The first time I realized that there is such a thing as a “protest” song was in high school. One of the films they were showing about the civil rights movement kept coming back to people belting out “We Shall Overcome”. As a young man, I was so moved. That people can use music to rally around an idea that brings about change. That’s powerful.
In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day (January 20th this year), Betony and I made a playlist filled with songs about changing the world around us for the better. Here’s our current list. What would you add? Feel free to put song suggestions in the comments!
In Protest Playlist
Coal War- Joshua James
Better Way- Ben Harper
Freedom- Rage Against the Machine
Give Peace a Chance- John Lennon
Talkin Bout a Revolution- Tracy Chapman
Man in Black- Johnny Cash
Ballad of Paul and Sheila- Mason Jennings
The Times They are A-Changin- Bob Dylan
We Shall Overcome- Martin Luthar King Address
Redemption Song- Bob Marley and the Wailors
We put the question to friends on facebook: what would you put on this playlist? We published the results on Betony Coons Spotify account. It’s called “In Protest”. Come take a listen!