Age? Eve? (Either/or) – of Destruction.

I remembered it as ‘Age of Destruction’ (well, it was a long time ago, and my memory has seen better days, and I was looking for a way to tie it in with my previous post), but in fact it was ‘Eve of Destruction’.

It is a song, an anti-war song, penned in the Vietnam war era, 1965, by Pf Sloan but made memorable by Barry McGuire.  I am going to feature versions by both men here.

Why should I want to do that?  Well, it seems to me that we have not learned anything from the mistakes of these past days and, if anything, we are moving backwards away from civility, caring, virtue and honour in our societies, towards the sort of barbarism that has always lurked somewhere within our roots.  It doesn’t hurt to reflect on that.  Mind you, it doesn’t help much either.  At least not enough to matter …and, as time marches on, whether it is an age or the eve, the destruction (and our own ability to ‘bring it’) looms ever closer.

Onward…

If there is any one thing I hate in the world, it is whooping Americans who, it seems to me, and this is obviously generalising a bit in order to make a point, have little understanding or capability to understand just what it is they are whooping about.  It seems to be a group phenomenon.  Nevertheless, I can get past that, and can see the value in what the song’s author has to say in this presumably quite recent, cosy, home or community fireside version of his own song.  It is an introductory commentary on current American culture and a little of his own history.

Next, and I’m sure that if you are of a certain age, this will be somewhere in your memory, a still moving and confronting version of the song, even though some of the lyrics are now dated, and the images historical but which should never be forgotten, by Barry McGuire.