“When pop music meets politics, the results are often thrilling, sometimes life-changing and never simple,” writes Dorian Lynskey, a music writer for the Guardian. His book, 33 Revolutions Per Minute: A History of Protest Songs, tracks “33 songs that span seven decades and four continents.”
Lynskey begins with Billy Holiday (Strange Fruit, 1939) and ends with Green Day (American Idiot, 2008). Although he features 33 songs, in the appendix he recommends an additional 100 protest songs. You can see the list of 33 (table of contents) and 100 (appendix) at 33 Revolutions per Minute on Amazon.
Here are some of my favorites from his lists (a clue to my age) and a few that he ignored. What are your favorite protest songs (whether or not they are featured in the book)?
From The 33
This Land Is Your Land – Woodie Guthrie – 1944
Give Peace A Chance – Plastic Ono Band (John Lennon) – 1969
Ohio – Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young – 1970
The Revolution Will Not Be Televised – Gil Scott Heron – 1970
From the Appendix
Edited – changed some embeds to links to facilitate page download