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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GeorgeH Raise your Banners (9) RE: Raise your Banners 28 Aug 01

Whistle Stop: why is it any harder to "spread light on political issues through song" than deal with any other issue in song?

Oh, and almost all of the "No Nukes" performers knew vastly more about the issues of Nuclear power than did the general public; it is a popular misconception that "activists" are ill-informed on the subjects which concern them. (While I admit they are often partially informed, being too ready to reject the "official line" out of hand, this still leaves them better informed than "the public", since the "official" line is generally to avoid informing the public".

Political issues are issues of humanity, above all else. As such they are the "bread and butter" of folk songs. In addition, the various folk revivals have been driven by the passion and commitment of the political left; without them we simply would not have the body of folk song with which we are all familiar.

Which is not to deny that there are some aweful political songs (though the proportion of "duds" is no higher than with "singer/songwriter" output in general). And, of course, there is a body of song intended for comfort and succour of those who are already converted.

A good political song has the advantage of stripping away the bullshit and leaving you with the essential question. I'll cite "Stand up for Judas" as an example (simply because it doesn't raise any CURRENT political issue) - as it happens I don't agree with its anti-Christian sentement, but it poses questions which anyone who claims to be Christian ought to be asking his/her self.


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