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Friday, December 02, 2005

The protest singer, he's singing a protest song

Jason Zengerle to Conor Oberst (of Bright Eyes), you're no Dylan.

Fair enough, but the title of the piece is "Why there's no good protest music anymore[?]". To me, that says the author just isn't listening to much nwe music. Off the top of my head:

  • Stereolab - their lyrics are packed full of protest against war and economic and social injustice. Yes, they're overtly Marxist and half-French, but they're still protesting.
  • Most of hip-hop. Once you lop off the Top-40 and silly macho bling shit, you're left with a lot of rappers rapping seriously about racial injustice, and economic issues. Public Enemy, the Beastie Boys, NWA, Black Star, Tribe Called Quest. Eminem's "Mosh".
  • Green Day - "American Idiot" ?
  • Sleater-Kinney
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Steve Earl
  • John Mellencamp - a lot of his non-'hit' songs are about the slow decay of the American mid-west.
  • John Prine - his whole career.

I'm sure there are a half-dozen more sitting in my iPod. No, they're not Dylan, but even Bob himself wasn't that Dylan his entire career.

(via Matt Yglesias)

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