WHEN JOHNNY COMES ROLLING HOME – Lyrics by The Freedom Toast

We’ve seen this same war-template so many times it’s become difficult to believe that people still fall for it. The War Pigs have been trying to figure out how to stage a provocation that would allow them to justify taking us to war in Iran. Well it finally happened on June 13 – Two oil tankers attacked in Gulf of Oman; Pompeo blames Iran; Iran denies involvement. Here we go again. I already posted “Lie Us Into War” twice so it’s time for new one.


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By The Freedom Toast

When Johnny comes rolling home again,
Iran, Iran
We know he’ll never roam again.
Iran, Iran.
His legs don’t work, and his shoulder droops,
but that’s okay, we support the troops!
We will all think twice when Johnny comes rolling home.

When our boy comes back broke and bent
Iran, Iran
We’ll wonder why he ever went.
Iran, Iran
McConnell gets all his contracts done,
and a coward claims he’s the favorite son,
but we’ll all think twice when Johnny comes rolling home.

The White House thinks they’ll do the job.
Iran, Iran
They’ll never hear our Johnny sob.
Iran, Iran
They have no idea who attacked our boats.
It’s buried in John Bolton’s notes.
Trump will not be there when Johnny comes rolling home.

Again, they tell us there’s a threat.
Iran, Iran
How gullible do we have to get?
Iran, Iran
They tell us that we must strike back
to avenge a fictitious non-attack.
It will be for naught when Johnny comes rolling home.

We wait for Johnny to arrive.
Iran, Iran
He will be more dead than alive.
Iran, Iran
He joined to fight for the U S A.
Can’t understand he’ll get tossed away.
But we’ll all wake up when Johnny comes rolling home!


“When Johnny Comes Marching Home” (sometimes “When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again”) is a popular song from the American Civil War that expressed people’s longing for the return of their friends and relatives who were fighting in the war.

The lyrics to “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” were written by the Irish-American bandleader Patrick Gilmore during the American Civil War. Its first sheet music publication was deposited in the Library of Congress on September 26, 1863, with words and music credited to “Louis Lambert”; copyright was retained by the publisher, Henry Tolman & Co., of Boston.

Why Gilmore chose to publish under a pseudonym is not clear, but popular composers of the period often employed pseudonyms to add a touch of romantic mystery to their compositions. Gilmore is said to have written the song for his sister Annie as she prayed for the safe return of her fiancé, Union Light Artillery Captain John O’Rourke, from the Civil War, although it is not clear if they were already engaged in 1863, as the two were not married until 1875.

Gilmore later acknowledged that the music was not original but was, as he put it in an 1883 article in the Musical Herald, “a musical waif which I happened to hear somebody humming in the early days of the rebellion, and taking a fancy to it, wrote it down, dressed it up, gave it a name, and rhymed it into usefulness for a special purpose suited to the times.”

The melody was previously published around July 1, 1863, as the music to the Civil War drinking song “Johnny Fill Up the Bowl”.[8] A color-illustrated, undated slip of Gilmore’s lyrics, printed by his own Boston publisher, actually states that “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” should be sung to the tune of “Johnny Fill Up the Bowl”. The original sheet music for “Johnny Fill Up the Bowl” states that the music was arranged (not composed) by J. Durnal. There is a melodic resemblance of the tune to that of “John Anderson, My Jo” (to which Robert Burns wrote lyrics to fit a pre-existing tune dating from about 1630 or earlier), and Jonathan Lighter has suggested a connection to the seventeenth-century ballad “The Three Ravens”.

“When Johnny Comes Marching Home” is also sung to the same tune as “Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye” and is frequently thought to have been a rewriting of that song. However, “Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye” was not published until 1867, and it originally had a different melody.

“When Johnny Comes Marching Home” was immensely popular and was sung by both sides of the American Civil War.[13] It became a hit in England as well.

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11 Responses

  1. Jeffrey Magenheimer

    Here’s another idea for a song based on the Beach Boys Barbara Ann,
    Bomb bomb bomb bomb bomb Iran. Trump is a reckless fool and I can’t believe after the things he said about the Iraq war that he thinks he can go to war with Iran and that he doesn’t need an exit strategy.

  2. Maria Rainford

    This has always been a favourite song of mine since I was young, a long time ago but your version is simply magnificent and moves me to tears. Bravo !

  3. admin

    The website gets a lot of spam comments by bots so I have to manually approve the real comments so that the comment threads aren’t inundated with auto-posting.

  4. admin

    Thank you Katherine. I deeply appreciate your support.

  5. Nancy Roessel

    No more wars!! Trump has put us so deep in debt we may never get out and we are still fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. How many wars can the middle class support!? We get no help from the billionaires and corporations and there is plenty we need to do in our own country!

  6. Ruth Van Horne

    The parody project is amazing. It is at times funny, however, this one “When Johnny Comes Rolling Home” is heartwrenching. Keep up the wonderful work………you guys are fantastic.

  7. Sherrie Bast

    Sad. Powerful – Well done – Worth hearing and sharing and supporting the Parody Project for (and I do) – but sad…… The truth of it makes it only that much sadder. Thank you – as always – for all that you do to remind us, there are many among us who refuse to drink the kool-aid.

  8. Katherine Lake

    What does it mean my comment is awaiting moderation? I said what I had to say the way I wanted to say it.

  9. Katherine Lake

    Alright Don, this post completely broke my heart. Bad enough that you had the guys sing “Iran, Iran”. Those lyrics were, as usual, totally pertinent and evocative. I was a bit weepy as I scrolled down, reading everything you posted, as is my wont. Then. . . then I watched the Chad Mitchell video you included and totally lost it! Broke down in sobs! The footage they included was heart wrenching. Remember, it was my friends and schoolmates who went to Vietnam. Anyway, I just want to thank you, Don, for your discerning ear and sensitive heart. Please keep it up. I’m proud to sponsor you on Patreon.