Friday, September 14, 2012

Songs That Should Be Done as Medleys: “A New England” and “For Broken Ears”

A New England” is a cult classic originally written and recorded by Billy Bragg.  The song became a hit for Kristy MacColl in 1984.  Bragg wrote two extra versus for MacColl

For Broken Ears” is a folk/alt country song written and recorded by Hot Water Music’s Chuck Ragan on his solo debut Feast or Famine.  In 2008 Ragan released a split 7 inch record with The Loved Ones on which they covered one of the other’s songs.  The Loved Ones took the acoustic “For Broken Ears” and played it with electric guitars and the full band. 

In my mind this mash-up would be played on an electric guitar but without a band (and honestly I’d love to hear The Loved Ones’ Dave Hause take a stab at it).  These songs could easily transition from a verse of one to the chorus of the other and vice versa.  Below are videos and the lyrics to each song (including the lyrics for the extra verse on “A New England,” though the video is for the original because that is the version that I hear in my head going along with “For Broken Ears;” you can hear the MacColl version of “A New England” here and Bragg performing the song with the added verse here; also you can hear a version of “For Broken Ears” performed by Ragan and Hause here).  Listen to these amazing songs back to back and see if you can imagine them mashed together. 



I was twenty one years when I wrote this song
I'm twenty two now, but I won't be for long
People ask when will you grow up to be a man
But all the girls I loved at school
Are already pushing prams

I loved you then as I love you still
Tho I put you on a pedestal,
They put you on the pill
I don't feel bad about letting you go
I just feel sad about letting you know

I don't want to change the world
I'm not looking for a new England
I'm just looking for another girl
I don't want to change the world
I'm not looking for a new England
I'm just looking for another girl

I loved the words you wrote to me
But that was bloody yesterday
I can't survive on what you send
Every time you need a friend

I saw two shooting stars last night
I wished on them but they were only satellites
Is it wrong to wish on space hardware
I wish, I wish, I wish you'd care

I don't want to change the world
I'm not looking for a new England
I'm just looking for another girl
(Looking for another girl)
(Looking for another girl)
(Looking for another gi-rl)

-extra verse-
My dreams were full of strange ideas
My mind was set despite the fears
But other things got in the way
I never asked that boy to stay

Once upon a time at home
I sat beside the telephone
Waiting for someone to pull me through
When at last it didn't ring, I knew it wasn't you

I don't want to change the world
I'm not looking for a new England
I'm just looking for another girl
(Looking for another girl)
(Looking for another girl)
(Looking for another gi-rl)
 


Where are the ones who carry their guns
To the far away lands with the blackened suns
From the smoke and narrow minds
The half-truth trails and holy lies
Of an empty heart and overflowing mouth
A plastic smile and a coward’s frown
Repercussions come around
When the word named free burns to the ground somehow

Where are the deaf and where are the dumb
From the side of the tracks
Where no reason comes from
And the tables never bare
The water runs and mamas always there
So who separates the world from the start
Where such words would come and such thoughts would cause
A shot heard round the world
Or just as sad never heard at all

So down, down, down like a ball of flames
To the rotten core filling up with names of hypocrites.
What a massive list
Don’t exclude yourself from it
Don’t compromise administration lies
Carried out and covered up with time
Carried out and turned around to shine
Or high on a pedestal of broken lives

Compassion speaks loud for itself
Falls on broken ears and off the value shelf
Into the dirt left to the wind
Coming up strong ready to begin
To obliterate the word from the start
Where such ideas come and such ideas cause
A spark that’ll set a blaze
And leave the embers red until the end of days

So down, down, down like a ball of flames
To the rotten core filling up with names of hypocrites.
What a massive list
Don’t exclude yourself from it
Don’t compromise administration lies
Carried out and covered up with time
Carried out and turned around to shine
Or high on a pedestal of broken lives
Where are the ones who carry their guns
To the far away lands with the blackened suns
From the smoke and narrow minds
The half-truth trails and holy lies
Of an empty heart and overflowing mouth
A plastic smile and a coward’s frown
Repercussions come around
When the word named free burns to the ground somehow

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