LIZA JANE (MILLARD LAMPELL/PETE SEEGER) (1941)


Millard Lampell


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"Liza Jane", another hoedown with alternating vocals by Seeger, White and Lampell, opens with a traditional verse but quickly moves into its isolationist message. One source credits Woody Guthrie as composer of this parody; Seeger remembers writing "Liza Jane," "Plow Under" and "Billy Boy" with Lee Hays on Helen Simon's apartment floor in early February 1941.
Lampell remembers writing it with Seeger....
Ronald D. Cohen & Dave Samuelson, liner notes for "Songs for Political Action," Bear Family Records BCD 15720 JL, 1996, p. 77.


Lyrics as reprinted (with minor corrections by Manfred Helfert) ibid., p. 84.
ORIGINAL ISSUE: "SONGS FOR JOHN DOE" Almanac 1102-B (Almanac Records album 102), May 1941
[PETE SEEGER, JOSH WHITE and MILLARD LAMPELL, alternating lead vocals]


I got a girl in Arkansas, little Liza Jane,
She sleeps in her kitchen with her feet in the hall, little Liza Jane.
CHORUS:
Oh! Won't you... Oh! Eliza, little Liza Jane,
Oh! Won't you... Oh! Eliza, little Liza Jane.
I'm gonna marry her if I can...
She loves me 'cause I'm a union man...

Heard a speech by the President...
Wants to put me in a regiment...

I went to the draft and stood in line...
Now I'm a number 609...

Said in Congress yesterday...
"Take the right to strike away..."

They say that labor camps are fine...
To make the young folk toe the line...

I can't marry you today...
I can't afford it on my pay...

Cut the pay and raise the rents...
It's all for national defense...

Better make the government change its plan...
I aim to be a married man...

Dry your tears, get out your knittin'...
I don't aim to be no bundle for Britain...


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