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Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative

Related threads:
Folk Songs for Conservatives (80)
Right Wing Folksongs (86)
right-wing 'folk' (44)
Lyr Req: Conservative Song (5)
Republican or Conservative folk singers (97)
Studio 360 segment: right-wing folk (37)
Lyr Add: Conservative ballads (19)
Folk Songs of the Far Right Wing (36)


GUEST,Rita 03 Jan 16 - 07:35 PM
Hollowfox 03 Jan 16 - 07:57 PM
GUEST 03 Jan 16 - 08:09 PM
Jack Campin 03 Jan 16 - 08:46 PM
GUEST 03 Jan 16 - 08:49 PM
GUEST 03 Jan 16 - 09:21 PM
GUEST,same guest as above 03 Jan 16 - 09:22 PM
GUEST 03 Jan 16 - 09:30 PM
GUEST,Guest of 09:22 PM 03 Jan 16 - 09:42 PM
GUEST 03 Jan 16 - 09:55 PM
GUEST,Guest of 09:22 PM 03 Jan 16 - 10:12 PM
GUEST 03 Jan 16 - 10:18 PM
Joe Offer 03 Jan 16 - 11:18 PM
GUEST,HiLo 03 Jan 16 - 11:24 PM
Joe Offer 03 Jan 16 - 11:36 PM
Acme 03 Jan 16 - 11:50 PM
GUEST,Sandy 04 Jan 16 - 12:05 AM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 04 Jan 16 - 01:13 AM
GUEST,FloraG 04 Jan 16 - 03:23 AM
The Sandman 04 Jan 16 - 03:29 AM
GUEST,Musket 04 Jan 16 - 03:52 AM
MGM·Lion 04 Jan 16 - 04:01 AM
GUEST,Howard Jones 04 Jan 16 - 04:58 AM
PHJim 04 Jan 16 - 05:31 AM
Thompson 04 Jan 16 - 05:40 AM
GUEST,Allan Conn 04 Jan 16 - 06:50 AM
GUEST,Jim Knowledge 04 Jan 16 - 07:22 AM
Jack Campin 04 Jan 16 - 08:02 AM
Vic Smith 04 Jan 16 - 08:13 AM
John MacKenzie 04 Jan 16 - 09:13 AM
voyager 04 Jan 16 - 09:48 AM
GUEST,HiLo 04 Jan 16 - 10:55 AM
akenaton 04 Jan 16 - 11:40 AM
akenaton 04 Jan 16 - 11:45 AM
akenaton 04 Jan 16 - 11:52 AM
GUEST,Ellen Vannin 04 Jan 16 - 01:29 PM
The Sandman 04 Jan 16 - 01:30 PM
Jack Campin 04 Jan 16 - 01:58 PM
beeliner 04 Jan 16 - 02:59 PM
Vic Smith 04 Jan 16 - 03:07 PM
GUEST 04 Jan 16 - 03:14 PM
GUEST 04 Jan 16 - 03:25 PM
Mark Clark 04 Jan 16 - 03:30 PM
The Sandman 04 Jan 16 - 03:43 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 04 Jan 16 - 03:55 PM
Vic Smith 04 Jan 16 - 04:03 PM
GUEST,mauvepink 04 Jan 16 - 06:38 PM
Jack Campin 04 Jan 16 - 06:57 PM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 04 Jan 16 - 07:44 PM
GUEST,DTM 04 Jan 16 - 08:12 PM
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Subject: Folk Singers/Politically Conservative?
From: GUEST,Rita
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 07:35 PM

I was wondering if there are any folk singers, known or somewhat well known who are more conservative politically? I only know of singers who are or lean more towards the liberal side (politically.)
Their songs reflect that or when seeing them in concert they talk about it to some degree.
Of course, if any are more conservative - they may not discuss it or make it known. Just curious.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: Hollowfox
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 07:57 PM

In an interview in 1964, the late Theodore Bikel remarked that it's hard to find a right wing folksinger. I know politically conservative, sane storytellers, though.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 08:09 PM

Is there a problem with being a folksinger on the "political right" ?


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: Jack Campin
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 08:46 PM

Isn't that what most country singers are?


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 08:49 PM

Really, quite a sweeping statement Stereotyping perhaps?

Not using our Mudcat name on this one? Why not, pray tell?


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 09:21 PM

As far as I can tell the only discernible between folk singers and traditional bluegrass bands is the songs they play and where they stand politically. Even if, say, some of Seeger's songs may be more "bluegrassy" than another band, he is always considered "folk" because he's more likely to sing "folk" songs and they're more likely not to. Traditionally folk singers are liberal and country/bluegrass singers are conservative. Sometimes, the difference is in their political leanings or place-of-origin only.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST,same guest as above
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 09:22 PM

But more on topic, here is a link

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/nov/13/folk-music-conservative-political-tool/?page=all


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 09:30 PM

Folk singers are liberal, country singers are not. Am I reading this correctly so where does Mike Seeger fit ?


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST,Guest of 09:22 PM
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 09:42 PM

PETE Seeger, not Mike


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 09:55 PM

Mike Seeger is liberal, he sings country music, was my point. I just find that putting people into these kinds of slots is a very narrow view. There are many people in all kinds of music who have different world views, it,s called diversity.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST,Guest of 09:22 PM
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 10:12 PM

We're talking stereotypically here, are we not? The point of this post was to find exceptions to the stereotype.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conserv
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 10:18 PM

Exceptions to stereotypes is a contradiction of terms. It implies that the stereotype is the correct view. It isn,t of course, that is my point. I have to say that I find this liberal and conservative thing a very American construct.. In means different things in different places.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Joe Offer
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 11:18 PM

It really helps for posters to identify themselves by a consistent name. All these anonymous Guest posts are confusing. Yes, I know that "the rules" now allow anonymous posting, but I think it's confusing and an impediment to discussion.

I would say that the vast majority of those who sing the second generation (revival) of what is considered to be "folk" music, are politically liberal. The majority is large enough and vocal enough to scare the few conservatives away. In addition, the "folk revival" was home to left-leaning political and labor songs. I have met conservatives at song gatherings. They keep quiet about their politics. Some have told me they feel uncomfortable by the anti-conservative conversation that surrounds them.

On the other hand, many of the sources of traditional songs were political conservatives - the singers the collectors collected from.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 11:24 PM

Very, very sorry.... I a a guest one a two others. Didn't,t mean to be anonymous, was just not paying attention. Apologies once again.

Okay. Tossed cookies is an acceptable reason for anonymity. :)


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Joe Offer
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 11:36 PM

Sometimes, I think that people who know old songs handed down through their families, are scared off by the liberal politics of folkies, and then these valuable sources don't have a chance to share their music with us.
Liberal political music is an important part of the folk tradition, but I think it can be off-putting to some.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Acme
Date: 03 Jan 16 - 11:50 PM

. . . and liberating to others!


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Sandy
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 12:05 AM

Joe's comment in last post, "Liberal political music is an important part of the folk tradition, but I think it can be off-putting to some."   This is quite true. I used to see Joan Baez in concerts a number of times over the years because I loved her voice, just loved to hear her sing besides just listening to her albums at home. So although I knew she would probably get into her political views at the concert, I still went to hear her sing. However, sometimes she would be "off-putting" and sometimes I felt she could go on a bit too much at a concert venue about her politics during the 60's & 70's.
And yes, I did know this about her beforehand but was just hoping at each concert that she would not go into this big political talk too much. Even though I was leaning more towards conservative views, I still would not want to hear a singer go on too much on their conservative views either at a concert.

I loved to hear her sing - she was one of my favorite folk singers.
Her voice to me was just stunning and this beautiful soaring soprano folk voice in the 60's, 70's, etc.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 01:13 AM

"I have to say that I find this liberal and conservative thing a very American construct"

Non-Americans may find the 1992 documentary "Bob Roberts" informative on the subject of Hollywood, conservative politics and folk music in particular. A (stereotyped) Catholic is conservative on birth control and liberal on capital punishment. AME Baptists are pro-civil rights if that doesn't include the LGBT community, etc. So to paraphrase Butterworth, "The measure of a man's liberalism is by how much we agree."

Arlo Guthrie is a card-carrying Republican. So there is that:

"I haven't shifted my thinking at all. I've shifted my membership to where it might make a difference. Anyone who knows me knows what my political opinions are. They've been basically the same for over 50 years. A stance on an issue cannot, and ought not, be made simply by identifying with others who may have other opinions. People who bad mouth me because I'm a 'this' or a 'that' should remember what the McCarthy era was all about -- guilt by association. It's not right, and it's not American. And I don't mind making a point of that from time to time. In fact, I enjoy it."


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,FloraG
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:23 AM

I think to be on the folk scene you have to be community minded - I'm not sure if that is classified as right/left wing.
In a session you play things people want to hear or join in with. At a concert different tunes/songs to please. We try to only do local barn dances - this keeps the cost down for the ( mostly )charities as well an minimising folk miles. Is this left/ right?
FloraG.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:29 AM

Mike Seeger sang old timey music not country and western. Earl Scruggs Bluegrass at one point opposed the Vietnam war.,political positions are not always clear cut it is possible for a person to be right wing on one subject and left on another


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Musket
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:52 AM

Without kick starting the "what is folk" nonsense debate again, I think a better way of differentiating is to ask who performs to their personal creed and who performs to entertain?

I have no brief for Lord Barnard but used to sing about him. Reed cutting in Norfolk is something I know sod all about but his daughter provided a cracking song.

Also, you mellow with age. In my teens and early twenties I might have been slightly more political and left leaning. These days, songs of social justice only stay in the list if they are narrow enough not to alienate anybody in the audience. We can all sing Vin Garbutt's excellent City of Angels, but one of the business entrepreneurs typical of those demonised in the song now owns my bloody football club!

A better example of course would be Martin Carthy playing "Siege of Delhi."


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 04:01 AM

My late dear friend Peter Bellamy was politically rightward leaning -- tho always careful not to go to the extreme of his father Richard Reynhard Bellamy who was one of Sir Oswald Mosley's main deputies in the 1930s British Union of Fascists and was interned under Regulation 18b during WW2 -- he wrote a memoir called We Marched With Mosley later on; tho Pete was ambivalently proud of him, I recall.   

I sing folksongs [google - http://www.youtube.com/user/mgmyer - for my Youtube channel] & generally vote Conservative these days because I respect my local MP of longstanding who is a Tory, tho while his predecessor Clement Freud, whom I knew quite well, lived, I voted for him, a Lib Dem. But, in terms of the thread title, I guess you can include me in as MOR inclined more to right than left. Many a battle I have had on this forum with Jim Carroll et al as a consequence! It was not so in earlier days -- in the General Election of 1964 which brought in Wilson's government, our Cambridge home served as a Labour Party local committee room. Guess I moved rightish-wards in my 40s: a familiar route; as the old saying, variously attribd in various versions (google!) avers: "He who is not a socialist at 20 has no heart; he who remains so at 40 has no head".

Solidarnosc in Love·Of·Folk however!

≈M≈


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Howard Jones
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 04:58 AM

Most of the online surveys which purport to analyse one's political views place me as a socially liberal conservative.

Folk song has long been used to express political views, especially those on the left, and the folk music revival of the 50's and 60s was closely linked with left-wing politics and protest songs. Those with different views are perhaps less likely to turn to folk music as a vehicle to express them, and those who do may be greeted with hostility rather than debate. This arguably leads to a perception that because political songs and comments at folk events are most likely to be from a left-ish point of view it means that the whole of the audience is in sympathy.

I don't believe this is necessarily true. It assumes that music and politics are always interlinked, which for many people is not the case. It may be difficult for those whose interest in folk is inextricably tied up with their politics to understand that others may be interested in it for other reasons which do not involve politics. It is also possible to enjoy a performance, and to recognise the passion and songwriting skills used to put forward a point of view without necessarily agreeing with it. It is sometimes forgotten that in many cases both right and left recognise where there is social injustice but differ in the solutions they propose, so I may acknowledge the truth of the song whilst disagreeing what to do about it. And of course, many folk songs don't carry a political message at all.

It is probably true that a large proportion of a folk audience is more or less left-leaning politically, and certainly it appears that part of it feels more ready to express those views. In previous threads on this topic some have expressed surprise, even horror, that there might be folkies who aren't on the left. However most people go to folk events to enjoy the music, rather than get involved in political arguments, and simply ignore the politics. I suspect that there is a much broader range of political views than some believe, they are simply not expressed.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: PHJim
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 05:31 AM

Tom T Hall - Hello Vietnam
Barry Sadler - Ballad Of The Green Berets
Merle Haggard - Okie From Muskogee
Merle Haggard - The Fightin' Side Of Me
Dave Dudley - What We're Fighting For
Autry Inman - Ballad of Two Brothers
Victor Lundberg - An Open Letter To My Teenage Son
The Spokesmen - Dawn Of Correction
The Battle Hym Of Lt. Calley
Calley apologises


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Thompson
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 05:40 AM

How strange that the term 'lliberal' should have changed its usage, if not its meaning, after a couple of centuries of meaning gently open-minded.

From the Online Etymological Dictionary:

liberal (adj.) Look up liberal at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., "generous," also, late 14c., "selfless; noble, nobly born; abundant," and, early 15c., in a bad sense "extravagant, unrestrained," from Old French liberal "befitting free men, noble, generous, willing, zealous" (12c.), from Latin liberalis "noble, gracious, munificent, generous," literally "of freedom, pertaining to or befitting a free man," from liber "free, unrestricted, unimpeded; unbridled, unchecked, licentious," from PIE *leudh-ero-, probably originally "belonging to the people" (though the precise semantic development is obscure; compare frank (adj.)), and a suffixed form of the base *leudh- "people" (cognates: Old Church Slavonic ljudu, Lithuanian liaudis, Old English leod, German Leute "nation, people;" Old High German liut "person, people").

With the meaning "free from restraint in speech or action," liberal was used 16c.-17c. as a term of reproach. It revived in a positive sense in the Enlightenment, with a meaning "free from prejudice, tolerant," which emerged 1776-88.

In reference to education, explained by Fowler as "the education designed for a gentleman (Latin liber a free man) & ... opposed on the one hand to technical or professional or any special training, & on the other to education that stops short before manhood is reached" (see liberal arts). Purely in reference to political opinion, "tending in favor of freedom and democracy" it dates from c. 1801, from French libéral, originally applied in English by its opponents (often in French form and with suggestions of foreign lawlessness) to the party favorable to individual political freedoms. But also (especially in U.S. politics) tending to mean "favorable to government action to effect social change," which seems at times to draw more from the religious sense of "free from prejudice in favor of traditional opinions and established institutions" (and thus open to new ideas and plans of reform), which dates from 1823.
Conservative, n. A statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as distinguished from the Liberal, who wishes to replace them with others. [Ambrose Bierce, "Devil's Dictionary," 1911]
liberal (n.) Look up liberal at Dictionary.com
1820, "member of the Liberal party of Great Britain," from liberal (adj.). Used early 20c. of less dogmatic Christian churches; in reference to a political ideology not conservative or fascist but short of socialism, from c. 1920.
This is the attitude of mind which has come to be known as liberal. It implies vigorous convictions, tolerance for the opinions of others, and a persistent desire for sound progress. It is a method of approach which has played a notable and constructive part in our history, and which merits a thorough trial today in the attack on our absorbingly interesting American task. [Guy Emerson, "The New Frontier," 1920]


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Allan Conn
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 06:50 AM

I've asked this question before and I to find it interesting. Certainly here in Scotland the vast bulk of folk performers do seem to be left wing and also a substantial majority seem to be quite pro-independence too. Not sure if those type of leaning people are drawn to folk music or if people are swayed by their contempories once in the folk world. I know there are exceptions but from experience the bulk, whether Scots born or English incomers, are left leaning pro-independence supporters. Much more so than the regular audiences in local clubs who are much more mixed and seem to have a far higher percentage of unionists! No scientific stats behind that just experience as it has been openly discussed for several years now!


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Jim Knowledge
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 07:22 AM

That Rita was in my cab the other day. She `ad a clipboard or something like it and it looked like she`d been gathering info about singers and their political leanings.
I said, "Morning Reet`, you gonna put all this on that Mudcat then?"
She said, "That`s right Jim. I want to find out if there is some sort of link between folk musicians and politics. You and your lot `ave been doing all the clubs for years, do you find it predominantly leftish?"
I said, "Yeah, there`s always some bleeding heart, tree `ugger giving it large on political correctness, but not us, we steer clear of all that"
She said, "Why`s that then?"
I said, "If we got into mouthing off about `ard luck stories and `ow many immos ought to come over we`d never get the good reviews in "The Daily Telegraph" which has proved to be a nice little earner!!"

Whaddam I Like??


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Jack Campin
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 08:02 AM

Non-Americans may find the 1992 documentary "Bob Roberts" informative on the subject of Hollywood, conservative politics and folk music in particular.

It was a spoof, not a documentary. And a bloody good film.


A better example of course would be Martin Carthy playing "Siege of Delhi."

He learned it from Hamish Henderson, whose attitude to military pipe music seems to have been that it was to be celebrated as a creation of the Scottish working class, no matter that they were in uniform when they created it. Hardly anybody who plays it now cares in the least about the other military traditions it was once associated with.


Certainly here in Scotland the vast bulk of folk performers do seem to be left wing and also a substantial majority seem to be quite pro-independence too.

Just look at fiddle and guitar cases. They mostly have either a saltire or a YES sticker on them, and I don't think I have ever seen one with a Union Jack. (Or for that matter a Confederate flag, though I would find that easier to imagine if a bluegrasser was carrying it).


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Vic Smith
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 08:13 AM

Allan Conn -
"I've asked this question before and I to find it interesting. Certainly here in Scotland the vast bulk of folk performers do seem to be left wing and also a substantial majority seem to be quite pro-independence too."


I got to know Hamish Henderson and remember vividly my conversations with the person I consider a great man. At one moment he was preaching the Socialist International and a few minutes later he sounded like the leading advocate of Scottish Independence. He seemed to feel that there was no dichotomy in these views.

I was interested in the post by Mike Grosvenor Myer (who has been around even longer than I have!) explaining that he has drifted rightwards in his political thinking during his life. As a sixth-former and student, I was very left thinking in my views. As I grew older I became more of a centre-left thinker, mainly because I disliked the undemocratic way of the Militant Tendency. Things changed after the coming of Blair and I moved back towards the left again. At least, that may be what happened. I think that as what is regarded as the 'centre ground' in British politics moved rightwards, I remained where I was. I am one of those people who says, "I didn't leave the Labour Party, the Labour Party left me."
Currently, I am very excited about the breath of fresh air that Jeremy Corbyn has brought to British politics and think that he has the potential to be the best prime minister since Clement Attlee. He will need to develop a greater statesmanship that he has shown so far but if he develops the ability to unite the broad church that the Labour party always was then he could engage the support of SNP, Greens, Lib-Dems etc. to overturn the most atrocious right-wing government that has existed in my lifetime.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 09:13 AM

In this thread, as in others, you are entitled to post anonymously. Provide you accept that an anonymous mederator, can post an inane remark, under said post
Dear old Mudcat, same name, same clique.
Less members.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: voyager
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 09:48 AM

Burl Ives

voyager (anonymously)


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 10:55 AM

John MacKenzie, I too found the "moderators" remark a bit odd. But then I find Mudcat is sometimes inconsistent with regard to its own policy regarding anymous guests. Why the "moderator challenged my accidental guest posting in such a public way is a mystery. I was going to ask why, but was sure I would not have gotten an answer.
   As to the subject at hand. I find that very few people are totally left or right. Most seem to be somewhat in the middle.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: akenaton
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 11:40 AM

Yes Burl Ives got me into folk music, and Lonnie Donegan.

Then I got caught up in "political" folk, which really ruined the genre. I now concentrate on the tradition and the old singers, many of whom are socially conservative.

Real folk music transcends politics, its about melody and human emotions......and we all have them.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: akenaton
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 11:45 AM

I would just add that most "professional" folk singers that I have encountered have been grasping skinflints, even worse than the "popular" performers.

I could give you a huge list of "capitalist" folk singers :0), some would surprise you.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: akenaton
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 11:52 AM

Jim.....you're beginning to get a wee bit TOO cynical....even for me! :0)


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Ellen Vannin
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 01:29 PM

Do you actually know any professional folksingers, Ake?


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 01:30 PM

I got the impression Peter Bellamy was non political, although I do recall his wife Jenny writing that when they were together he was inclined towards the Green party.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Jack Campin
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 01:58 PM

And an unexpectedly socialist one:

Gene Autry: The Death of Mother Jones

https://talkinsocialism.wordpress.com/2015/05/18/episode-52-the-most-dangerous-woman-in-america/


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: beeliner
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 02:59 PM

Tom T Hall - Hello Vietnam, Barry Sadler - Ballad Of The Green Berets etc.

Excellent list, thank you.

There were more-or-less right-wing "answer" songs to Barry McGuire's "Eve of Destruction" ("Dawn of Correction") and Buffy St.Marie's "Universal Soldier" ("Universal Coward"), which, as I recall, was by Jan and/or Dean.

There are also lots and lots of really disgusting songs, racist and otherwise, by various far-right performers.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Vic Smith
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:07 PM

Dick Miles:-
"I got the impression Peter Bellamy was non political, although I do recall his wife Jenny writing that when they were together he was inclined towards the Green party."


I think that Dick is right in challenging the statement that Peter Bellamy was "politically rightward leaning". He stayed with us every time he was in Sussex, whether this was after a gig at ours or other clubs or whether he was visiting the Coppers or was in Sussex for other matters.
In my opinion, for what it is worth, I thought of him as a talented, highly intelligent, well informed, argumentative, bloody-minded, politically aware, unpredictable, stimulating, thought-provoking individual. To this day, I can't make up my mind whether I liked him or not. Certainly, every time he was here we argued late into the night on a wide range of subjects.
The strangest argument that we had was the first time that we met after The Transports had been released. One review comment had got to him; someone had called it a flawed work. I gave him my opinion that it was it was one of the most important works that had come out of the folk revival - head and shoulders above most songwriting in this genre - and I spent ages praising it whilst he was running it down always coming back with that phrase that had got under his skin.

I can remember once trying to pin him down on his attitude towards conversations when there was a group of people talking. I told him that I thought that he was 'oppositional'; that he was quiet for the first part of a conversation then whenever a consensus had been reached, his voice would be raised against it and then he would argue his assumed position against all comers.
He listened patiently to me saying all this and then smiled guiltily and said quietly, "You bastard, Smith."


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:14 PM

He doesn't know any folk singers, no. Someone famous once had a bad gig in Dunoon in the late '60s and he has formed his warped opinion on the basis of paying two and six to watch it.

He thought Rufus Wainwright was brilliant till he found out he was gay. Then he started saying how crap he was.

Ignore him. His whole wretched life seems to be everybody else's fault.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:25 PM

Michael Portillo was certainly Conservative.

He will be seen visiting the monthly shanty session at the Baltic Fleet, Liverpool, on his railway journey from St Helens to Knutsford.

To be broadcast on BBC Two at 18.30 on Thursday 7 January, 2016. You can hear a clip here;

Baltic Fleet


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Mark Clark
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:30 PM

I think performers who earn any kind of living from their music tend to choose or write material they feel will resonate with their audience. I personally know upper echelon bluegrass musicians who hold liberal political views. We may not hear it reflected in their music because like many people, they hold their views as personal. They aren't political crusaders, they are entertainers trying to produce an excellent product. I suspect many country performers are also in that category.

Merle Haggard was mentioned earlier. Merle is definitely a proud patriot but that may be different than being a political conservative. Consider his great hit, "If We Make It Through December." Definitely an underdog kind of song in a category with, say, Merle Travis' "Sixteen Tons." Many people know Merle's coal mining songs but don't realize he wrote those under pressure from his record company who insisted he do an album of "folk songs." Merle was a great commercial songwriter and musician who was just trying to please his audience and the music business honchos.

I would guess that people who primarily perform songs advocating political points of view are not making what we might call a living doing it. I would also guess that their audience is not large compared to quality acts who are in it for the music.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:43 PM

Michael Portillo as far as I am aware is not a Folk singer, he is a lot of things but not as far as Iam aware a FolkSinger he came from a Spanish back ground and some of his relatives had left wing views, any way well done Julia Batters.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 03:55 PM

Any singer, or musician, who jumps out and makes political identity, either on the 'right' or 'left' can count on losing half their audiences....and why do that, if that person really has something to say?? Sometimes the people who most need to hear a wider message, that their political bent may be, might not listen to someone as close, if they feel that they have been 'categorized' (read: 'profiled') as someone who is from 'the other side' ...which in reality is utter nonsense. We are actually all one....unless you suffer from a mental disorder called 'political delusions of grandeur'.
Music should strike a resonating node of unity. ...should a song of common sense engender hostile division...or awaken a common thread that unites through reaching that place of common sense????
Methinks that political hacks have co-opted and exploited perfectly sound commonality into 'your side' vs 'my side'...and this political group is hipper that the other one. Both have their strong points, and both have their nonsense....just ask. 'the other side'!!
For me, music has been a wonderful canvas to articulate the emotions of the angst within humans....where 'BOTH sides' (read: 'ANYONE') can 'get it'!!! A PERFECT example......and it applies to EVERYONE!!
....BUT, ...but instead, (politically speaking)....we're here!!


GfS


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Vic Smith
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 04:03 PM

I enjoyed the clip of the singing at the Baltic in Liverpool and I am certainly glad that it will be having a place on mainstream British TV. However, I do not think that anything political can be deduced from this. Michael Portillo is employed as the presenter (and a very good one too, in my opinion) of the TV series Great British Railway Journeys just as he was on the previous successful series on Continental Railway Journeys.
His input into the background research and script writing is not likely to have been significant.


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,mauvepink
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 06:38 PM

Johnny Cash and Kris Kristofferson were ardly right wing in many of their songs and Nanci Griffiths (Texan) along with Emmylou Harris could join them on the female side. Saying Country is right wing is, in my opinion, shown to be incorrect by all the country songs written that show extreme exception. Some singers, folk and country, will be right wing but to generalise country I think is so sad.

I sing and write folk and country songs. Most are not political but deal with affairs of the heart. Of the songs I have written to make a point I suppose many would say are left wing or liberal. One is about being a street girls, another about being a refugee. Being called liberal in such circumstance is a compliment, whoever it comes from or in what tone it is delivered


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: Jack Campin
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 06:57 PM

Yeah, but for every Emmylou Harris there are - how many? - right-wing tossers like this:

http://www.thepoliticalinsider.com/country-music-legend-just-threw-support-behind-trump/


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 07:44 PM

Everybody's morals do a flip-flop on some issue I don't care what they say.

Canadians are the most unfailingly polite pipples on the planet. They've even arraigned for one of Justin Beiber's hit songs to be titled "Sorry."

But Alberta hockey moms? Oh.My.Gawduh...


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Subject: RE: Folk Singers who are Politically Conservative
From: GUEST,DTM
Date: 04 Jan 16 - 08:12 PM

IMO, Kenny Rogers is a roaster of the first order irrespective of his predictable political views.


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