While many of the songs from wars in our past tended to lean in favor, Vietnam presents a startling shift in music. For the first time during a major conflict, the number of protest songs begins to outweigh the number of pro-war songs. 2 This can be attributed to a more unfiltered media presence able to spread more information to the public. The change in relationship between war and music and patriotism can be linked with the changing role of the media in the 1 9605. The emergence of television in particular provided more opportunities to question events as they streamed onto America’s living rooms.
Social unrest in the sass, particularly related to Civil Rights efforts and demonstrations, were broadcast frequently. 3 In the past information spread through newspapers and radio reports, but Americans had never actually seen the images beyond photographs and newsreels at the movies. Seeing the images tends to force participants to draw their own conclusions, and Americans were questioning authority long before Vietnam became their concern. Prior to that time many musicians were silent about the war.
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It was not until Americans themselves began to hang their opinion about their presence in Vietnam that many musicians in the record industry began to market protest. 4 As the music began to mirror American opinions more and more, the popularity of many of the anti-war songs soared. In fact, many of the tunes that are still remembered from this time were released after 1965. The protest songs begin to escalate with Tom Piston’s “Lyndon Johnson Told the Nation,” released in 1965. In the song, Buxton exhibits great criticism of the president’s policy in the chorus: “Have no fear of escalation.
I am trying everyone to please. Though it isn’t really war, we’re sending fifty thousand more, to help save Vietnam from Vietnamese. ” 5 The lyrics demonstrate the frustration felt by Americans, many of whom were unable to find a good reason to “save” Vietnam from their own people and were upset that so many lives were lost when war had not been formally declared. There were many other songs that did not necessarily protest, but clearly did relate and reflect what was going on in American History in the sass. Four young girls were killed in the 1963 Birmingham 16th Avenue Baptist Church bombing.
Later on after that, John Chlorate wrote the song, “Alabama” in response to the tragedy. Again in 1963, Bob Dylan wrote the song, “Talking’ John Birch Paranoid Blues. ” This song refers to the right wing group, the John Birch Society. Later in the decade, Retreat Franklin wrote the song, “Respect”, in 1967. Her song may have been taken as a political statement, but in her own mind her performance was a personal shot towards her husband at the time, for domestic respect. Her song and her vocals, gave the song power and meaning. “In the 1 sass, young people dad popular music-above all rock ‘n’ roll-the center of their cultural universe. 6 Music was one of the biggest way that youth expressed their rebellion throughout the sass. Rock ‘n’ roll was a rebel compared to the previous pop music that came in the ass. This music fused together counterculture, search for equality, anti-war, and drugs. Rock ‘n’ roll became 80% of all music sales throughout the sass. The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and the biggest of all The Beetles were very big names at this time. The Beetles became one of the biggest music groups and is still well known today. The Beetles were not just popular, but young people cherished them.
They were confident, rebellious, adventurous, and they had perfect style. Not everyone enjoyed The Beetles, due to their popularity. John Lennox said that they were more popular than Jesus which upset many people. This however did not change the way the youth looked at them. The Beetles became the most popular music group in the US and had the youth rebelling like never before. Besides listening to rebellious music, youth films were also a way to express the feelings of rebellion. There were many different genres of music, ND styles, just as there were interests and like among the audience.
Some people took their racial and gender preferences out on the music, and the performers. But some looked beyond that. Some looked more into the lyrics, and the tone of the songs. The songs helped betray a vast number of people’s emotions and feelings. People may have been unsure of how to think or react to what was happening in the 1 sass, but music helped distinct their feelings. Some songs even helped bring more awareness to what was really happening in America. Music in the 1 sass helped people relax, and enjoy themselves in he chaotic times, but it also helped some people protest against what was going on.