patriotic, then just shoot me.
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Old 04-22-2013, 05:25 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AxisDrummer View Post
Hey guys (fellow Americans and of course fellow drummers from other countries),

We have a show booked for Memorial Day weekend and I brought up to my bandmates that we should really focus on the aspect of the holiday. Not to take advantage of it, because we genuinely love our country (my other 3 bandmates served the US Armed Forces), but I think we could really get a huge draw by promoting the holiday.

I already plan on flying the U.S. Flag in place of our band banner and having a static red/white/blue light presentation instead of our typical flashing sound-active light show.

But I'd like to try to cover a patriotic/U.S. themed song for this show. It can't be anything TOO difficult, because of our limited practice time before the show. We are a 4 piece cover rock band (2 guitarists), no keyboards. My immediate favorites are Born in the USA and Coming to America, but there ARE keys in there, although there could be some chance that part could be replicated on guitar. I guess the first thought is rocking the National Anthem and that could be the easiest way to go before we launch into our opener.

Any thoughts/suggestions?
The other National Anthem: Born to Be Wild.....

Thank you for your service.
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Old 04-22-2013, 05:33 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

"America" by Motorhead.

Someone mentioned the Top Gun song - Danger Zone. Awesome drum sounds on that song.

Proud to be an American by Lee Greenwood for sure.

God Bless the USA

Metallica: "Don't Tread on Me"
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Old 04-22-2013, 04:35 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midnite Zephyr View Post
How about Arlo Guthrie's This Land? If that song isn't Patriotic, then just shoot me.
"This Land is Your Land" was written by Arlo's dad, Woodie.
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  #29  
Old 04-22-2013, 05:49 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Quote:
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"This Land is Your Land" was written by Arlo's dad, Woodie.
oh right. I got mixed up. Thanks for the correction.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:45 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

It would be a great song to do. "City of New Orleans" would go over well, too. "Comin' into Los Angeles", not so much.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:50 AM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Oh yeah, that one is even better. One of my all-time favorites. Agreed about the Arlo song.
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  #32  
Old 04-25-2013, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

"Bulls on Parade" by Rage Against The Machine.


The U.S. is built on questioning the concentration of power...what is more patriotic than speaking out against power abuse even when unethical investigation/enforcement powers might damage your career...or life?

This is the essence of the original Continental Congress.

(otto runs away hiding his muck sturring stick)
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  #33  
Old 04-25-2013, 09:15 PM
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Default Re: Patriotic American song ideas for Memorial Day gig?

Ref lyrics etc....I'm a VietNam combat vet, Mekong Delta....I'd be sensitive to the lyrics if
the songs are supposed to be Patriotic....just sayin'....ref Vietnam...it was all wrong and
once you were there, if there were any doubts, you knew it then....I was drafted and in before
the protests really hit the streets here. Plenty of great tunes to choose from!
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