I hate it when I hear something on NPR, like spirituals or bluegrass or something, and I think it sounds cool, so I go buy a CD and “Ewwwwww! Why did I do that?”
But I was sitting in the bookstore yesterday, and was pulled away from my thoughts by something that sounds like “Old Dan Tucker.” And it was!
My feet were tapping, I was humming, and I was thinking “Why am I enjoying this so much?” Then, a banjo and a fiddle and something about “Fifteen miles on the Erie Canal,” and I’m still loving it! I was surprised over and over by folk songs that really rocked. I tried to get back to work, and next thing I know I’m humming “Keep Your Eyes on the Prize.” So I got up and asked what it was.
The album, We Shall Overcome, is Bruce Springsteen’s tribute to Pete Seeger, and it’s another 21st Century protest album. (See also Neil Young’s new album, Living With War.) Something tells me we haven’t seen the last of them.