Protest Songs

16 Dec

I’m supposed to be going to a gig tonight where Agitator, darling of the Guardian this week, are playing, but it’s snowing outside and I kind of just want to snuggle up and keep reading my book (Freedom by Jonathan Franzen – really good so far). So, in honour of not going to the Agitator gig, here are some of my favourite protest songs. I know there’s loads I’ve missed out, so if you’ve got any good ones leave them in the comments below and I might do a part 2!

1. Agitator themselves. Scary video, great sound (love the fact there are no guitars).

2. My favourite protest song. I get teary eyed every time I listen to it.

3. Jessie J might be a new pop sensation, but I’m sure she has anti-capitalist, feminist leanings judging from these songs…

4. This girl sang this song outside Nick Clegg’s office. Super cool.

5. You can’t beat a bit of Les Mis. WHEN THE BEATING OF YOUR HEART ECHOES THE BEATING OF THE DRUMS…

6. Not much to say about this. Exquisite.

7. I love love love Kimya Dawson from the Moldy Peaches. Lots of socially conscious lyrics, if you’re looking for them.

8. Buffy Saint Marie is a legend, but we don’t hear so much about her here in the UK. She has done lots around indigenous rights AND appeared regularly on Sesame Street in the 70s. That is the mark of a proper 70s hippy.

9. Get inspired! Take this to your nearest Tesco…

10. Wow. Oh yes it will.

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7 Responses to “Protest Songs”

  1. Aaron Guy December 16, 2010 at 9:25 pm #

    Hi Hanna
    this is a personal fav of mine,

    John McCullagh – Dance on your grave.
    let me know what you think.

    Brilliant you have put these up you’ve chosen some real crackers.

    Aaron

  2. Aaron Guy December 16, 2010 at 9:40 pm #

    Go on one more

    thats it or I’ll become embroiled in this all night.

    • hannamade December 16, 2010 at 9:48 pm #

      Oh no, do become embroiled! these are great! I was thinking earlier how much some of the protest songs coming out now (Agitator and Grace Petrie above) really, really remind me of the 80s. And so we’re back here again.

  3. Sara December 16, 2010 at 10:13 pm #

    This is the only recording I could find of Colli Iaith by Heather Jones. Woman’s a legend!

    • hannamade December 16, 2010 at 10:30 pm #

      Oh amazing. Just looked for a translation and it was so bittersweet to find out what it meant! For all non-welsh speaking readers it says:

      Losing language and losing dignity,
      Losing muse and losing bardism,
      Losing the golden crown of society
      And in its place a shallow bastard language.

      Losing the old sweet-sounding strains,
      Losing the harp’s skillful strings,
      Losing the resounding choirs
      And in its place the clamor of crows.

      Losing creed, losing soul
      Losing the faith of the old brave people,
      osing everything pure and beautiful
      And in its place dirt and mud.

      Losing land and losing small-holdings,
      Losing Elan and Tryweryn*,
      Losing Claerwen and Llanwyddyn
      And the whole country beneath a lake’s water.

      Getting back from the door of death
      A song and faith and respect for the old language;
      Getting back the old heritage
      And Wales begins her own journey.

  4. Chris December 17, 2010 at 12:01 am #

    Needs more punk.

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