Lorraine

Contributing writer for The Artifice.

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    How did politics permeate Pop Music of the 60s?

    The 1960s overflowed with social injustices, civil rights, and the Vietnam War. The civil rights movement and the Vietnam War took center stage. Activists exercised democracy in action, demonstrating their rights under the First Amendment. These protests were breeding grounds that forged a path to songs by musicians with a social conscience. Protest songs of the 60s were instrumental in shaping domestic policy. "Times They are a Changin", by Bob Dylan became a theme song of the civil rights movement. "Eve of Destruction" by Barry McGuire influenced legislators to reduce the voting age to 18 with the line, "You’re old enough to kill, but not for votin". Jimi Hendrix’s solo, spell binding guitar rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" at Woodstock was symbolized to be the most influential protest song of the 60s. What other songs contributed to change in America by utilizing American values?

    • I would recommend looking into Peter, Paul and Mary, Pete Seeger and others who collaborated with them for more on this topic. – LisaM 4 years ago
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    • It doesn't get any more accurate or pointed than Dylan's "Masters of War," or "Only a Pawn in Their Game." Dylan just added another trophy - the Nobel - to his shelf, by the way. Not bad for a guy who couldn't get a band in high school. – Tigey 4 years ago
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    • This topic would make a great regular column. There's so much ground to cover. Practically limitless, really. – albee 4 years ago
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    • Absolutely! I felt this way, but had to put the brakes on. – Lorraine 4 years ago
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    • To quote the seagulls from "Finding Nemo, "Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine." This should be fun. – Tigey 4 years ago
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    • This would be interesting to hear more about. Many American think of Creedence when it comes to Vietnam "era" music. I would like to know about other pieces that impacted the movement and vice-versa. – dekichan 3 years ago
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    • This topic is a very good topic, it could even make a great column. – jhennerss 3 years ago
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    • Very interesting topic. You might need to define pop music a little more specifically. Look into Tom Lehrer, a musician famous for his satirical songs about the Cold War. My favorite is a song about Wernher von Braun. – Jennifer Waldkirch 3 years ago
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    • I think this topic needs to be examined more critically. For instance, singing about social justice in and of itself does not make the world more just. Holding individuals and institutions accountable in legal terms is what can further the cause of social justice. In fact, baby boomers of this generation have been criticized for leaving the world in the greatest states of inequality since the French Revolution. Both the links below extrapolate on the topic of baby boomers and social justice.https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/07/generation-y-pay-price-baby-boomer-pensionshttp://www.huffingtonpost.ca/john-izzo/baby-boomer-legacy_b_2665590.htmlIt would actually be fair to argue the opposite of the topic which is that the music did not further any social justice cause at all. Social justice is more than singing "Do They Know It's Christmas?" Given that in some countries the majority of people do not celebrate Christmas, there could actually be a topic written on how some "social justice" songs actually reveal an "us and them" ethnocentric attitude by the West.Perhaps the topic could be described in the opposite sense of how music reflected the times rather than the other way around. John Lennon received an enormous amount of criticism for many actions and ideas which are acceptable as normal behaviour today. Also keep in mind that many people who fought the social justice fight gave up their lives and experienced incarceration. It was the people of the time, not necessarily the music, who created change in the world. Were musicians just taking the cues from people who sacrificed much to achieve freedoms we all enjoy in the world today?Did the times influence the music or the other way around?I would be open to hearing any responses on this topic. – Munjeera 3 years ago
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    • Reports on successful steps taken to influence political leaders would be both interesting and useful. – Delan 3 years ago
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