Maybe "Just Singing A Song Won't Change The World", But It's a Good Start
Le Théâtre de Plein Air, Colmar, France Aug 15, 2008
"Just Singing A Song Won't Change The World" is Neil Young's response to a question that was raised at a press conference in 2008: "Can music still change the world"?
The huge worldwide reaction to Neil's response to the question prompted him to issue a highly unusual clarification about what he really meant about what it will take to change the world.
That said, as we've noted recently with freedom breaking out around the world, folks have again been playing Neil Young's song "Rockin' in the Free World" as a soundtrack for revolution from Egypt to Wisconsin.
But -- of course -- not all are pleased with these developments as we've seen from some of our comments. Some even go so far as to call what we're pointing out here on TW about the music and the people in the streets as "incredibly moronic". And that's some of the milder reaction.
Now why are folks getting so darn upset about "Rockin' in the Free World"?
Even the bogus Tea Baggin', union bustin', astroturfin' elite counter-protesters have co-opted "Rockin' in the Free World" for their purposes in one of the odder paradoxical musical-political juxtapositions we've seen in a long time.
Which brings us to this comment on "Rockin' In The Free World":
"My opinion on the idiots who love to listen to, 'Rockin' In The Free World by Neil Young' and point;
I remember when the growth of the 'Iron Curtain,' was the murderous and terrible thing that our government in the U. S. A. and other governments around the world were ignoring.
I also know that anyone who thinks that you can solve a problem, or motivate the world to solve a problem, especially an everlasting problem like world hunger, drug addictions, wars and violent aggressions with a slogan, song, poem, prayer or sermon are nuts and are out of touch with reality.
To take Neil's song for an excuse to point at anyone, person, party, social class, or government and say shame on you for not fixing, anything, is doing just the very thing that has helped to perpetuate such problems.
How many of the finger pointers in this great cloud of witnesses have ever taken it upon themselves to simply walk up to that raggedly dressed young man or young woman who is obviously having trouble deciding whether to purchase clothing detergent or milk and said, 'Here let me help you with that, and while discretely pressing a few dollars into their hand say, 'I just feel that maybe you could use a helping hand.'
And then turn and walk away without waiting to hear a reply.
If you don't, haven't or never do this, you are missing the real meaning of any slogan, song, poem, prayer or sermon and are nuts and out of touch with reality.
We can blame everything on dead presidents, dictators and politicians in general, puff up our chests and march in the streets and then try to convince ourselves and our neighbors that we really got those bad old public officials told off about that issue.
I would love to hear what Neil would have to say about all of the finger pointers.
One thing is for-sure though, the world is full of inspectors pointing out the faults of others, problem is that we are running out money to pay the inspectors to just sit around and gripe about people like Ronald Reagan, Michael More, Bill Gates or anyone else that happens to be out there being made into a target for what is being sung about at any given time.
The answer is, after we have heard the slogan, song, poem, prayer or sermon and are motivated into an emotion, into touch with reality, we need to get up and do something beside moan at others.
For those who claim that they gave to their church, club, cone-headed, quirky quirky quickie fix idealogical social crutch there is a few words for the slothful that is best described by the very book that some hate, some hate to read it... all, some claim it but never read it and some claim it and read it wrong. It happens everyday, One that I like and that comes from the bible itself is this from the Book of James the first chapter; James' 1:22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
1:23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
1:24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
1:25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
1:26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain.
1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
Another words, see a need, go after it, don't wait until you feel guilty for not doing something.
Doing anything that you really believe that is bad for you? STOP and find something more creative and helpful to yourself, your family and your neighbors and do it with all your might.
We're not really sure where to begin in responding to some of these types of comments and are somewhat leery of even attempting.
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But in the past when world events have flared up and some wish to lash out at Neil Young's music as cause and/or solution, we'll just reference back to Neil Young's "Be the Change Cycle" of albums for an explanation.
Photo From Egypt: "Egypt Supports Wisconsin Workers." on Twitpic
So in the meantime, be the rain, be the change, be the wheat, be the rumblin'...
ps - Free concert tomorrow in Madison, Wisconsin. See you there?!