Civil Rights

632 Words3 Pages
Great African American musicians of the40’s, 50’s, especially 60’s and 70’s, like Jimi Hendrix for example, where not have always been in the headlines for the right reasons. They, Hendrix especially, were not always forefront leaders in movement like the Civil Rights era like Malcolm X or Martin Luther where.. That may be true, but by simply being a successful African American musician in times like these would speak volume, and have profound influence. Jimi Hendrix explained it bests, when he summed up the power behind, not just his music, but all music, when he told us...
“Music doesn't lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music.”
Nowhere and at no time was statement ever truer than at the peak of the Civil Rights Movement. Music preserved the history of the movement, was movement biggest advocate, largest supporter, and greatest leader. Music embodied the movement likewise to how Martin Luther King did. But of the countless protest and songs, some did this especially well. Songs like “We Shall Overcome”, “We shall not be moved”, and “Go, tell it on the Mountain”.
But By the far the most common and powerful song of the era was Pete Seeger’s adaption of the old folk song “We Shall Overcome” (LOC) The first refrain of which reads
“We shall overcome; we shall overcome someday, Oh deep in my heart I do believe we will overcome.”(LOC)
This was the anthem for the movement. It was sung in Church, school, in the streets, on the protest. It was the motto that summed the entire movement up into three simple words., that really empowered African-American. The song itself has traveled and evolved along with the Blacks as they ventered from slaves to fully equal citizens.
It was original...

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...the entire nation.
The song still remains today. Often regarded as one of the most motivating and inspiring works of that era in history, as well as the decades before Civil Rights. This is an one few examples of the power behind music to embody ideals, immortalize the beliefs and struggles.

Works Cited

http://www.loc.gov/teachers/lyrical/songs/overcome.html http://www.sharefaith.com/guide/Christian-Music/hymns-the-songs-and-the-stories/go-tell-it-on-the-mountain,-the-song-and-the-story.html http://www.sharefaith.com/guide/Christian-Music/hymns-the-songs-and-the-stories/go-tell-it-on-the-mountain,-the-song-and-the-story.html http://www.huffingtonpost.com/peter-dreier/we-shall-overcome_b_3835195.html http://www.gilderlehrman.org/sites/default/files/swf/jukebox/jukebox6.php
http://www.opengovernmentrecords.net/drupal/node/65
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