1969 Activist music

1969 Activist music

1969 Activist music

  • Compared to What (1969) Less McCann/Eddie Harris were the first of many to cover Gene McDaniels’ song. The President, he’s got his war/Folks don’t know just what it’s for.

  • Custer Died for Your Sins (1969) Floyd Red Crow Westerman was a country singer, political activist, and, late in life, a movie and TV actor.


  • Don’t Call Me Nigger, Whitey (1969) Sly Stone’s self-explanatory call for tolerance.


  • Freedom (1969) Richie Havens impromptu composition that borrowed from the traditional Motherless Child.

  • Fortunate Son (1969) John Fogerty’s comment on the inequity of the US draft system during the Vietnam War.

  • John joins Bruce Springsteen’s …

1969 Activist music

  • Give Peace a Chance (1969)The song John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s sang during their famous Bed-In to promote peace during their honeymoon. Lennon was joined by Timothy Leary, Rabbi Abraham Feinberg, Joseph Schwartz, Allan Rock, Rosemary Woodruff Leary, Petula Clark, Dick Gregory, Allen Ginsberg, Murray the K and Derek Taylor.


  • Mighty Mighty (Spade & Whitey) (1969) Curtis Mayfield


  • Monster (1969) Steppenwolf’s epic song describing American history from a different perspective: America, where are you now, Don’t you care about your sons and daughters, Don’t you know we need you now, We can’t fight alone against the monster.


  • Motor City Is Burning (1969) John Lee Hooker wrote it; MC5 had a hit with it.


  • MC5, The Motor City Is Burning

  • One Tin Soldier (1969) A parable about two groups seeking a treasure, but one using violence to find it.


  • Skeeter Davis: One Tin Soldier


  • Revolution (1969) Nina Simone’s response to the Beatles’ song Revolution



  • Something In the Air (1969)…Thunderclap Newman, “Because the revolution’s here, and you know it’s right”



  • Jimi Hendrix, Star Spangled Banner  (1969) The only instrumental protest song.




  • Marlena Shaw, Woman of the Ghetto (1969)… Won’t you listen, won’t you listen to me, legislator?


What's so funny about peace, love, art, and activism?