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Topic ClosedShould politics return to Prog music?

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The Doctor View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 11:38
Originally posted by Gully Foyle Gully Foyle wrote:


I doubt I would appreciate a 6-part epic on how cutting taxes creates growth (to fit in with the 'high fantasy' aspect of some prog)


I think that's the theme of the next Magma trilogy. I can deal with most political lyrics, no matter where they fall. They don't have to be left-wing for me to enjoy it (I enjoy many of Rush's lyrics for example). Nor do I only like anti-religious lyrics (although I agree with the comment about Neal Morse - his are too over-the-top preachy religious), but Yes, The Flower Kings, Iona, etc. all have spiritual themes in their lyrics which in no way offend me.
I can understand your anger at me, but what did the horse I rode in on ever do to you?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 12:10
Originally posted by Wanorak Wanorak wrote:

I personally enjoy a good political song ala Forgotten Sons and Gaza. I though Gaza was great because it focused on the effect the Israeli/Palestinian conflict had on ordinary people. I think a lot of times we don't address world problems and just hide our heads in the sand and ignore them. Bravo to Marillion for saying something important with Gaza.


Indeed. Music can be an excellent medium for sociopolitical commentary when it's done right. Political songs can fall flat sometimes though... Dream Theater's "The Great Debate" is the perfect example of politics in prog gone horribly wrong. I still cringe every time I listen to it.


Edited by Archeus - June 17 2014 at 12:25
What about dogs? What about cats? What about chickens?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 12:20
Originally posted by Dean Dean wrote:

If Peter Hammill and/or Peter Gabriel had sung songs in honour of P W Botha instead of Steve Biko would we like them as much?

No, we wouldn’t. Because they wouldn’t be Gabriel or Hammill if they did.

I remember that Hammill once said he didn’t think a song was the right medium for politics. He preferred to discuss philosophical thoughts in his lyrics instead. Even so, he made A Motorbike in Africa (about apartheid) and, much later, Every Bloody Emperor (about the Western invasion of Iraq, written just before it happened). Especially the last one is a favourite of mine, and today we can see the consequences (not of the song but the invasion) with ISIL taking control in the area.

He say nothing is quite what it seems;
I say nothing is nothing
(Peter Hammill)
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 13:34
Originally posted by moshkito moshkito wrote:

Originally posted by SteveG SteveG wrote:


 ...I agree with you on all counts. Not all prog bands could pull it off, but enough could. I was a bit tongue-in-cheek about Zappa's views which are not relevant to the discussion.

 

Considering the guy even went to Washington DC, and you can see it on the tube ... that's a rather strange observation. Frank was not the politically correct hippocrit of an artist today, and was pretty straight forward with his opinions, many times, not just once.

 

But we love Overnight Sensation, not anything else!
Zappa's political views will always be relevant (regardless if you agree with them or not). But since he can no longer voice new political views in music, I feel that removes him from the topic of the discussion. My apologies for being vague.

Edited by SteveG - June 17 2014 at 18:50
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 13:38
As Daevid Allen says 'Rock n' Roll is - Opium for the People' 
Help me I'm falling!
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 13:51
I would prefer prog music, specifically avant-garde metal, added to politics instead. 
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 15:37
After I heard "Beelzebubba" from James LaBrie's Mullmuzzler project, I couldn't take the man seriously anymore. He became a cartoon to me. Not because of what he was saying, it was just such a stupid and childish piece of hateful writing. And, the trombone made it even more ridiculous. There's a reason many don't care about prog lyrics, and it's because a lot of good bands write them very badly. LOL

I don't have issues with general political themes being explored in music. I did, and still do, find Zappa to be both funny as hell and kind of uncomfortably embarrassing, depending on how far he went with his humiliation lyrics. Sometimes it was just hateful, instead of pointed.

Can't say I've heard much that's very specific in its meaning, or representing any ideology. I think I'd prefer not to. Music is an escape for me. And politics used to get me pretty worked up. I've given up trying to figure out who the "good guys" are (to me) anymore and just keep my head down and out of it. So, I guess what I'm saying is that I'd like to keep those two things separated as much as I can. Smile


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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2014 at 23:01
Yes I would prefer that

Edited by ProgMetaller2112 - June 17 2014 at 23:04
“War is peace.

Freedom is slavery.

Ignorance is strength.”

― George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four



"Ignorance and Prejudice and Fear walk Hand in Hand"- Neil Peart



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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 18 2014 at 22:57
I'd say no. In the US, everything's split between the Conservative Camp and the Liberal Camp. Almost any choice somebody makes puts them in one camp or the other. We don't need either camp to claim genres of music. They've already claimed TV shows (Duck Dynasty), grocery stores (Whole Foods), restaurants (Chick-Fil-A), etc.

People can write about whatever they want to write about, including political issues. I just don't want to see one of the political camps annex a genre of music.

Also, I'm sick of people equating Christianity with conservatives/Republicans, but that's another issue completely.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 00:45
Originally posted by notesworth notesworth wrote:


Also, I'm sick of people equating Christianity with conservatives/Republicans, but that's another issue completely.

its pretty much the opposite here
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 01:53
I haven't read all the posts regarding this topic, but I know Henry Cow, Chris Cutler and Co. added a lot of political views within their music. Even Vander and his Kobaian philosophies include a degree of politics.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 03:32
I love Zappa's political songs, he went after hypocrisy on both sides.  Did he pick on one side more often?  Yes.  He never embraced false equivalency and I think that's what offends a few around here.  They can't handle it so they are dismissive of it.  He wasn't afraid to call particular people or kinds of people out.  His criticisms were always spot on.  If Zappa had been around during the W regime, I'm pretty sure he would have done some scathing songs.  He would have also probably done stuff critical of B and O, but it would have been fair unlike these relentless idiotic attacks that are coming from the opposition.

I also find Gentle Giant's The Power And The Glory to be one of my favorite political prog albums.  It has a timeless quality because it speaks truth to power without naming names.

In the in end politics in prog music is fine for as long as the music is good.

On a side note, I find the title a this thread a little amusing -

Would you like to see politics added to Prog Music

I think many of us have made the point that it is already there...Confused



Edited by Slartibartfast - June 19 2014 at 03:35
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 04:04
Indeed, Zappa had his say for sure.
Kraut rockers 'Floh de Cologne' used politics as a basis for their musical expressions too, although it's pretty much lost on non-German speaking folks.......(the music is great.....)
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 04:20
I would welcome political messages in the lyrics.

The obsession of humankind with money, to the extent that the desecration of our planet is secondary to acquiring personal/corporate wealth and the consequent prosecution of military action in support of economic aims (Iraq!) is something that angers me beyond belief. I think that such issues have been the subject of prog lyrics before, have they not?

I suppose being an environmentalist and a traditional Liberal (not the rabid, right wing "do whatever you want and **** everyone else type) informs my viewpoint.

But anyone who pushes a Tea Party standpoint can leave the planet for me.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 08:26
Originally posted by Hercules Hercules wrote:

I would welcome political messages in the lyrics.

But anyone who pushes a Tea Party standpoint can leave the planet for me.


Would you therefore only permit songs that had a political orientation you agree with? You can see where I'm going with this I'm sure.... i.e. would your forced repatriation of right wingers to say, Uranus be deemed any less intolerant that their forced repatriation of left wingers to say, the Red Planet?Wink

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 08:48
^To be honest, and much as I love freedom of expression, Tea Party prog lyrics would definitely invite invitation to go to Uranus, or Theiranus, or whichever Anus we can find that can tolerate their bigotry any more than it can an enema. 

And Texas prog can join them too. 
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 08:58
C'mon T, you wouldn't listen to an album with catchy song titles like "I Hate Taxes" and the side-long "Obamacare is the Work of the Devil"?

Speaking of repatriation to another planet, I've been hoping to be repatriated since my youth, to no avail. Guess I need to join the Tea Party to get that honor.   
I can understand your anger at me, but what did the horse I rode in on ever do to you?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 09:07
I just noticed that "Taxes" and "Texas" share the same words. This surely means something. And I hope Jon Anderson can exploit it in a song about rainbow-colored rhinos 
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 09:15
^ Somewhere Over the Texas Rhino Taxes Way Up High (Man)
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 19 2014 at 09:24
 


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