"I Was Only 19" as written by John Lewis Schumann, Kaho Cheung, Simon Luke Fellows, Dale Anthony Harrison, Shannon Lee Kennedy, Timothy James Levinson, Kenneth Spencer Sabir and Richard Tamplenizza....
Mum, Dad and Denny Were Some Amongst Many
Who Turned Up To See The Passing-Out Parade at Puckapunyal
Seemed Every Man and His Mongrel Watched Cadets Stumble
On The Long March To The Viet' Jungle
'Oh Christ' I mumbled as I Drew That Card
And My Mates Came to Slap Me on The Back With Due Regard
We Were The Six Battalion and the next to tour
We did Canungra, Shoalwater before we left, rest assured
seemed half of Townsville turned out to see us leave
and they lined the footpath as we marched to the quay
The papers wrote it up like you wouldn't believe
but we were looked into the future for a fast reprieve
The Newspaper clippings show us young, strong and clean
rock a slouch hat, slung SLR's and Greens

God Help me
I was Only 19

From Vung Tau the black helicopters, the chinook pilots seemed relieved at Nui Dat where they dropped us
Seemed like months running on and off landing pads
letters to dad, coz its like man he's sad
but he can't see the tents that we call home
cans of VB and pins ups on the lockers of chicks off TV
the noise, mosquitos and the heat surprising
Like the first time you see an agent orange arising

so please can ya' tell me doctor why i still can't get to sleep
the scars left with me
and night times just a jungle, dark and a barking M16
and keep saying rest in peace
what the hells this rash that comes and goes dont spose you can tell me what that means?

God Help Me
I was Only 19

sent off on a four week long operation where every single step could be your last one
on Two legs, It was sore to live, you had fallen with the shells, war within yourself
but you wouldn't let your mates down til' they had you dusted off
so you closed your eyes and thought of something else
Someone Yelled 'CONTACT' , another bloke swore
we hooked in for hours then a god-almighty-roar
Then Frankie kicked a mine the day that mankind kicked the moon

God Help me
He was going home in June

And i cant still see Frank with a can in his hand
36 hour leave in the bar at the grand
I can still hear frank, A screaming mess
a Bleeding Flesh, couldn't retrieve his legs
The ANZAC legend neglected to mention
The Mud, The Fear, The Blood, The Tears, The Tension
Dads Recollection Beyond Comprehesion
Didn't Seem Quite Real Until he Was sent in
The Chaos And confusion, the fire of steel
Oh Shrapnel in My Back I Didn't Even Feel

God Help me
I was only 19

So Please can ya' tell me doctor why I can't Get to Sleep, I can't hardly eat
and the sound of the channel seven chopper stills chills me to my feet, stills fuels my grief
and whats this rash that comes and goes, like the dreams
Can you tell me what that means?

God help me
i was only 19

Mum and Dad and Denny saw the passing-out parade at Puckapunyal
It was a long march from cadets.
The sixth battalion was the next to tour, and it was me who drew the card.
We did Canungra, Shoalwater before we left

So Please can ya' tell me doctor why I can't Get to Sleep, I can't hardly eat
and the sound of the channel seven chopper stills chills me to my feet, stills fuels my grief
and whats this rash that comes and goes, like the dreams
Can you tell me what that means?

God Help Me
I was only 19

Lyrics submitted by __TEEN__SPIRIT__

I Was Only 19 song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentAs a friend of mine said - 'it contemporises an important issue without making it lose any meaning' This is spot on, and they did an awesome job with it! Love it!
    hannah0032on May 30, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentFucking awesome cover of classic song by redgum
    __TEEN__SPIRIT__on April 01, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIts on Triple J all the time. I don't like it all that much, really.
    Summercloudon April 01, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentits a brilliant cover of redgums brilliant song.
    it gets the message of the devistation of war across to young people in a way that they can hear it and understand it unlike a long monotonus lecture about all the same stuff, that doesnt do anything.
    Billahon March 06, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is... i cant think of a strong enough word to describe it!! it carries such a powerful message about the devastation of war. in my opinion, war should only ever be used as a last resort, but it never is... my favourite bit is where they describe frank and the anzac legend. it makes me so emotional- i have so much empathy for the boys and men who were conscripted against their will! its just not fair! there's nothing right about war, and yet its still going on today... this song is a BRILLIANT cover of a BRILLIANT original song! to redgums credit, the lyrics are so straightforward and sincere, yet soo powerful!!!! as long as war is still a prominent issue, this song will never grow old!
    danagirl001on July 30, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentTears welled in my eyes at the part of the song that said Frank was going home in June.
    My God... This song perfectly protrays the horrors of war.
    The Herd are awesome, they've perfected this song as a cover and have shown they're a hip-hop band that don't just sing about the kind of stuff your average hip-hop band might sing about (eg. sex, drugs, alcohol, etc).
    I think this song will speak out to a younger audience now that it's been reconstructed as a hip-hop song by a band many young people love.
    This song has a powerful and important message.

    McMuffinon February 06, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentP.s. Didn't want to stereotype hip-hop bands just there ^^^^^ cos I am a lover of Aussie hip-hop lol.
    But often you hear heaps of hip-hop artists sing about such themes like sex and drugs, etc.
    Not that that's a bad thing, but yeah I'm impressed that The Herd have decided to do a cover of a song about war, not related to the sex/drug/alcohol/street-life theme.
    Yeah powerful song =]
    McMuffinon February 06, 2009   Link

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