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RUBEN JAMES* *NOT to be confused with a totally different song with the same title by Kenny Rogers & The First Edition in 1969* This is a true story. The Ruben James (sometimes spelled "Reuben") was the first American ship lost in World War 2. (Written by Alex Harvey / Barry Etris) The Kingston Trio - did not chart, but they included it on their 1961 LP "Close Up" Have you heard of the ship called "The Good Ruben James?" Armed by hard-fighting men both of honor and of fame She flew the Stars and Stripes of the land of the free But tonight she's in her grave at the bottom of the sea CHORUS Oh, tell me what were their names?, tell me what were their names? Did you have a friend on The Good Ruben James? Oh, tell me what were their names?, tell me what were their names? Did you have a friend on The Good Ruben James? One hundred men went down to their dark and watery grave When that good ship went down, only forty-four were saved Was the last day of October, they saved forty-four From the dark, icy waters of that cold Iceland shore CHORUS It was there in the dark of that cold and watery night They watched for the U-boat and they waited for a fight Then a whine and a rock and a great explosion's roar They laid the Ruben James on the cold ocean floor CHORUS Many years have passed since those brave men are gone Those cold icy waters, they're still and they're calm Many years have passed and still I wonder why The worst of men must fight and the best of men must die CHORUS

    


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