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Playlist: D-Day 75th Anniversary

Compiled By: PRX Editors

 Credit: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Into_the_Jaws_of_Death_23-0455M_edit.jpg">Robert F. Sargent</a>
Image by: Robert F. Sargent 
Curated Playlist

June 6, 1944.

For more ideas, check out our Veterans Day and Memorial Day playlists.

Airborne Hero

From Kathleen Polanco | 08:01

A paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division, one of the most highly decorated divisions in the U.S. Army, didn’t understand what it meant to be airborne, until she experienced a humbling opportunity that will soon become non-existent for future generations of soldiers.

Cemetary_small During her service in the 82nd Airborne Division, Sgt. Kathleen Polanco despised her duty to jump out of a perfectly good airplane. It wasn’t something she fully understood nor carried with a sense of pride, until she felt the impacts of the Invasion of Normandy.

Memorial Day 2014: Remembering D-Day 14-21

From All Classical Public Media | Part of the The Score with Edmund Stone series | 59:00

Music from movies about D-Day.

Edmund_for_the_score_ad_8-2012_-resized_small In honor the 70th anniversary of D-Day we'll listen to scores from films including Saving Private Ryan, The Longest Day, Band of Brothers and more on the next edition of The Score.

HV104- Vet Vox

From Hearing Voices | Part of the Hearing Voices series | 54:00

Includes a segment called “D-Day Radio” (6:05)
Broadcasts from the planes, boats, beaches and newsrooms: excerpts from the CBS network feed on June 6, 1944, when the Allied Forces began taking back Europe (with additional D-Day online photo/audio from FDR, Ed Murrow, and George Hicks famous actuality from the beach-head invasion fleet).


For Veterans Day, Vietnam, Korean, and World War Two vets, recorded by StoryCorps, along with a Marine Sergeant’s recent “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” discharge. And we plug into the iPods of active-duty troops in Iraq (photo gallery), asking them what they’re listening to, and what their lives are like:

“Specialist “Laser” Lawrence” (2:08) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “Indestructible” by Disturbed from Indestructible. “You got to show people that soldiers aren’t just war fighters, they’re peace keepers too…”

“Bob and Carol Harllee” (1:34) StoryCorps

Bob Harlee served as an Army Chaplain for 18 years. In 1965, Harllee was sent to Vietnam, and he had to leave his wife and three children behind. One of those children, Carol, now 47, recently asked her father about his life in those days. As part of the 101st Airborne out of Fort Campbell, Ky., Harllee had to reconcile his role as a spiritual guide within a unit whose job it was to destroy the enemy. Still, Harllee says, his task was clear: “to encourage everybody to keep their faith strong, even though they’re in the midst of the most terrible thing that mankind can bring upon itself.” Bob Harllee died in Charlottesville, Va., several months after his interview session. He was 73.

“Staff Sergeant Treen” (3:12) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “Send in the Clowns” by Barbara Streisand from The Broadway Album. “They’re not really geared towards a democratic or republic sort of society… the biggest issue will be trying to keep Iran or Syria from moving into the power vacuum when we leave…”

“Army-Navy Classic” (0:26) Firesign Theatre

From. their series of of Jack Poet Volkswagon ads


“Prayers for Peace” (3:32) Claude Johner

From the 1972 album, Good Morning, Vietnam (Smithsonian Folkways FW05445). Recordings made in Southeast Asia 1968-1972: Radio A.F.V.N.: “Good morning Vietnam…”. The gong of the An Quang Pagoda (call to prayer – the gongs are made out of melted American artilleryshells). Lyndon B. Johnson 1968 speech, “Peace in the World.” The monk Thich Tri Quang Peace in the World. Black Gì in a bar, “What will they all do when they go back to the United States? I do not know what I will do. I hope I’ll be able to do something. I dont want to become a criminal. I want to do my two years and then get out of it. I am not a liar. Beside, I love everybody. That’s all.” The street (motor cycles and sirens). A prostitute, “I love you.”

“Michael Crowe” (01:05) StoryCorps

Michael Crowe tells his son about his sergeant during the Vietnam War. “I’m sure for the rest of his life he’s had nightmares, and he’s had a tortured, tortured soul.”

“Specialist Browning” (1:25) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “” by Limp Bizkit from Significant Other. “Their culture’s so different than ours, they always stare at all the females when we’re out there — and they don’t want to touch us…”

“D-Day Radio” (6:05) Barrett Golding

Broadcasts from the planes, boats, beaches and newsrooms: excerpts from the CBS network feed on June 6, 1944, when the Allied Forces began taking back Europe (with additional D-Day online photo/audio from FDR, Ed Murrow, and George Hicks famous actuality from the beach-head invasion fleet).

“Major James Lockridge” (3:04) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen from A Night At The Opera. “The United States Army can go anywhere at anytime or anyplace…I learned that during the first war. I wouldn’t want to be anybody that had to face the United States…”

“Staff Sergeant Ike Richardson” (1:54) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “I Love The Name Jesus” by Douglas Miller from (Sung by Sgt Richardson). “I think that we’re in spiritual warfare all the time…most religions are the same, they teach about peace…”

“Specialist Kreigshouser (War House)” (1:18) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “Raindrops” by Stunt (DJ Alex K remix) from Raindrops. “I think the country will survive; they’re a thriving, caring, generous people…”

“Leon and Angela May” (1:50) StoryCorps

World War II veteran Leon May tells his daughter, Angela, about leaving for basic training at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. In 1943, May was drafted into the Marines, which was integrated a year earlier. After World War II, May worked for General Motors for almost 50 years. He is now a visual artist, working in oils, pencils, sculpture and clay. This interview is part of StoryCorps Griot, an initiative to record interviews between everyday African Americans across the United States. In West African tradition, the griot is a storyteller who preserves cultural identity and passes it on from generation to generation. The StoryCorps Griot booth is traveling from coast-to-coast collecting these interviews, which will be archived in the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

“The War Machine in Operation” (2:24 excerpt) Claude Johner

From the 1972 album, Good Morning, Vietnam (Smithsonian Folkways FW05445). Recordings made in Southeast Asia 1968-1972: Jets, machine-gun fire from helicopters, air-to-ground pilot communication, artillery coordinates, artillery of 175 (night in the mountains of Khe Sahn). The GIs escape from the war in the dreams of drugs. “I was in Singapore, I bought this water pipe there… Marijuana ! they ought to make it legal.”

“Puyallup Assembly Center” (3:28) Jon Watanabe

Ed Kiyohara was interred at the Puyallup Assembly Center in Washington state during World War II, one of thousands of Americans of Japanese-Americans forced from their homes in coastal states to live in internment camps while American forces battled Japan for control of the Pacific Ocean. He later joined the all-Japanese 442nd Regimental Combat Team, which became the most decorated unit in U.S. history.

“Sergeant Crystal Halbert” (1:48) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtack, Iraq- Song: “Home” by Blake Shelton from Pure BS. “Home is sitting at my mom’s, waiting for her to finish cooking dinner. All the family’s starting to come over; my kids are running around…”

“Wayman Simpson” (1:42) StoryCorps

Wayman Simpson was captured in 1950, soon after the Korean War began. As a prisoner of war, Simpson came under the command of a Korean officer nicknamed The Tiger, who led the prisoners on a brutal, nine-day trek that claimed nearly 100 American lives. The march ended at a POW camp near the Siberian border. Simpson was released from the camp in 1953. The ordeal came to be known as the Tiger Death March.

“PFC Michael Dalere” (1:32) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “Undead” by Hollywood Undead from Swan Song. “I’ll always remember my buddy that got killed, how young he was. I don’t think you get over having a friend get killed for trying to better another country…”

“Kendall Bailey” (2:02) StoryCorps

Kendall Bailey talks to his friend Don Davis about his dismissal from the U.S. Marines under the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy. Bailey became a U.S. Marine in 2001. After five years, Kendall had attained the rank of sergeant and was considering becoming career military. Then one of his fellow officers discovered he was gay.

“Specialist Bowers” (2:31) Jake Warga

Soldier Soundtrack, Iraq- Song: “Kiss My Country Ass” by Rhett Atkins from (Single). “The army standard is supposed to be that females are soldiers too, but a lot of times we still get treated as females, we get treated differently…”

“The Abstract Universe Of War” (0:58 excerpt) Claude Johner

From the 1972 album, Good Morning, Vietnam (Smithsonian Folkways FW05445). Recording made on the aircraft carrier “Enterprise” (in the Gulf of Tonkin), including hydraulic machine chambers, catapults, and arresting gear.

“Petty Officer Roe” (1:58) Jake Warga

Sailor’s Soundtrack- Song: “Sleepy Head” by Passion Pit from Manners. 3rd Class Petty Officer Heather Roe, 20, from Cleveland, is serving on the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier, which was early on scene of Haiti’s earthquake to provide humanitarian aid.

“Let A Soldier Drink” (2:52) Jerry Lee Lewis

The killer does Sharkespeare, from the 1968 musical Catch My Soul, based on Othello. More info (with mp3s) at WFMU “Whole Lotta Shakespeare Goin’ On” and Dreamtime.

“You know, if anybody ever asks me why I do this radio show, I could just play them Jerry Lee Lewis singing Shakespeare. That’s what this show is all about.”
—Bob Dylan

Make sure to check Jake Warga audio/photo exhibition: Iraq: Soldier’s Soundtrack.

Mine Enemy: The Story of German POWs in America

From Alison Jones | 54:00

During World War II, some 400,000 captured German soldiers were shipped across the Atlantic to prison camps dotted across the U.S. Suddenly the enemy was hoeing the back garden, and sometimes, sitting at the kitchen table. This sound-rich, hour-long special combines archival sound and period music with voices of those who lived this most unusual moment in history. This program from Backward Glance Productions features host John Biewen. It was produced by Alison Jones together with editor Deborah George, and mixed by Ben Shapiro.

Otto_and_linda_1945_small When captured German soldiers showed up to work the Camlin family farm in South Carolina, World War II entered the family's life in a direct and intimate way. Suddenly the enemy was there on the farm, planting tobacco, building fences, and even sitting down for meals at the kitchen table.

Some 400,000 captured German soldiers were shipped across the ocean to the U.S. during the war. The POWS went to work on farms and in factories. And in small towns across America, two warring cultures came in close contact. This hour-long special tells the story of a remarkable and under-explored episode in history, through archival sound and through the voices of those who lived it. Residents of Florence, South Carolina share vivid recollections of the Germans' time there. We learn about Camp Hearne, Texas, one of the nation's first and largest German POW camps, where culture bloomed until ardent Nazi factions seized control. And we travel to Germany to hear former German POWs, men in their 80s and 90s, describe the repercussions of their unexpected stays in states such as North Carolina, Colorado, Kansas, Kentucky and Mississippi.

The piece is richly textured, and the tone varies as layers of the story are explored: The arrival of the POWs was a big event in small towns in Texas, South Carolina and elsewhere, and locals were fascinated by the enemy soldiers in their midst. The story takes a surprising turn in Segment C as we learn about secret U. S. efforts to teach German soldiers about democracy. In Segment C, which recounts the end of the war, we also hear about how the POWs are shown films of German concentration camps. Towards the end of that segment, we hear form a former German POW who is now a U.S. citizen. He describes how, decades later, he can't completely forget the Nazi songs of his youth, and shares the disturbing words of one such song. We also hear former POWs describe how their time in America affected their postwar lives.

Fields of Remembrance

From With Good Reason | Part of the With Good Reason: Weekly Half Hour Long Episodes series | 28:59

To honor the young men who sacrificed their lives in the D-Day invasion, Brigadier General Casey Brower takes young cadets on tours of the American cemeteries in France.

Cemetery_military_small When President Ronald Reagan traveled to Normandy in 1984 to mark the 40th anniversary of the D-Day invasion, a young army officer, Casey Brower, was with him and was deeply moved. Casey is now Brigadier General Casey Brower and takes cadets from Virginia Military Institute on tours of the American cemeteries for the fallen soldiers in France. The cadets are of the same age as many of the young men who made the sacrifice in the D-Day assault. Also featured: The Great Kanto Earthquake struck Japan in 1923 and killed more than 100,000 people.  In the chaos after the disaster rumors circulated that led hysterical Japanese vigilantes to lynch thousands of Korean and Chinese guest workers. Eric Han explores how modern Japan’s reaction to the recent earthquake reflects how that nation has changed in the intervening decades.