2014-01-02

This is my first post under art and music.

It is about a song by Alvin Lee and Ten Years After.

I will share my thoughts as soon as I know I can upload the video

Thanks!

ALVIN LEE BLOG

I have always liked this song, and so when I read comments today, on its lyrics, by folks who were not around when it was released, in 1971, I feel I have to set the record straight.

I am not doing this in some know-it-all fashion; that is not my intent. It is just important to me and to cultural history, I think, to relate this song to the context of 1971.

I am surprised there have been so many misinterpretations. That hugh note, right after “Stop The War!”, should have been enough. It is one of the biggest notes in the history of rock music.

You see the point is that as of 1971 everyone between the ages of around 15 and 30 was totally enraged that this war was still going on.  This tsunami against a whole generation started by Lyndon Johnson and still going on under Richard Nixon,  had to end.

For us it was not a liberal issue, a conservative issue, a Republican issue, a Democrat issue, etc. It was an issue of the majority (those not involved with the war) attacking the minority (those who were) and trying to drag them off to somewhere they did not want to go.

It was not a peace song, it was not a song about Ho-Chi-Minh, it was not a song of the left; it was not a corporate song, a military song, a businessman’s song, or any partisan’s song. It was a simple statement: “Get the fuck out of my face Lyndon Johnson, and Richard Nixon. My body and my life belongs to me, and not to you”.

On that there was universal agreement. It was one voice.

Unity for a moment in time, captured by an incredible note by a true artist.

It is that simple. It was a high point of being pissed off. After the war and the draft ended, folks inevitably started to go their own ways, their separate paths, their separate destinies. Some ultimately became liberals, some became conservatives, some became moderates, some remained independent, and skeptical, though not cynical. But for that moment that note was like a hugh bell that captured the emotional state of the folks in America most deeply affected by the greatest foreign policy disaster in American history, those between 15 and 30 years of age.

For those of you from the here and now, making your own history, I would advise just keeping some rough notes about how you and your peers actually feel about what surrounds you. For sure enough at some point in time the liberal and conservative ideologues will either misinterpret what actually happened through ignorance (intentional or unintentional), or twist what actually happened (for partisan gain), and I have this feeling you will feel the same way I do. Though hopefully you will be better prepared and less naïve.

Hey, thanks for listening!

Phil

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