Cece created an American Songline program from an era of American history often overlooked: our country’s participation in the First World War. While the songs selected for the program include many patriotic favorites — including “Yankee Doodle Boy” and “You’re a Grand Old Flag” — Americans regarded the war from a variety of perspectives, all reflected in the songs of the day. Some songs poke fun at military life, like “Oh! How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning” and “How Ya Gonna Keep ’em Down on the Farm.” Others capture the melancholy of people on the homefront separated from their fighting men overseas, including “Hello Central, Give Me No-Man’s Land” and “Till We Meet Again.” Even pacifism had a voice in pre-war America, and “I Didn’t Raise My Boy to Be a Soldier” sold 650,000 copies in 1915. An American Songline: The Songs of World War I is available for purchase.
The Songs of World War I was endorsed by the World War I Centennial Commission.