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Cold War Music from the Golden Age of Homeland Security
Atomic Platters: Songs from the Cold War

SONGS: COLD WAR



Francis Gary Powers was the U-2 spy plane pilot whom everyone remembers from history because his plane was shot down by the Soviets on the eve of a U.S.-Russian summit in Paris...

Civil Defense March (Heads Up America): Sammy Cahn & Paul Weston [1957]
Believe it or not, civil defense had an official theme song and this is it...

Down in Havana: The Goldwaters [1964]
Down In Havana, sung to the tune of Down In The Valley, is a rather belated knock against the Kennedy administration for its role in the Bay of Pigs fiasco in Cuba...

Guided Missiles: The Cuff Links [1956]
This unique doo-wop number which likens a woman's romantic advances to that of a barrage of nuclear missiles was recorded, appropriately enough, by a group of U.S. Air Force men...

High School Drag: Phillipa Fallon [1958]
A pure, nihilistic beatnik delight...

I Dreamt I Saw Khrushchev (In A Pink Cadillac): Walker Edmiston as Barky [1962]
This hilarious novelty tune was inspired by Nikita Khrushchev's headline-making tour of the United States in 1959...

Iron Curtain Has Parted, The: Don Windle [1953]
This song about American military men released from 'Red' imprisonment was waxed by Don Windle after Nashville producer Bill Beasley told him he needed a topical song recorded quickly...

No, No Joe: Hank Williams [1950]
Hank Williams recorded this musical scolding of Soviet dictator Joe Stalin under the guise of his folksy alter ego Luke The Drifter...

Red's Dream: Louisiana Red [1962]
A topical talking blues punctuated by harmonica that was inspired by the Cuban Missile Crisis. In it, the song's narrator dreams of fixing the situation in Cuba by giving Castro's beard "a Georgia shave" and bashing Khrushchev's head in with a bat...

Rockin' Behind The Iron Curtain: Bobby Marchan and the Clowns [1959]
The familiar Huey 'Piano' Smtih & The Clowns beat is evident in this song that imagines rock 'n' roll breaking out in Communist China...

Russian Love Song, A: The Goons (Peter Sellers and Spike Milligan) [1957]
A Russian Love Song is a rampaging comedic romp featuring the vocal versatility of Dr. Strangelove himself, Peter Sellers...

Jim Eanes, a veteran singer of at least two other interesting early '50s Cold War tunes (The Korean War-themed Missing In Action and its sequel song, Returned From Missing In Action), imbues this track with a calm voice of indignation over Communist enforced atheism...

This Cold War With You: Floyd Tillman [1949]
Only a country song could use the Cold War as a metaphor for a romantic standoff and get away with it...

Trial Of Francis Powers: Red River Dave (Dave McEnery) [1960]
The Francis Gary Powers U-2 incident and the pilot's subsequent Soviet show trial aroused so much media attention that it also inspired Red River Dave's hyper-patriotic sequel...

West Of The Wall: Toni Fisher, and the Wayne Shanklin Orchestra [1962]
An overly emotional track with a defiant tone about a couple whose love is separated by the Berlin Wall, an indelible symbol of the Cold War that, oddly, is rarely mentioned in this genre of songs...



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