On 27 August 1963 Ledger Smith set off from Chicago and made his way to join Martin Luther King’s March on Washington. He didn’t take a bus or a train and he didn’t drive – he made his way on rollerskates.
The first two albums I have reviewed this month look at America from completely different musical and political perspectives.
One of the most endearing images of the 2008 US presidential election was the poster of Obama with the word “hope”, “change” or “progress” below. They were created by the street artist Shepard Fairey. Over 300,000 posters were produced during the presidential campaign.
You know there is a drought of good music when swathes of the music press tell you Marks to Prove It, by the Maccabees, is the album of the summer. So in the never-ending search for new and exciting music, I have spent the last month buying reissues and crate digging.
The protest song is back and its return can be dated precisely to 9 August 2014. On that day a police officer shot and murdered an 18 year old black man, Michael Brown. Since then, we have seen a number of artists produce songs of rage, lament and protest.