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Our National Anthem

This song is by Negativland and appears on the album Free (1993).

And I don't think it's right, I think it's wrong, I think the government should step in and conscript it, make cards out, fingerprint everybody, picture them, and then keep it that way. Because this country is the only country that lets in all the refuse that they possibly can get along with the good people. If the people of the United States had better wake up before they have their whole little kit, kit and caboodle go down the drain. Bread is a dollar and nineteen cents a loaf, and the people in this, this country are tired of paying for the other people that are coming in here and working, we feel sorry, we send money, we help them, but we don't want any more of those aliens, period.

You guys stand back
How many are we shooting off this time?
Boomer One to Boomer Two, standing by on Q-1, two five-inch flag shells
They're in range, here come the first two
Fire one

The bombs bursting in air
The bombs bursting in air
And the rockets' red glare

I beg your pardon?
Vulgar song
I beg your pardon?
Call that a song?
The well-known vulgar song

The bombs, bombs, bombs bursting in air
I beg your pardon?
And the rockets', and the rockets', and the rockets' red glare
Vulgar song

The intense patriotism surging across our country
Sending the National Anthem to new and different heights
All the way to the top of the music charts

Vulgar, vulgar song
Call that a song?

I am an American (urine specimen)
Listen to my words
Be very proud, here we go
Bombs, rockets, bombs, rockets (specimen collector)
You start thinking, before you even start, I am an American
(I will escort you to the toilet to observe the passing of urine)
Hup, 2, 3, 4

And I'm proud to be an American
Where at least I know I'm free
All he tried to do is obfuscate
I am an American
And confuse
I am an American

The bombs, the bombs bursting, bursting, bursting in air
The star-spangled vulgar song
And the red glare
Sounds more like a screen door
Its tail caught in a screen door
I beg your pardon? Are you dissatisfied with the song?
Sounds more like a screen, with its screen, caught in a screen door
Well, you know it wasn't meant to be sung while sober
Oh yeah? Screen door, caught in a tail, screen
I beg your pardon?
No, it actually began as a drinking song
Oh yeah?
Well, doesn't just hearing it make you wish you weren't sober?
Oh yeah?
Oh, you mean

Its author Francis Scott Key might have been charmed by topping the Top 40, but was this really what he had in mind?
(Drink up)
Bo-bo-bo-bo-bombs, bombs, the bombs red glare
Or better yet
The sweet, delicious coldness of the first bite of peppermint ice cream on the fourth of July
Or better yet
(Drink up)
Was this really his song?
(Drink up)
Don't you wish you weren't sober?
Who is?
Anacreon, a Greek poet who celebrated
Screen doors
Oh I do (drink up)
To be free
Yes, the tune to our National Anthem was lifted from an old English drinking song
Yeah? (drink up)
Doesn't just hearing it make you wish that you weren't sober?
Who is?
The people who wrote it certainly weren't (drink up)
Francis Scott Key wasn't either when he stole the tune
I bet I'd'a liked him
Oh, you would've liked Anacreon even more
Oh I do
Even more
Well, all the good things in life
Oh, you mean, uh
Let's sing it again
Vulgar star-spangled vulgar song
O say can you--
No no no, those are the new words, remember?
Oh, so who knows the new ones?
Ready, Gentlemen?
A song sung in pubs throughout England

To Anacreon in Heav'n, where he sat in full Glee (I am an American)
A few Sons of Harmony sent a Petition (I am an American)
(Now we stand by the rails and we see the hair-raising impression of how this projectile sounds as it passes by)
That he their Inspirer and Patron would be (the rockets bursting in air)
When this answer arriv'd from the Jolly Old Grecian (and the bombs' red glare) (drink up)
Voice, Fiddle, and Flute, no longer be mute (and separation of the first stage at burn up)
I'll lend you my Name and inspire you to boot (separation of the second stage)
And, besides I'll instruct you, like me, to intwine (drink up)
The Myrtle of Venus with Bacchus's Vine (let it be a holiday in your house)

Every American has at least one thing to be thankful for
(A cheap shot, just not true)
Still salute a flag and not a shirt
Good night

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