You Can't Kill The Spirit

Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp Songbook
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The Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp Songbook

You Can't Kill The Spirit

You Can't Kill The SpiritThe Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp Songbook

This song book is a reprint ... of a reprint, beginning its life with us in Manchester over a year ago! Remember the little yellow flip-over? We began with a copy of one of the many personal collections kept by Greenham women around the world. Other songs were added. It was completed in time for the last December 12th.

Later, came the comments: why not an index? no music? no guitar chords?

Prompted by a need to challenge the invitation and sponsorship of a MAN to represent women's experiences in a musical narration - 'Gates of Greenham' at Manchester Free Trade Hall, we began re-working Greenham's song book: The intention was to present at least a part-record through song and graphics, a women's experience of Greenham, BY WOMEN, to sell before and after the performance. Unlike Tony Biggin, we had NO sponsorship then, the 100 copies soon ran-out. There were requests for more. And reminders ... weren't there still some songs missing ?! So ... here's the next edition!!

There's been lots of women involved one way, or another: women writing songs (and adapting well known 'men's songs); women inspiring songs, listening, joining in, collecting songs, singing for music- writing, writing-out words, collecting graphics from old leaflets and newsletters, pasting-up and collating ...funding other women to pay a Manchester Women's press. All round, lots and lots of us!! And none of us named: We had many discussion about this. Finally, we felt, because it would be impossible to name all women, many unknown to us, and the fact that the book is not a money-making venture, no 'credits' list should be added. All we can say is ...haven't we all done well!

You Can't Kill The SpiritWe hope to create a tape of at least one verse of every song for those who are blind or don't find the music helpful. This will hopefully be created at Orange Gate on December 12th. Copies of the tape will then be available from addresses below at £1. per copy to cover tape and postage costs... the message has to be, songs are for all to sing, and we can all join in, however unpractised our voices are, if we have the words and an idea of the tune.


from Greenham Song Book,
c/o 411 Manchester Road, Leigh, Lancs.
or 42 St. Hilda's Road, Old Trafford, Manchester 16.
Please send enough to cover cost price £1.50 and postage. Donations welcome.
Because sponsorship has been received, all monies received will go to Greenham.

[No information about editors.
Picture source: The Greenham factor, December 1982.]

[Some of the songs in the songbook from Greenham Common had appeared in the Anti-nuclear songbook published by Mushroom Bookshop and Peace News in Nottingham and in the A Greenham Song Patchwork.

Others Greenham songs were published in the undated Chant down Greenham songbook produced by the Greenham Umbrella. The rare Chant down Greenham has some songs not included in the Greenham Common songbook: Stand Up, The Universal Soldier, Masters of War, Rebecca's Song, Hard Days Night, After The Bombs Have Fallen, Power To The People, Down By The Riverside and Picket For Peace.]

Greenham songs are growing and changing all the time. This collection is got together by Hackney Greenham Drummers affinity group as a contribution to 'Sound Around the Base' December 11 1983[.]
Please make copies and give them to others.
(Printed by Calverts North Star Press)

The Danish Peace Academy


2. Brazen Hussies
3. The Chief Of Police
4. There's A Hole In Your Fence
5. Trident Trident
6. You Can't Kill The Spirit
7. Out Of The Darkness
8. Lilly Of The Arc Lights
9. The Vine And The Fig Tree
10. Here At Greenham On A Spree [Layabout Song]
11. A Little Help From My Friends
12. That's What Gets Us By
13. Bella Ciao
14. We Are The Daughters Of Amazon
15. We Work For The Russians
16. Building Bridges
17. Under the Full Moonlight We Dance [Full Moonlight Dance]
18. Lies
19. I Am A Witness To Your War Crimes
20. Carry Greenham Home
21. Swift As The Wind My Sisters Are
22. Da Do Ron Ron
23. With Our Lovely Feathers We Shall Fly
24. Which Side Are You On?
25. Reclaim The Night
26. The River Is Flowing
27. Four Minutes to Midnight
28. You Say Our Earth is Out of Bounds (A Song For Molesworth)
29. Our Digger's Song
30. Digger's Song (The World Turned Upside Down)
31. Chant Down Greenham
32. At the Peace Camp
33. We are Gentle Angry Women (Singing For Our Lives)
34. We Like the Flowers
35. Mothers, Daughters, Wives
36. Sarah's Song
37. Bridget Evans
38. Elsie's Song (Chat and Nuke you Talks)
39. Holloway Song
40. Lonely Holloway Prison
41. Oh Holloway
42. We are the Witches
43. Silo Song
44. Silo Action Song
45. Cosmie Green with Envy Song
46. Greenham Lullaby
47. Womanly Times
48. Smash the System
49. Stand Up
50. Peace Camp Newbury, Berkshire
51. Rainbow Ditty
52. Take the Toys away from the Boys
53. We don't torture
54. Who are the Witches?
55. Yesterday's Children
55. Linking Arms Circling Round
56. Leave us Alone
57. Muncher Song
58. Strangest Dream
59. Just a Little While to Stay Here
60. We are the Flow and we are the Ebb
61. Nightmare Song (Nagasaki Day '82)
62. Tomorrow
63. The Waters of Babylon
64. Your Children are not yours
65. Breaths
66. Bye Bye Blackbird
67. Now I'm a happy Dyke
68. Leah's Song
69. Non-Monogamy Song
70. Feet on Solid Ground
71. Don't Think Twice
72. It Ain't Me Judge
73. She Changes Everything
74. Women for Peace
75. I have dreamed
76. Silver's Dragon Song
77. On This Mountain
78. The Earth is our Mother
79. Bent Ladies
80. Revolution Talk
81. We'll Come Back
82. For the Police
83. There's A Sentry
84. Festival of Light - words but no music
85. Bailiffs Song - words but no music
86. Grenham Common (Oklahoma) - words but no music

About the song:

Author and composer: Naomi Littlebear Morena.
"Old and Strong" - A favorite with womyn's groups. Apparently written by Naomi Littlebear Morena and is adapted from the song/chant "Like a Mountain". A recorded version of it appears on Moving Breath's CD She Changes ©1991.

Also published in the Chant Down Greenham songbook and in Fredssangbogen.

Recorded in the Carry Greenham Home video 1983. Singer unknown.

Produced by Manchester Greenham Support Group [1983?]. Source: Tape in the file of Ulla Moltved.

In the USA ... Naomi Littlebear Morena.
Spare Rib No. 142, May 1984 pp. 27-28.

Naomi Littlebear Morena, a Chicana feminist musician who wrote the peace song 'You can't kill the spirit, she's like a mountain, Old and strong, She lives on and on', is planning a European concert tour in May/June 1984. She'd like to be put in contact with local women's centres, women's peace groups, women's groups working on racism and social justice, women's bands and theatre groups and the like so she can arrange benefit concerts on her tour.
In an American interview with Janna MacAuslan, Naomi talked about her work:
J: How did you discover that your song 'Like a Mountain' has been adopted by the women at the Greenham Common peace camp in England as a theme song or anthem?
N: Well, a friend of mine at work called me up and said she had heard thousands of women singing 'Like a Mountain' on a radio report about the peace camp. This was the time when 30,000 women came to Greenham to surround the missile base. Gradually, after that I kept getting more and more' people coming up to me with information and I kept finding out more about it.
Betty McFarlane, a Portland peace activist, approached me with the idea - of going to Greenham Common to sing my song with the women there. She started a campaign to collect money to send me there.
J: How long do you plan to be in Europe? Will this be a concert tour besides the Greenham Common visit?
N: The tentative plan is for at least one month. I think I'd like to work with women's choral groups there and other women musicians in Europe so they can participate in this exchange as well. It would be nice to have a strong back-up of local women to present the music. I want to have more intimate connection with the women there than a mere concert situation allows for.
J: Beyond your musical endeavours I know that you are a writer and a poet. Have you been publishing your writings lately?
N: Yeah.l've been working as co-editor of an issue of Calyx that will be made up of writings of Native American and Latina/Chicana women that will be coming out soon. I'm getting more in touch with things I've never written about before - about the racist experience and understanding how I've assimilated these experiences into my personality. I've been writing quite a lot. These writings will be in book form and hopefully will be finished in the fall of 1984. It will be about growing up in a racist society. It's more narrative than any style of writing that I've done before. The only books I've read lately are books by women of color. I've been real inspired by the books black women writers have been comming out with. I quess the inspiration has been growing from there.
(Spiritual and a round)

You can't kill the Spirit

She is like a mountain

Old and strong

She goes on an on and on

She is like a mountain...

(repeat ad nauseam)

inviata da CCG/AWS Staff - 19/12/2007 - 18:16

Lingua: Italiano

A cura dello staff delle CCG/AWS


(Spiritual e in tondo)

Non puoi uccidere lo Spirito

Lei è come una montagna

Antica e forte

Lei va avanti, e va, e va

È come una montagna…

(Ripetere ad nauseam)

inviata da CCG/AWS Staff - 22/12/2007 - 01:21

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