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New Duggleby/Birsan Song: “Sunflowers (for Ukraine)”

Posted by John Duggleby on March 9, 2022 in Music |

Like about everyone, I’m shocked and disgusted at Putin’s brutal assault on the citizens of Ukraine. And when I get angry, I try to get writing. So here is “Sunflowers (for Ukraine)”, inspired by accounts of everyday heroes fighting for their country and their lives. It’s a co-write with my friend, collaborator, world-class tenor/pianist, and Romanian native (now Chicagoan) Codrut Birsan. I’ll let the song speak for itself, in the link below and following lyrics:

Sunflowers (for Ukraine) By John Duggleby & Codrut Birsan © 3/2022

Like the dawn on the rise o’er the ruins, like the blood on my face and my hands Like the fire from the burst of the rockets, all is red across the green of our land Here I raced through the fields of summer, like the children of centuries before Here I’ve aged with my parents and babies, now I’m too old to run anymore

If my destiny ends with tomorrow, I’ll be home in the ground where I lie And in my pocket, the seeds of sunflowers, will grow in my place when I die

There are hands that stretch toward me with shelter; safe harbor in which I can hide But I can’t win a fight from asylum, I need ammunition, not a ride It’s a scar since the dawn of creation; it’s a hell fueled by power and greed When the few at the top flash their sabres, and the many below start to bleed

If my destiny ends with tomorrow, I’ll be home in the ground where I lie And in my pocket, the seeds of sunflowers, will grow in my place when I die

There’s a thundering down at the corner, rumbling up past the bar and the bank Crushing kids’ bikes and cracking the pavement, it’s the lumbering treads of a tank As a cold sweat encircles our village, and every last one fears the worst I step out and announce to the turret: “You’ll have to go through me first.”

If my destiny ends with tomorrow, I’ll be home in the ground where I lie And in my pocket, the seeds of sunflowers, will grow in my place when I die

Sunflowers wave their heads across the meadow, golden carpets as far as eyes can see Sunflowers reaching for the morning, smiling with hope for you and me

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Oh, MAMA!

Posted by John Duggleby on November 12, 2021 in Music |

I’ve been voted Madison Area Music Association’s (MAMA) Children’s Performer of the Year for the second straight year. Thanks a gazillion to all of you who supported me, and especially donated toward MAMA’s mission of providing instruments and financial support to kids and music programs in need. And if ya know anyone needing a rollicking […]

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Return me to my MAMA!

Posted by John Duggleby on September 30, 2021 in Music |

Whoop de doo! After being voted Madison Area Music Association’s (MAMA) 2020 Children’s Performer of the Year, I’m a finalist for the honor in 2021. And you can help me nab this years award, even if you don’t live in MadTown. Here’s what you do: Go to https://themamas.org/ and click on a red banner that […]

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NEW KIDS’ ALBUM: MY SPOOKY HOUSE!

Posted by John Duggleby on September 6, 2021 in Music |

So, last winter my Chicago friend, sometimes collaborator, Romanian piano champion, San Francisco Opera tenor and International Emmy Award-winning composer Codrut Birsan called me saying he wanted to create an original album of mildly scary kid songs with his melodies and my lyrics. When Mozart beckons, who declines? Our concept album, MY SPOOKY HOUSE, was […]

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New song: “Rosie”

Posted by John Duggleby on February 16, 2021 in Music |

Happy Fat Tuesday! I wrote this zydeco song a few years ago and play it live occasionally, but I’ve never recorded it until now. The timing is appropriate, because this year’s Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans is cancelled for the first time in 32 years. So I’m bringing the party to you– Laissez les […]

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My MAMA loves me!

Posted by John Duggleby on October 27, 2020 in Music |

I was recently voted 2020 Children’s Performer of the Year by the Madison Area Music Association (MAMA). Though ironically most of my kid’s shows this year were canceled because of you-know-what, this honor is the next best thing. To you who voted for me, thanks to the moon and back. To you who didn’t, book […]

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New Song: “Corona Cafe”!

Posted by John Duggleby on June 20, 2020 in Music |

Though the coronavirus is far from over, America is ending quarantining. Dane County, Wisconsin where I live is taking a cautious approach, while others are flinging open the doors with no safeguards or rules whatsoever. (A certain rally in Tulsa comes to mind.) If you partake in the latter, welcome to the Corona Cafe! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-LHfq-uuWA

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New Song: “Take a Knee”

Posted by John Duggleby on June 14, 2020 in Uncategorized |

This song is one of the quickest I’ve ever written. Probably because, unfortunately, current events have provided me plenty of inspiration and material. I’ve expanded the grief and outrage of George Floyd’s murder to injustices facing all Americans, everywhere. I’ll let it speak for itself:

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Here’s to Essential Workers!

Posted by John Duggleby on May 20, 2020 in Music |

My friend Jen Frank created a new advocacy group called the Essential Workers Party, and asked me to write a “Woody Guthrie-type” rallying song. I channeled my “inner Woody” and here’s the result. Blessings to all you essential workers! Lyrics follow: We’re Essential by John Duggleby © 5/2020 We’re the doctors and the nurses on the […]

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New Song: “Feet to the Fire”

Posted by John Duggleby on May 8, 2020 in Music |

My new song is a rockem, sockem gospel-tinged sendoff of one who needn’t be named– so I didn’t. Sing along with the following lyrics, and toss another log on the blaze!  FEET TO THE FIRE, BY JOHN DUGGLEBY You know your daddy raised you well to travel down the road to hell Treading on the […]

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