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Build This Town Again - Halifax Explosion

by Griffin Songmaker

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Official Release: 21 November 2017

A song to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion which took place on Dec 6, 1917 (Nova Scotia, Canada). It was the most devastating man-made explosion in the pre-atomic age. See "More Info" below Lyrics.

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Music and lyrics by Gary Griffin, © Griffin Songmaker 2017
Vocals: Audra Raulyns
Production: Jon Hemingway
SOCAN IPI: 718455036


It’s gonna take time
to build this town
For the sun to warm
this shattered ground
To shape new growth
from broken lives
Bring back the light
in your eyes.

And a frozen quilt
can’t numb the pain
This sea of white
can’t hide the stain
We’ll need some help
It’s gonna take strength
to build this town

You ask me
‘When the devil laughs
do angels cry?’
I tell you
‘Not if

So slam my body down
Bring me to my knees
I will hold you in my arms
‘til I no longer breathe
And we’ll build this town again
because we have to.

And it’s gonna take time
to turn things around
To see the silver
in the darkest cloud
Untwist the vines
Find sweet release
Give troubled minds
some peace

When footprints fade
new ones are made
Like tides
that ebb and flow
Tears only fall
so we can

You ask me
‘When the devil laughs
do angels cry?’
I tell you ‘No,
not if hope’s

So, rise from shards and dust
Raise iron, brick and stone
If we hold each other close
We will never be alone
And we’ll build this town not just
because we have to

But because we want to
We are destined to
It’s what we were put on Earth
to do
But it’s gonna take time.

More Info:

Halifax Explosion, Nova Scotia, Canada, 100th Anniversary.

BUILD THIS TOWN AGAIN is a beautiful song released in November 2017 to help commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion. It lends a musical perspective through the eyes of a survivor to the utter devastation that occurred on 06 Dec 1917. It also highlights the strength and willpower of residents determined to rebuild their cities (Halifax and Dartmouth) on the heels of the largest man-made explosion in history, prior to the atomic bomb. Nearly 2000 people died and 10,000 were injured. In the aftermath, significant help arrived immediately from Truro nearby. As news spread, help came from Boston, Massachusetts in particular, but also from across Canada and around the world. The song was written to lend support to a group preparing a centennial event called “The Halifax Explosion: Eastern Shore Stories”. Although centred on Halifax and Dartmouth, the spirit of the song reaches beyond. It’s a tribute and an emblem recognizing any region, city or country who has experienced similar tragedy and has “risen from shards and dust” to stand tall and strong.


released November 20, 2017
Photo courtesy Nova Scotia Museum.


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Gary Griffin - Nova Scotia Nova Scotia

The beat catches my attention. The melody holds it.

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