THERE'S A STAR-SPANGLED BANNER WAVING SOMEWHERE (BOB MILLER as "SHELBY DARNELL,"/PAUL ROBERTS) (1942)

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One of the most popular war songs... is Paul Roberts and Shelby Darnell's (Bob Miller) "There's a Star-Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere" (1942). The "somewhere" of the title appears to have a couple of referents: it seems to signify heaven, for, as the lyrics state, only the great heroes of Uncle Sam get to go there. The narrator states he'll see Lincoln, Custer, Washington, Perry, "Nathan Hale and Colin Kelley [a recent air ace] too!" This nicely unites the sense of transcendence with the sacrifice of the patriots. Later we discover that the narrator is "crippled," but he wants to "bring the Axis down a peg" and be a hero. If that happens, he will be assured a place in "that heaven" where the Star-Spangled Banner is waving. The somewhere could also signify the country itself or any part of the free world. In the second stanza, he talks of the "mad schemes of destruction" unleashed on "sweet liberty" by dictators. He adds that he is willing to die to "be a free American" and wherever that Star-Spangled Banner is waving is where he wants to be living when his time to die is at hand.
Timothy E. Scheurer, Born In The USA: The Myth of America in Popular Music from Colonial Times to the Present, Jackson, 1991, pp. 162-163

With Bob Miller, it's either hillbilly or it isn't, and no compromises. He tries to confine his offerings to authentic outlets, and this has caused him some embarrassment. When 'There's A Star-Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere' hit its third million in record and sheet music sales, Miller inserted an ad in Variety asking big-name band leaders 'not' to play it, please. And when the song made the Hit Parade he threatened to sue if it was played. He explains that his reputation as a writer and publisher was at stake. This music, he insists, must have the common touch. It is violated unless done by a true son of the soil, one to the manner born.... To streamline such a number is, says Miller, to break faith with his clientele.
DORON K. ANTRIM, Colliers magazine, reprinted in Dorothy Horstman, Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy, New York, NY, 1976, p. 285

Lyrics as reprinted in Dorothy Horstman, Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy, New York, NY, 1976, p. 285-286
© 1942 by MCA Music, A division of MCA, Inc.

There's a Star-Spangled Banner waving somewhere
In a distant land so many miles away.
Only Uncle Sam's great heroes get to go there
Where I wish that I could also live some day.
I'd see Lincoln, Custer, Washington and Perry,
And Nathan Hale and Colin Kelly, too.
There's a Star-Spangled Banner waving somewhere,
Waving o'er the land of heroes brave and true.

In this war with its mad schemes of destruction
Of our country fair and our sweet liberty,
By the mad dictators, leaders of corruption,
Can't the U. S. use a mountain boy like me?
God gave me the right to be a free American,
And for that precious right I'd gladly die.
There's a Star-Spangled Banner waving somewhere,
That is where I want to live when I die.

Though I realize I'm crippled, that is true, sir,
Please don't judge my courage by my twisted leg.
Let me show my Uncle Sam what I can do, sir,
Let me help to bring the Axis down a peg.
If I do some great deed I will be a hero,
And a hero brave is what I want to be.
There's a Star-Spangled Banner waving somewhere,
In that heaven there should be a place for me.

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