Donovan - The war drags on

First performance: 00/09/1968


Bruce covered the song only once: 

Springsteen (along with fellow Earth-band members John Graham and Michael Burke) entered Ocean County College in September 1968. Bruce ended up staying for three semesters, dropping out in December 1969 shortly after his parents moved to California. Earth is believed to have performed several times at Ocean County College during the September to December 1968 period. Springsteen even contributed a piece of poetry to Seascapes, the school's Literary Yearbook. The twenty-six listed songs are taken from the only known Earth-era repertoire listing. The document is likely to have been created by Springsteen in September or October 1968. The number of tracks displayed, their sequencing, plus the header and numbering notation by Bruce, all point to this as being an inventory of Earth's live repertoire of 'cover' material. For this reason it is of greater historical significance than an individual gig setlist, particularly in that no Earth audio is circulating. A few of these songs are performance hold-ove1968-09-00 Ocean County College, Toms River, NJrs from the The Castiles era. Since Earth was a three-piece band it's hardly surprising that material from both Cream and The Jimi Hendrix Experience (the era's two premier three-piece bands) are abundantly represented. Most are well known songs. However there are several obscurities, "Slow Blues in G" and "Fast Blues Break in G" are public domain titles, likely influenced by Eric Clapton's arrangements during his 1965-66 Bluesbreakers period. There is also Donovan's protest anthem "The War Drags On", plus Cream's "Swlabr" and "Toad". "Help Me" is a track from Ten Years After's 1967 debut LP. "The Morning: Another Morning" is courtesy of The Moody Blues. From a timeline standpoint the latest released song titles are Steppenwolf's "Born To Be Wild" (July 1968) and Cream's "Politician" (August 1968). 
photo credit Billy Smith


"The War Drags on" is taken from Donovan’s 1965 album "The Universal Soldier".

Other cover versions

Bruce on the artist


Let me tell you the story of a soldier named Dan
Went out to fight the good fight in South Vietnam
Went out to fight for peace, liberty and all
Went out to fight for equality, hope, let's go

And the war drags on

Found himself involved in a sea of blood and bones
Millions without faces, without hope and without homes
And the guns they grew louder as they made dust out of bones
That the flesh had long since left just as the people left their homes

And the war drags on

They're just there to try and make the people free
But the way that they're doin' it, it don't seem like that to me
Just more blood letting and misery and tears
That this poor country's known for the last twenty years

And the war drags on

Last night, poor Dan had a nightmare it seems
One kept occurrin' and reoccurrin' in his dreams
Cities full of people burnin', screamin', shoutin' loud
And right there overhead, a great orange mushroom cloud

And there's no more war
For there's no, no more world
And the tears come streaming down
Yes, I lie crying on the ground