July 4, 2014

It's kind of strange that Bruce Springsteen is the closest thing we have to a powerful political voice in American music these days, but damn it, I'll take it. In the activist tradition of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, Bruce just refuses to stop talking about the powerless -- and what America's supposed to be. Here he is at SXSW a few years ago:

After playing a few songs of their own, Bruce and the E Street Band were joined by scores of other musicians for what’s been described as a “face-melting” cover of Woody Guthrie’s ‘This Land Is Your Land.’So who was there? Members of Arcade Fire and the Low Anthem, Garland Jeffreys, Tom Morello from Rage Against the Machine, and Austin music legends Alejandro Escovedo and Joe Ely.The song pick wasn’t entirely a surprise — Springsteen is a long-time fan of Guthrie’s and even paid homage to the folk singer (who would’ve been 100 this year) in his keynote address, saying:

In Guthrie’s work, he found a way forward: ‘fatalism tempered by a practical idealism,’ and a conviction that ‘speaking truth to power wasn’t futile.’

What song still inspires you?

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