Pete Seeger - BRING THEM HOME (IF YOU LOVE YOUR UNCLE SAM)

First performance: 10/05/2006


Coverinfo

Bring' em home is a song written by Bruce Springsteen, combining Pete Seeger's Bring them home ( If you love your uncle Sam ) with some elements from the civil war era song When Johnny comes marching home. The song was released as a digital single in 2006. When Pete Seeger's 2003 album Seeds: The Songs Of Pete Seeger, Volume 3 was released, Jim Musselman sent a copy to Jon Landau and Bruce Springsteen with, as Musselman explained, "a thank you note to both of them for appearing on the first CD of the trilogy and for their support and commitment to the project over the years." Bruce Springsteen had recorded We shall overcome for the 1998 album Where Have All The Flowers Gone: The Songs Of Pete Seeger. Bruce first recorded Bring 'em home  with The Seeger Sessions Band on 21 Jan 2006, during the last of the three Seeger Sessions. That initial recording was based on Seeger's 2003 version of Bring them home ( if you love your uncle Sam ) but Springsteen made some few changes. He replaced the "So now we don't want to fight for oil / Underneath some foreign soil" verse with two verses of his own, "This country belongs to you and me / We don't need no imperial presidency" and "You don't want your freedom gone / You better know which side you're on". That original Springsteen studio version of the song was not included on the We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions album. Springsteen continued to work on it, removing some verses and adding some of his own. Springsteen's version became a song of its own, titled "Bring 'Em Home".
 
More info : Springsteenlyrics 
 
Bruce performed the song 17 times
 
2006-05-10 - PALAIS OMNISPORTS DE PARIS-BERCY, PARIS, FRANCE
2006-05-21 - HOVET, STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN
2006-05-27 - TWEETER CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS, MANSFIELD, MA
2006-05-28 - NISSAN PAVILION, BRISTOW, VA
2006-05-30 - GERMAIN AMPHITHEATER, COLUMBUS, OH
2006-06-03 - GLENDALE ARENA, GLENDALE, AZ
2006-06-05 - GREEK THEATRE, LOS ANGELES, CA
2006-06-06 - SLEEP TRAIN PAVILION, CONCORD, CA
2006-06-11 - XCEL ENERGY CENTER, ST. PAUL, MN
2006-06-13 - FIRST MIDWEST BANK AMPHITHEATER, TINLEY PARK, IL
2006-06-16 - BLOSSOM MUSIC CENTER, CUYAHOGA FALLS, OH
2006-06-17 - DTE ENERGY MUSIC THEATRE, CLARKSTON, MI
2006-06-19 - SARATOGA PERFORMING ARTS CENTER, SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY
2006-06-22 - MADISON SQUARE GARDEN, NEW YORK CITY, NY
2006-06-23 - STUDIO 6A, GE BUILDING, ROCKEFELLER CENTER, NEW YORK CITY, NY (Late Night with Conan O'Brien)
2006-06-24 - PNC BANK ARTS CENTER, HOLMDEL, NJ
2006-11-14 - HALLAM FM ARENA, SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND
 
 
A live version is released on We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sesssions (American Land Edition). 
 
 
 

Songinfo

Bring them home ( If you love your uncle Sam ) is a song written by Pete Seeger in 1965 during the Vietnam war as an invitation to support the move for U.S. troops withdrawal. The song was first published in issue #71 (June 1966) of Broadside magazine. 
 
  • Pete Seeger first released a live version of the song on his 1969 album Young Vs. Old. 
  • In 2003, Seeger and Appleseed Recordings founder Jim Musselman updated the song to address the Iraq war. The song was recorded with Seeger trading verses and lines with Billy Bragg, Ani DiFranco and Steve Earle. That new recording of the song was released on Pete Seeger's 2003 album Seeds: The Songs Of Pete Seeger, Volume 3.
 

Other cover versions

 

Bruce on the artist

In 2006, Bruce released  the album ' We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions' . The album contains Springsteen's interpretation of thirteen folk music songs associated with Pete Seeger. The project began in late 1997 when Springsteen agreed to contribute a recording for an upcoming Pete Seeger tribute album on Appleseed Recordings. "Growing up a rock n' roll kid I didn't know a lot about Pete's music or the depth of his influence," Springsteen later wrote in the liner notes of his 2006 album. He headed to the record store, came back with an armful of Pete Seeger records, and proceeded to investigate and listen to his music.
 
More info on Springsteenlyrics.
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
"As Pete and I traveled to Washington for President Obama's Inaugural Celebration, he told me the entire story of "We Shall Overcome". How it moved from a labor movement song and with Pete's inspiration had been adapted by the civil rights movement. That day as we sang "This Land Is Your Land" I looked at Pete, the first black president of the United States was seated to his right, and I thought of the incredible journey that Pete had taken. My own growing up in the sixties in towns scarred by race rioting made that moment nearly unbelievable and Pete had thirty extra years of struggle and real activism on his belt. He was ao happy that day, it was like, Pete, you outlasted the bastards, man!...It was so nice. At rehearsals the day before, it was freezing, like fifteen degrees and Pete was there; he had his flannel shirt on. I said, man, you better wear something besides that flannel shirt! He says, yeah, I got my longjohns on under this thing. And I asked him how he wanted to approach "This Land Is Your Land". It would be near the end of the show and all he said was, "Well, I know I want to sing all the verses, I want to sing all the ones that Woody wrote, especially the two that get left out, about private property and the relief office." I thought, of course, that's what Pete's done his whole life. He sings all the verses all the time, especially the ones that we'd like to leave out of our history as a people. At some point Pete Seeger decided he'd be a walking, singing reminder of all of America's history. He'd be a living archive of America's music and conscience, a testament of the power of song and culture to nudge history along, to push American events towards more humane and justified ends. He would have the audacity and the courage to sing in the voice of the people, and despite Pete's somewhat benign, grandfatherly appearance, he is a creature of a stubborn, defiant, and nasty optimism. Inside him he carries a steely toughness that belies that grandfatherly facade and it won't let him take a step back from the things he believes in. At 90, he remains a stealth dagger through the heart of our country's illusions about itself. Pete Seeger still sings all the verses all the time, and he reminds us of our immense failures as well as shining a light toward our better angels and the horizon where the country we've imagined and hold dear we hope awaits us. Now on top of it, he never wears it on his sleeve. He has become comfortable and casual in this immense role. He's funny and very eccentric. I'm gonna bring Tommy out, and the song Tommy Morello and I are about to sing I wrote in the mid-nineties and it started as a conversation I was having with myself. It was an attempt to regain my own moorings. Its last verse is the beautiful speech that Tom Joad whispers to his mother at the end of The Grapes of Wrath."

'Wherever there's a cop beatin' a guy
Wherever a hungry newborn baby cries
Where there's a fight 'gainst the blood and hatred in the air
Look for me Mom I'll be there'

"Well, Pete has always been there. For me that speech is always aspirational. For Pete, it's simply been a way of life. The singer in my song is in search of the ghost of Tom Joad. The spirit who has the guts and toughness to carry forth, to fight for and live their ideals. I'm happy to report that spirit, the very ghost of Tom Joad is with us in the flesh tonight. He'll be on this stage momentarily, he's gonna look an awful lot like your granddad who wears flannel shirts and funny hats. He's gonna look like your granddad if your granddad could kick your ass. ..

This is for Pete... "
 

Lyrics

If you love this land of the free
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring them back from overseas
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
It will make the politicians sad, I know
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
They wanna tangle with their foe
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
They wanna test their grand theories
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
With the blood of you and me
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
We'll give no more brave young lives
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
For the gleam in someone's eyes
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
The men will cheer and the boys will shout
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
And we will all turn out
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
The church bells will ring with joy
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
To welcome our darling girls and boys
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
We will lift their voice in song
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
When Johnny comes marching home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring them back from the overseas
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
If you love this land of free
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home
Bring them back from the overseas
Bring 'em home, bring 'em home