How Music Affected the Anti-Vietnam Movement

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Humans throughout history have proven to be a very aggressive species. They disagree with one another, which might lead to conflict, and if the conflict is big enough, war. There have been many great battles and wars in the past, but one of the most controversial and protested war in human history was the Vietnam War. As World War II ended, the young males returned to their homes. They began families which brought a significant number of new children into the world. This dramatic increase in the number of births is called the Baby Boom. The Baby Boomers were new generation of people. As the world started to recover from the war, time passed, but as the saying goes “History will repeat itself” (George Santanaya, 1905). As time passed a…show more content…
The other obstacle the 98.5 percent of artists had to overcome was the distribution of their music. As the war started, the relationship between music, war, and patriotism suddenly changed and most believe this was due to the media. ‘Marshall McLuhan regarded the Vietnam Conflict the first true media war: a war covered almost in real time on television sets across the country everyday on the evening news’. Artists would generally write anti-war songs that were expressed as a desire for universal peace but with the escalation of the war and media involvement, anti-war music was not found with major record labels, stores, and had little or no radio airplay time. This did not stop artists because although ‘record sales and radio airplay time was the primary source of song exposure’ they began ‘preforming at political gatherings and popular music concerts’. As a result of this, the songs received exposure and ‘even music with a more limited audience changed as a result of the Vietnam conflict’.
As the war continued, so did the anti-Vietnam movement. The artists began writing their powerful and meaningful lyrics. As previously mentioned, popular song during that era included Pete Seeger’s 1961 composition “Where Have All the Flowers Gone”, Bob Dylan’s 1963 “Blowing in the Wind”, John Lennon 1971 “Imagine”, and 1969 “War” (What is it Good For?) by Edwin Starr and
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