I’m 75. I was born just before the end of WWII. So, I was of an age that as an undergrad and grad student in college and conservatory and in my early days as a young professor myself, many of my professors and colleagues were immigrant refugees from Nazi Germany (one from Communist East Europe). Their stories stay with me. One, quite literally, escaped out the rear of their home as the storm troopers came through the front door, leaving his wife so traumatized that decades later his wife always had to be in the protection of attack dogs. There are too many stories I could tell.
It’s hard for me to write this post because it’s supposed to be just a blog about music composition. But totalitarian politics, especially fascism, has always impacted music. Last night’s bullying by Trump on the national stage and his open favoriting of a fascist terrorist group–and a history of similar statements–compels me to give this statement of principle. Right-wing fascist philosophy must be uprooted and banished from America forever.
If you disagree with the philosophy of that and the songs that follow, please un-follow me, because…
“We must always take sides… Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
— Elie Wiesel
Since this is a music site, I’ll say most of what I have to say via songs.
Plus, a food for thought article…
And an article with links to a few more songs, some more contemporary…
If you’ve read this far, thank you. If you’d like to examine the history of the role of music in progressive causes, all you need to do look at the songs the abolitionists used in the struggle to end slavery. They’re still sung in churches today.
Ending this article with my absolute favorite Pete Seeger song! I love, love, love this song.