11:50:02 pm on
Sunday 14 Jul 2024

Down Here Below
dr george pollard

Fortunately, a Groucho performance was recorded live at Carnegie Hall and released as a double album by A&M Records.

I have that album. Hadn't listened to it or even thought about it for years, until yesterday, when unbidden I suddenly remembered a song Groucho sang called Stay Down Where You Belong. It was written in 1914 by Irving Berlin, who apparently was later embarrassed by the song's anti-war sentiment.

The song is sung by the Devil, lecturing his son who's bored in Hell and wants to go up to Earth to have some fun:

The Devil said 'Listen lad,
Listen to your dear old dad'.
'You stay down here where you belong.
The folks above you, they don't know right from wrong.

To please their kings they've all gone off to war,
But not a one of them knows what they're fighting for.
Way up above they say, that I'm a devil and I'm bad,
But the kings up there are bigger devils than your dad.
They're breaking the hearts of mothers,
They're making butchers out of brothers.
You'll find more hell up there,
Than there is down here below.

dr george pollard is a Sociometrician and Social Psychologist at Carleton University, in Ottawa, where he currently conducts research and seminars on "Media and Truth," Social Psychology of Pop Culture and Entertainment as well as umbrella repair.

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