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Lyr Req/Add: We Didn't Know (Tom Paxton)^^^

DigiTrad:
WE DIDN'T KNOW


Related threads:
Lyr Req: We Didn't Know (Paxton) & protest songs (38)
Chord Req: We Didn't Know (Tom Paxton) (9)
Lyr/Tune Req: We Didn't Know (Tom Paxton) (6)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
We Didn't Know [Tom Paxton]


Greg F. 31 Jan 00 - 10:26 AM
GUEST,Thom424@aol.com 13 Oct 02 - 12:32 PM
Sorcha 13 Oct 02 - 12:40 PM
raredance 13 Oct 02 - 11:44 PM
songs2play 14 Oct 02 - 10:45 AM
raredance 14 Oct 02 - 11:36 PM
raredance 14 Oct 02 - 11:47 PM
dick greenhaus 15 Oct 02 - 09:11 AM
songs2play 15 Oct 02 - 09:52 AM
Sorcha 15 Oct 02 - 09:53 AM
Joe Offer 15 Oct 02 - 12:24 PM
Wolfgang 15 Oct 02 - 12:52 PM
Joe Offer 15 Oct 02 - 01:29 PM
GUEST,Taliesn 15 Oct 02 - 06:57 PM
raredance 15 Oct 02 - 10:06 PM
GUEST 21 Jun 04 - 02:33 AM
GUEST,Ben Anderson 23 Apr 06 - 09:27 PM
Peace 23 Apr 06 - 09:34 PM
goodbar 19 Sep 06 - 04:54 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: WE DIDN'T KNOW (Tom Paxton)
From: Greg F.
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 10:26 AM

WE DIDN'T KNOW
(Tom Paxton)

"We didn't know", said the burgomeister ,"about the camp on the edge of town"
"It was Hitler and his crew that tore the German nation down."
"We saw the cattle cars, its true; maybe they carried a Jew or two"
"They woke us up as they rattled through, but what did you expect me to do?"

Chorus:

We didn't know at all, we didn't see a thing.
You can't hold us to blame, what could we do?
It was a terrible shame, but we can't bear the blame.
Oh, No, not us! We didn't know.

"We didn't know", said the congregation, signing a hymn in their church of Whites
"Press was full of lies about us, preacher told us we were right."
"The outside agitators came, they burned some churches and put the blame
"On decent southern people's names to set our Colored people aflame"
"And maybe some of our boys got hot and a couple of Nigras and Reds got shot"
"They should have stayed where they belonged!"
"The preacher would have told us if we'd done wrong."

Chorus-

"We didn't know", said the puzzled voter, watching the President on TV.
"I guess we've got to drop those bombs if we're going to keep South Asia free."
"The President's such a peaceful man, I guess he's got some kind of plan."
"They say we're torturing prisoners of war, but I don't believe that stuff no more"
"Torturing prisoners is a Communist game, and you can bet they're doing the same!"
"I wish this war was over and through, but what do you expect me to do?

Chorus-
^^
© Tom Paxton/Deep Fork
Recorded on "Ain't That News", Elektra EKS-7298


We Didn't Know added to DT April 2000.
Joe Offer-


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Subject: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: GUEST,Thom424@aol.com
Date: 13 Oct 02 - 12:32 PM

I'm looking for the name of the song by Tom Paxton (at least I think it's one of his) that goes something like this:

We didn't know, we didn't know
said the burgermeister
About the camp at the edge of town
It was Hitler and his men
that tore the German nation down...

...or something cose to that! Can any one help? Thanks ahead of time...

feel free to respond to me directly at Thom424@aol.com


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: Sorcha
Date: 13 Oct 02 - 12:40 PM

Only one hit on Google, there may be more lyrics:

"We didn't know" said the Burgermeister
"about the camp out side of town,
it was Hitler and his crew
who tore the German nation down.
We didn't see a thing.
We didn't know at all.
Sure the cattle cars rumbled through.
And maybe they carried a Jew or two.
But we didn't know.
Oh what a terrible shame.
But you can't hold us to blame.
Oh no not us, we didn't know."


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Subject: Lyr Add: WE DIDN'T KNOW (Tom Paxton)^^^
From: raredance
Date: 13 Oct 02 - 11:44 PM

WE DIDN'T KNOW
(Tom Paxton)

"We didn't know" said the Burgermeister
"about the camp on the edge of town,
It was Hitler and his crew
That tore the German nation down.
We saw the cattle cars it's true.
And maybe they carried a Jew or two.
The woke us up as they rattled through,
But what did you expect me to do.

CHORUS:
We didn't know at all.
We didn't see a thing.
You can't hold us to blame
What could we do
Oh what a terrible shame.
But we can't bear the blame.
Oh no not us, we didn't know.

We didn't know, said the congregation
Singing a hymn in their church of white
The Press was full of lies about us,
Preacher told us we were right
The outside agitators came,
They burned some churches and put the blame
On decent southern people's names
To set our colored people aflame
And maybe some of our boys got hot
And a couple of niggeres and reds got shot.
They should have stayed where they belong
And the preacher would've told us if we'd done wrong.

We didn't know said the puzzled voter,
Watching the President on TV
I guess we've got to drop those bombs
If we're gonna keep South Asia free
The President's such a peaceful man
I guess he's got some kind of plan
They say we're torturing prisoners of war,
But I don't believe that stuff no more
Torturing prisoners is a communist game
And you can bet they're doing the same
I wish this war was over and through
But what did you expect me to do.^^^




rich r
We Didn't Know added to DT April 2000.
Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: songs2play
Date: 14 Oct 02 - 10:45 AM

http://members.lycos.co.uk/songs2play/45know.txt
plus chords


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: raredance
Date: 14 Oct 02 - 11:36 PM

Recordings:

Tom Paxton "Ain't That News" (Elektra)
The Mitchell Trio (with John Denver) "Violets of Dawn" (Mercury)


rich r


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: raredance
Date: 14 Oct 02 - 11:47 PM

I should also add:

copyright 1965 Deep Fork Music

The song appeared in both Broadside (#62) and SingOut! magazines and is in compilations from both -

Broadside III, edited by A Cunningham and A Friesen, 1970, Oak PUblications.

Collected Reprints from Sing Out! Vol 7-12, 1992, Sing Out! Corp


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 09:11 AM

Just to be picky, it is in DigiTrad. Cleverly hidden under the tit;e "We Didn't Know"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: songs2play
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 09:52 AM

I hope that was a mis-type there Dick.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: Sorcha
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 09:53 AM

And I did look, Dick, but it didn't come up.


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Subject: Lyr Add: Correction: WE DIDN'T KNOW (Tom Paxton)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 12:24 PM

I suppose the text we have in the Digital Tradition could use some cleaning up. I copied the text from Sing Out! Reprints and compared with the other three transcriptions we have. Rich R's is probably the most accurate, but I think I added an "s" somewhere. Here's what I come up with for a corrected text to submit to the Digital Tradition.

Click to play

-Joe Offer-


WE DIDN'T KNOW
(Tom Paxton)

"We didn't know", said the bourgomeister, "about the camps on the edge of town
It was Hitler and his crew that tore the German nation down.
We saw the cattle cars, it's true, and maybe they carried a Jew or two"
They woke us up as they rattled through, but what did you expect me to do?"

CHORUS
We didn't know at all, we didn't see a thing.
You can't hold us to blame, what could we do?
It was a terrible shame, but we can't bear the blame.
Oh, No, not us! We didn't know.

"We didn't know," said the congregation, singing a hymn in their church of white
"The Press was full of lies about us, Preacher told us we were right.
The outside agitators came, they burned some churches and put the blame
On decent southern people's names to set our colored people aflame
And maybe some of our boys got hot and a couple of niggers and reds got shot
They should have stayed where they belong
And Preacher would've told us if we'd done wrong."

"We didn't know," said the puzzled voter, watching the President on TV.
"I guess we've got to drop those bombs if we're gonna keep South Asia free.
The President's such a peaceful man, I guess he's got some kind of plan.
They say we're torturing prisoners of war, but I don't believe that stuff no more
Torturing prisoners is a Communist game, and you can bet they're doing the same!
I wish this war was over and through, but what do you expect me to do?"

Words and music by Tom Paxton
Copyright 1965, United Artists Music Co/EMI
(c) Tom Paxton/Deep Fork
Recorded on "Ain't That News", Elektra EKS-7298

Source: Collected Reprints from Sing Out! Vol 7-12, 1992

filename[ DIDNTKNO
RB GF RR PR
apr00


Notes from Sing Out! Reprints

    I have this friend who was a flight cadet in the Air Force a few years ago. During the course of his training he was called before a board of examining officers and asked whether or not he would obey an order by a superior officer to drop a nuclear bomb on an American city. The mere fact that questions like this are being asked of elite military personnel points up graphically, I think, how far into limbo the Cold War and the arms race have carried us. The fact that the biggest of the big brass in the Pentagon are approaching such questions scares the hell out of me, because you can bet your last dollar that they can find the people who could be persuaded that their duty lay in doing just that unthinkable thing. The world is full of zealots and most of them are content to hold their beliefs and attempt to persuade others. But when those zealots get their hot little hands on a nuclear arsenal, I think it's time to get worried.

    The Nuremberg War Crimes trials examined only German atrocities. The standard cop-out was either "Orders are orders" or "We had no idea that such things were going on." There will be no war crimes trials, apparently, in Mississippi, Alabama, or in Vietnam. Political considerations must, of course, come first.
    -Tom Paxton-

This thread (click) makes an interesting comparison between this song and Dylan's "Who Killed Davey Moore."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 12:52 PM

Very good song.
A correction should print 'burgermeister' (Lord Mayor) or 'buergermeister' or 'bürgermeister' and eliminate the 'o'.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 01:29 PM

Well, Wolfgang, my two English dictionaries say the correct English spelling is "burgomaster," but I've rarely seen it in print. The text mixed English with German and came up with "burgomeister," and that's what I usually see in English-language uses of the word.

So yeah, you are correct and I knew it before you said it, but I'm going to go with the printed text.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: GUEST,Taliesn
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 06:57 PM

Only Tom Paxton lyrics I still remember are from his clever talking blues piece, "the Viet Nam Pot Luck Blues", which ends

" So his squad and my squad settled down

and passed som e lovely stuff around.

All too soon it was time to go,

and the Captain got on the radio

and said " Hello Heeead-quarters,

we have met the enemy....

and he has been *smashed*

All about meeting up with a Vietnamese cadre offering
their own special stash ...
"straight from Oncle Ho's victory garden.
We call it Han-noi Gold".

Still brings atremor of an inner chuckle the way Loudon Wainwright III still can.
Cleverr man that Tom Paxton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics?
From: raredance
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 10:06 PM

thanks Joe for cleaning up the punctuation, adding the "s" to "camp" and correcting the spelling of the n word. the only pickiness left is the quotation mark after "two" which doesn't belong there.

Speaking of variable spelling the Broadside reprint book has "bourgomeister".

The following are Tom's liner notes from the LP
"Begun in the London subway on the way to a Trafalgar Square peace march, this song is a reflection of my preoccupation with fascism and what makes it ticke, particularly in some quarters here in America. The traditional German cop-out is all too easy to spot. With the soldiers it was obedience to orders; with the civilians it was variations on a theme of "I was never a Nazi" and "We had no idea of what was going on."

In Mississippi we have families who "know nothing" of lynchings, beatings and murders. In any case, there is "nothing they can do to stop it."

Even our establishment press has p8ublished pictures of South Vietnamese troops "interrogating" a captured Viet Cong with the help of the water torture, beating them and dispatching them with .45's.

Tell me you support the government's policy if you like, but don't try to tell me you didn't know what was going on."

rich r


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics? We Didn't Know
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Jun 04 - 02:33 AM

I have just yesterday visited the Sachsenhausen konzentrationslager i the little town oranienburg outside Berlin. Listen guys. Everybody knew!!!!!! the village houses are situated right up against the wall surrounding the camp. If anyone travels to Berlin, go see the camp, and after that the "stasi-museum" in Normannenstrasse Berlin. two regimes with the same methods (almost). not enuf time have passed to write songs about "stasi", more´s the pity. Maybe I will one day, but the guides at that museum are all people who have been jailed by stasi.
I digress. Thanks for the lyrics. I remember the melody vaguely.

Peter Hermansen D282r@hotmail.com


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics? We Didn't Know
From: GUEST,Ben Anderson
Date: 23 Apr 06 - 09:27 PM

Can anyone find the complete lyrics to the white bones of allende by tom paxton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Tom Paxton Lyrics? We Didn't Know
From: Peace
Date: 23 Apr 06 - 09:34 PM

I think


you can hear it on this link if you can figure out how to do that.


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Subject: Chord Req: Tom Paxton 'We Didn't Know'
From: goodbar
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 04:54 PM

Anyone have the chords to Tom Paxton's "We Didn't Know"??? I know they're out there somewhere...


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