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A while back...
After effects of the Toby Keith concert: Wrote this country music song while driving around in my humvee. Maybe later I'll work out the guitar part and record.Looking back for that link, I was surprised to realize that was written in May of last year. I was in Iraq, the buildup for the surge was ongoing (though almost done) and we were about to launch some key missions. Meanwhile, back in America, Harry Reid was about to announce the whole thing was a failure. Time flies whether you're having fun or not.
A very rough cut of a song I wrote during my second tour of duty in Iraq, as part of the "surge" operation in the summer of 2007. I had no guitar or recording equipment on hand over there and this had to remain "in my head" for months until I returned home. I believe I've managed to transfer that music of the mind into digital reality without losing any of the original...
But this is still a rough draft - a basic and incomplete cut. Each part was recorded in one take, (including the lead solo which was improvised on the spot) and the result is something that exists only because I wanted to turn an idea into a reality that I could build on. (On the other hand, my time is such that this may be all it ever is...)
FWIW: I first used the phrase "They're making noise, we're making history" a few years ago as a comment to a fellow milblogger who was taking a tremendous amount of crap in his comments section on one of his posts from Iraq. It was my way of saying "don't worry about these REMFs - it's a hell of a lot easier to write from the comfort of their living rooms than it is in a tent. One of your words is worth about a thousand of theirs."Words to this version below the fold. (Mrs G insists she can't hear the singing. My excuse: the quality changed with each subsequent mix of this song, from original tracks to mixed final to video soundtrack to youtube upload. But my actual response to her complaint: turn it up.)
And if there are any bass players out there who want to throw down a track and send it to me, feel free. (Preferably ogg, but I can work with lower quality stuff, too.)
I may bore you with technical details on the creation of this later, as an update or in the comments if anyone's curious.
The Free and the Brave
Over in America, home of the free
Land of unlimited opportunity
People in the streets protest whatever they can
While over in Iraq and Afghanistan
The brave, far from home, are standing tall
and toeing the line, so they can have it all
Some try to complicate it but it's simple to me
They're making noise, we're making history
Osama'd like to think that we can't get it done
And some would like to tell you it's time to cut and run
Me I like to finish something once I've begun
And I don't think I'm the only one
Here making history, hearing the noise
of things that divide and things that destroy
Things you'd never ever want to see on your street
Things you might call the price of defeat
So excuse me if I come home a little annoyed
If while I was making history, you were making noise
We're making history
They're making noise
We're facing the fire
They're playing with toys
Nobody ever said
That it would be easy
They're making noise
We're making history
- Iraq, May, 2007
A note on the pictures: Most of these were actually in my head along with the words and music, I began adding the images shortly after the words coalesced. But like my guitar, they too were back home (on my computer hard drive) - except for those I took in Iraq during that tour. Many are from other milbloggers, and I can only remember the sources for a few. So if you see one of yours in the montage let me know, I'll compile a list of credits. (And you have my thanks.)
For my fellow troops still deployed: sorry, I know youtube is blocked and all you see is a big square gap up there. I'll get a version to you through other methods.
Mrs G is right though, and I'd like to be able to hear the singing better, too.Posted by MaryAnn at February 19, 2008 09:53 AM
Mrs. G is always right.
But I'd like to sing better... and if you heard it better you'd agree.
So, you're welcome. :)Posted by Greyhawk at February 19, 2008 09:56 AM
Thanks for sharing the video, interesting lyrics. Glad to see you bloggin' again.Posted by LT Nixon at February 19, 2008 10:24 AM
Big G, welcome back...and what a kick ass song! I "saw" Toby through my company's eyes (I stayed behind and sent em off to Camp Vic for the show)...But his music stayed in my head. I can hear him or even Alan Jackson work this real good!
What a surprise! An early birthday present. I had trouble hearing al the lyrics also. How about printing them on your blog? Then we could all sing along.Posted by Lucille at February 19, 2008 01:17 PM
Wow, flashback to your rock star days! You still sound good to me! I do know a pretty good bass player with some extra time on his hands these days. I'll put the bug in his ear. I thought I recognized someone in those quick flashes of pictures, but of course he prefers to fly under the radar so I doubt if he will want his name in the list of credits ;) Love you!Posted by bigsisevengreyerhawk at February 19, 2008 02:00 PM
I love it! Can't wait to see a polished/complete version of this. Good stuff!Posted by FbL at February 19, 2008 03:22 PM
Good to see you back again! That was awesome - great way to start the week! Thanks :)Posted by HomefrontSix at February 19, 2008 04:25 PM
You need a better mixing studio. Bug Roger Simon to make that happen.Posted by Patrick S Lasswell at February 19, 2008 05:35 PM
Great lyrics!Posted by David M at February 19, 2008 06:07 PM
Hmmmmm. Back with a...vengeance? I caught you in the clips. Keep it up.Posted by nanahawk at February 19, 2008 10:26 PM
I loved it! At least we're making new music. those other folks are just playing re-runs.Posted by Kat-missouri at February 20, 2008 01:50 AM
Hey, I turned it up....played it over and over, sang along and tapped my boot.
That is until my GrandDaughter Sarah came in and told me I woke up her little sister.
Dang, good stuff...
Papa RayPosted by Papa Ray at February 20, 2008 02:45 AM
Glad your back God bless you and your loved ones.Posted by Rick NYC at February 20, 2008 05:29 AM
Welcome home Greyhawk, loved the song, and thanks for including the photo of Fiddler's Green LZ that honors my son and his fellow fallen 48th BCT GAARNG;
proud dad SGT Mike Stokely
KIA 16 AUG 05 near Yusufiyah Iraq
E 108 CAV 48th BCT GAARNG
"But I'd like to sing better... and if you heard it better you'd agree."
Sheesh. Your voice is just fine. Just make it a little louder.
Or do we have to beg? ;-)Posted by MaryAnn at February 21, 2008 05:08 PM
I'm with MaryAnn, and hey, I'm not shy...
Pretty, pretty, pretty PLEASE?!?
It's great BTW! I had wondered how it sounded in your head -- great poem, better song! :)
Anyway, I did turn it up which definitely helped, but REALLY, we all want our high-end Greyhawk MP3/video (whatever), k?
Welcome home! Thoroughly enjoying the new posts :)Posted by Lisa in DC at February 22, 2008 02:34 AM
Those are excellent lyrics, and Mrs. G is right.
Thank you sir.Posted by P-dub at February 24, 2008 03:33 PM Hide Comments | Show/Add Comments in Popup Window(18) | (Note: You must refresh main page to view newly posted comments here)