Songs of defiance
Added under Culture
It's hard to believe in this era of Biebers and Ushers and Jonases that the pop charts used to pack a political punch.
Barry McGuire's Eve of Destruction (penned by P.F. Sloan) was a certified No. 1 hit in 1965, and caused an uproar among several American conservative groups who felt the lyrics were unpatriotic ("The eastern world, it is exploding/ Violence flarin', bullets loadin'/ You're old enough to kill, but not for votin'/ You don't believe in war but what's that gun you're totin'/ And even the Jordan River has bodies floatin'"). One suspects that Miley Cyrus will never get quite this incendiary.
Although protest music doesn't register on today's charts, the genre still thrives outside the pop mainstream. In their documentary Sounds Like a Revolution, co-directors Summer Love and Jane Michener deftly trace its evolution over the past 50 years. The idea for the doc came to Love after a chat with her mother in 2003.
"By the time the invasion of Iraq happened, you had a huge wellspring of activism, millions of people marching, the largest pre-war demonstrations ever," says the Toronto filmmaker. "And I was inspired. My mom and I were having a conversation around that time and she said, 'Where's the music? Where's the soundtrack of this generation?' I thought that was a very good question."
Sources: Canadian Broadcasting Centre
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