Sam the Sham And The Pharoahs
By D. S. Mitchell
Watching The Mailbox
My husband and I were married in 1965. My husband and I waited nervously every day expecting to find a draft notice in the mailbox at any time. He was in his junior year in college and did not want to disrupt his education. In those days there was a military draft and young men all over the country were being drafted. My husband and I were mentally preparing ourselves for that day we knew would come, and he would be sent to Vietnam. The United States had “advisors” in the country for at least a decade by that time. The Vietnam War was escalating in SE Asia, and the Cold War was growing hotter by the day.
The rhetoric of the politicians described Vietnam as a domino piece and if it fell so would the rest of Asia. LBJ was president and he had been increasing the American presence in SE Asia dramatically. By the end of 1966 we had a young son, and my husband had finished his bachelor’s degree. After many long and tortured conversations he volunteered for the Air Force and deployed to the huge air base at Da Nang, South Vietnam. The year that he went to Vietnam “Wooly Bully” was screaming from every radio in America, and the American soldier took it to South Vietnam.
There were major protests across the United States by 1968. LBJ sensing the country had turned against his conduct of the war announced he would not seek re-election. Richard Nixon said he had a plan to end the war. As Americans would see that was all a lie. And the anti-war protests grew. Seeing the people fill the streets outside the White House brought back those days vividly. Americans protest when American politics do not meet the needs and desires of the American people. When Trevor K. McNeil suggested “Wooly Bully” as the Calamity Politic’s Jukebox choice of the day, I said, “hell, yeah”. Here it comes, ready or not, Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs, in the long version of “Wooly Bully”.
“Wooly Bully” by novelty rock ‘n’ roll band Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs came out in 1965. “Wooly Bully” was written by the band’s frontman, Domingo “Sam” Samudio.” It’s all about the beat.