‘Spirit Of 76 (July 1985 Marcus Studios rough mix)’ [7:03] (Macdonald/Peters), The Alarm
Lead Vocals:Mike Peters
Well I find myself in reverie 'Bout what we might have had And what might have been We had something going once That was such a long, long time ago It was way back in '76 Our friendship formed of pure innocence We first met in Mathew Street Where we heard something that would set us free A sign stands over a door, it says "Four lads who shook the world" In the depths of those heady nights We would dream of those bright lights Oh my friend, Oh my friend, Oh my friend And my friend John, he went away And he made some mistakes Spent time in Walton jail And now when I see him we still talk But there's no light shining in his eyes And Susie, she was seventeen And more beauty in this world I swear you'll never see I was gonna be king And she was gonna be queen But now all she does is hide behind the tears If there was more sense in this world And work wasn't so hard to find You would not be going your way I would not be going mine Oh my friend, Oh my friend, Oh my friend Somewhere tonight out on the street Somewhere beneath this city's heat In the eyes of strangers who pass me by Life is cruel and so unkind Oh, the SPIRIT OF '76 And Pete has seen his dreams come true But that don't make him no hero He's just one of the lucky few If a man can't change the world these days I still believe a man can change his own destiny But the price is high that has got to be paid For everyone who survives there are many who fail I've seen my friends caught out in that crossfire All their dreams and hopes smashed on the funeral pyre I will never give in until the day I die I'll get myself some independence Carve out a future with my two bare hands Oh my friend, Oh my friend, Oh my friend Somewhere tonight out on the street Somewhere beneath this city's heat In the eyes of strangers who pass me by Life is cruel and so unkind Oh, the SPIRIT OF '76 Mersey lights shine in the distance Same as they did for us then Mersey lights shine bright in the distance Where are you now my friend? You see some nights when I can't sleep I still think of you Of all the promises, all the dreams we shared I know those lights still call to you I can hear them now I can hear them now (Still shining for us) (Let em shine) (Let em shine) Lights are still shining Somewhere tonight out on the street Somewhere beneath this city's heat In the eyes of strangers who pass me by Oh life is cruel and so unkind Oh, where's it gone The SPIRIT OF '76
:A rough mix of the final version.
Recorded at Marcus Studios, Westbourne Grovem London, June – July 1985.
Mixed at Marcus Studios 15th July 1985.
Mike Peters Notes
:The song that means the most to me on Strength is “Spirit Of ’76” because it’s an autobiographical story of me growing. I didn’t want to write it for this record because I didn’t think I’d yet acquired the skill, but the rest of the band loved it and pushed me through it. I like it because it doesn’t make any illusions. It’s a real-life story about real-life people in a real-life place.
(Strength Tour Program, 1985)
The song is about the most important time in my life. I had my whole
life mapped out before me and life seemed pretty unexciting. Then I
saw bands like The Jam and The Buzzcocks and U2 and things and they really had an impact on my life. It gave me the courgae to leave
something behind, and go out and try to build a new life for myself, on be where I’d be a lot happier and one that was a lot more exciting. It’s a take on that sort of struggle and the fight to establish yourself in this world on your own terms. The music that I heard was the motivation for that, and I tried to capture that feeling in the song.
It involves my friends, my story.
(1985, Backstage Pass 91X)
Dave Sharp Notes
Eddie MacDonald Notes
Nigel Twist Notes