I consider myself extremely lucky to have been 14 years old when the soul movement broke loose and gave me the soul greats: Al Green, Lou Rawls, Aretha Franklin ... and Isaac Hayes. I had been listening to the CD version of Hayes' The Black Moses of the Soul when my husband told me Hayes had passed away. I jumped. The man in the chain shirt was gone.
I've been listening over and over again to "The Look of Love" on CD and downloaded the Shaft theme on my iPod. This is my music. May God rest his "soul."
However, you really dropped the ball by printing something by Tom Hayden ("Dreams of Obama," Currents, Aug. 21). He may be correct (I don't want to call him right; it would hurt his feelings) about Randy Scheunemann as an adviser to Juan McPain. Of course, Hayden wants a progressive social movement (read: communist) on a scale like those of the past. That would mean millions dead, as in the Soviet Union, Germany, China and elsewhere that people "progress."
How can he ask for media reform when television stations have been controlled by the left-wingers for decades? A more progressive Congress would certainly create rising expectations, but for more government control. "Progressive" to all of you means the onset of more communism than we already have. I don't know why you did not put up photos of Joe Stalin and Karl Marx, along with Oh Bummer's.
I wonder what Hayden thinks about the integrity of Obama's "movement" that has to pre-emptively deploy troops to the streets of his convention. Now that Obama has chosen Joe Biden--who fixed the debate in the Senate that ignorantly supported the invasion of Iraq--as his running mate, has voiced his vehement support for the war in Afghanistan, and has promised to increase the number of forces in order to be able to "fight two wars and defend the homeland," does Hayden still think that the difference between Obama and John McCain is "the inability to limit the adventurist appetite for war," or am I just a latter-day nattering nabob of negativism?
You also perfectly encapsulated my basic thinking about war, a point of view I've had since resigning from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1964 upon finding that I was politically a pacifist and that they wanted me to kill innocents in cold blood.
I can just hear some right-winger saying, "Duh, (killing) is what the Navy does," someone who didn't know that I grew up as a officer's oldest son and went to the Naval Academy because I didn't know any better, and wanted to impress my father and didn't want to give up the PX and the commissary, or the fact that I grew up in the comfortable cocoon of "military life" during apparent "peacetime" (1950-1963). I never really examined the profession until I found myself sitting in a room in Bancroft Hall at Annapolis listening to Bob Dylan singing "Masters of War" and realized he was singing about me.
I won't study war no more.
When rock and politics mix, the opportunity for revolution is palpable but almost always missed. Too many established pop artists, like their wizened political counterparts, are too much a part of the system to ever really be a vehicle for significant change. For real voices, real rock, real change, you have to look to the young upstart politicians and the young hungry bands. The two came together recently in Tucson.
A grassroots band of politically active citizens organized an event called Barack 'n' Roll ("Tunes for Obama," Soundbites, Aug. 14), in support of Barack Obama. It was held appropriately at the vibrant yet historic venue Club Congress. Clearly, it was meant to drum up interest and popularity among young voters. But as the show rocked on, it was equally clear that, though there was plenty of high-intensity drumming, the interest and popularity of Obama is already firmly established among Tucson's youth.
A young man named David explained, "Man, dude. It's like this: No politician is perfect. But Obama doesn't strut into town like some cowboy. I mean, look at McCain. He's just like Bush. He wants to put everyone in a headlock and haul them off to jail, like some Wild West sheriff. He thinks you can bully other countries, and we just can't play that game anymore."
As David spoke, he grew impassioned and quite audible. A few others outside heard his slashing solo and shouted their allegiance. David, for a moment, was transformed from rock fan into an oratory rock star--spitting out a soliloquy as powerful as any guitar trance.
It was an all-ages event that had teenage rock fans traipsing around between sets. There were young families who brought their kids along who bounced balloons in the air as drum solos ricocheted off the walls. A few Sunday regulars lingered in the Tap Room, but they, too, were eventually pulled in--either into the rock show or the political discussion. Overall, it was a unifying event that brought lots of people together for one overriding reason: true democracy. No music is more democratic than rock 'n' roll.
In Tucson, the sound of change reverberates far and wide, and anyone caught in its wave can't help but set their foot to tapping, for in us all is an opinion, a voice, a power that we must express--and that is what rock 'n' roll is all about.
Peter J. Burns
In "Bug Zapped" (The Skinny, Aug. 28), we reported that there are only two union print shops in Tucson; actually, union officials say there four.
We apologize for the errors.