"We Shall Overcome" has it roots in African American hymns from the early 20th century, and was first used as a protest song in 1945, when striking tobacco workers in Charleston, S.C., sang it on their picket line. By the 1950s, the song had been discovered by the young activists of the African American civil rights movement, and it quickly became the movement’s unofficial anthem. Its verses were sung on protest marches and in sit-ins, through clouds of tear gas and under rows of police batons, and it brought courage and comfort to bruised, frightened activists as they waited in jail cells, wondering if they would survive the night. When the long years of struggle ended and President Lyndon Johnson vowed to fight for voting rights for all Americans, he included a final promise: "We shall overcome."
In the decades since, the song has circled the globe and has been embraced by civil rights and pro-democracy movements in dozens of nations worldwide. From Northern Ireland to Eastern Europe, from Berlin to Beijing, and from South Africa to South America, its message of solidarity and hope has been sung in dozens of languages, in presidential palaces and in dark prisons, and it continues to lend its strength to all people struggling to be free.
As you listen to "We Shall Overcome," think about the reasons it has brought strength and support to so many people for so many years. And remember that someone, somewhere, is singing it right now. 2. (Street fighting) and The Rolling Stones featured on their 1968 album Beggars Banquet. Called the band's "most political song", Rolling Stone ranked the song #301 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
-This song deals with civil unrest in Europe and America in 1968. There were student riots in London and Paris, and Vietnam protests in America. It was the first Stones song to make a strong political statement. Mick Jagger got the idea for the song in March, 1968 when he went to an anti-war rally at the US embassy in London and saw mounted police wading into a crowd of 25,000.
3. The Temptations' version of "War", featuring Paul Williams and Dennis Edwards on lead vocals, was much less intense than the Edwin Starr version. Williams and Edwards deliver the song's anti-war, pro-peace message over a stripped-down instrumental track, with bass singer Melvin Franklin chanting a repeated recruit training-like "hup, two, three, four" in the background during the verses. nothin'!"), struck a chord with the American public and resonated with growing public opposition to the war in Vietnam. Fans from across the nation, many of them college students and other young people, sent letters to Motown requesting the release of "War" as a single.
"War" is a soul song written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong for the Motown label in 1969. Whitfield first produced the song – a blatant anti-Vietnam War protest – with The Temptations as the original vocalists. After Motown began receiving repeated requests to release "War" as a single, Whitfield re-recorded the song with Edwin Starr as the vocalist, deciding to withhold the Temptations' version so as not to alienate their more conservative fans. Starr's version of "War" was a number-one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1970, and is not only the most successful and well-known record of his career, but is also one of the most…