Ring Them Bells. Duet: Mary Black and Joan Baez.


There’s a brilliant collection of Mary Black videos spanning over a quarter of a century here.  I spotted Mary B singing with my all time favourite American singer…the one and only Joan Baez.… on the Pat Kenny Late Late Show in 1995. Powerful stuff!

Ring Them Bells

Ring them bells, ye heathen
From the city that dreams
Ring them bells from the sanctuaries
’Cross the valleys and streams
For they’re deep and they’re wide
And the world’s on its side
And time is running backwards
And so is the bride

Ring them bells St. Peter
Where the four winds blow
Ring them bells with an iron hand
So the people will know
Oh it’s rush hour now
On the wheel and the plow
And the sun is going down
Upon the sacred cow

Ring them bells Sweet Martha
For the poor man’s son
Ring them bells so the world will know
That God is one
Oh the shepherd is asleep
Where the willows weep
And the mountains are filled
With lost sheep

Ring them bells for the blind and the deaf
Ring them bells for all of us who are left
Ring them bells for the chosen few
Who will judge the many when the game is through
Ring them bells, for the time that flies
For the child that cries
When innocence dies

Ring them bells St. Catherine
From the top of the room
Ring them from the fortress
For the lilies that bloom
Oh the lines are long
And the fighting is strong
And they’re breaking down the distance
Between right and wrong

Copyright © 1989 by Special Rider Music

Ring Them Bells is a live album taken from Joan Baez‘ April 1995 shows at New York’s Bottom Line. I mustn’t forget to mention the legendary author of the song. Bob Dylan recorded it on his 1989, Oh Mercy album.

An aside. Many of his most famous early songs first reached the public through more immediately palatable versions by other performers, such as Joan Baez, who became Dylan’s advocate, as well as his lover. Joan was influential in bringing Dylan to national and international prominence by recording several of his early songs and inviting him onstage during her own concerts.

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