Artist: Barry McGuire

Eve of Destruction ~ Barry McGuire

Barry McGuire started out as a drifter, joined the Navy at 16 and was discharged ten months later as being “under age”.

He got a job singing in a bar, and in 1961 released his first single called “The Tree” that never went anywhere. He joined the New Christy Minstrels in 1962, where he wrote their only hit called “Green, Green”. He left the Christys in 1965 to persue a solo career and recorded the hit “Eve of Destruction”.

In 1971, McGuire became a born-again Christian and has since been involved in several Christian-related bands, each promoting an anti-war message.

Eve of Destruction

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The eastern world, it is exploding
Violence flarin’, bullets loadin’
You’re old enough to kill, but not for votin’
You don’t believe in war, but what’s that gun you’re totin’
And even the Jordan River has bodies floatin’

But you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
of destruction.

Don’t you understand what I’m tryin’ to say
Can’t you feel the fears I’m feelin’ today?
If the button is pushed, there’s no runnin’ away
There’ll be no one to save, with the world in a grave
[Take a look around ya boy, it's bound to scare ya boy]

And you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
of destruction.

Yeah, my blood’s so mad feels like coagulatin’
I’m sitting here just contemplatin’
I can’t twist the truth, it knows no regulation.
Handful of senators don’t pass legislation
And marches alone can’t bring integration
When human respect is disintegratin’
This whole crazy world is just too frustratin’

And you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
of destruction.

Think of all the hate there is in Red China
Then take a look around to Selma, Alabama
You may leave here for 4 days in space
But when you return, it’s the same old place
The poundin’ of the drums, the pride and disgrace
You can bury your dead, but don’t leave a trace
Hate your next-door neighbor, but don’t forget to say grace
And tell me over and over and over and over again, my friend
You don’t believe
We’re on the eve
Of destruction
Mm, no no, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
of destruction.

I know this song will leave a bad taste in the mouths of some of my Right-wing friends who feel the only security in their lives is to have a war blaring on somewhere in the world.  But maybe if they took some time and pondered what exactly it is we are doing to perpetuate this continual war-like footing and what it will take to just end it and learn to live with the rest of the world. (264)