Thanks, Paul, for your thoughtful and engaging response.
I think the bizarre times we're living in call for some engagement with the real world, even on this board, especially as it may or can pertain to music. Again and again, it seems, we have to debate and litigate what we've already achieved because some fear a loss of their power in the future. Instead of America progressing steadily toward the goal of achieving our ideals, we're getting constantly hampered in our ability to do so via the mind-altering propaganda of outright lies, conspiracy theories, and the legislation spawned by all this noise.
I don't want to see America move toward an amalgam of what's presented in George Orwell's 1984
and Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale
. Five years ago, I would have laughed at myself for thinking such an outrageous thought! Now, given the events and behaviors of recent years, I can actually imagine it happening as we stand by and watch it do so.
Perhaps, for some board members, I may have breached my rule of "no personal political statements" on this board but I want to say that as long as we keep it general, related to music, and civil, I see no problem. This discussion board has become pretty much stagnant and needs some spark and purpose to make it interesting again. We sure can try, after all, to quote Harry Chapin in "Taxi":
There was not much more for us to talk about
Whatever we had once was gone
Are we just going to fade away? I hope not!
Ken, excellent and thought-provoking posts. I usually go to your board and Rick's board to get away from politics and other depressing subjects but at least a tangential mention of the political situation is needed to respond to your ideas. I am more pessimistic about the future now than I have ever been because we seem to have lost the ability to engage with people who have different political views and see them as people of good will with different thoughts/experiences. Instead, both sides seem to assume that those on the other side are evil/stupid. If there were some medium, whether it be acoustic folk music or otherwise, that could get people to think critically/outside the box, and engage respectfully, it would be a boon to this troubled age.
I think you touch on another important point when you mention both the fight against communism and the need for civil rights reforms as themes of the folk era. I guess until recently I though most Americans believed in the ideals of the Declaration of Independence with regard to freedom and equal rights, perhaps differing on what to emphasize, how to achieve the goals, whether to focus on spreading freedom/equality first abroad or at home, or how big the government should be, but both sides still loving the nation's ideals and agreeing at some fundamental level. I don't know if that is the case anymore. If someone could make a song like "Road to Freedom" for the present age,inviting us all to peacefully keep walking together on that road we walked long before ...
Folk on, hope and pray for the best!
My thought on my original comment is that the events of the past that led to the spawning of the "Folk Era" of circa 1958 to 1964 have nothing on what's happening in America and the world today. Although we can't bring the as was "acoustic folk-music" format of the past forward to today, if we could, I feel it could well reflect today's concerns. Does anyone have any thoughts on this ... anyone?
Just speculation on my part but just think of how ripe the present time is if the "Folk Era" of old could somehow happen now! The old themes of the "Folk Era" such as Civil Rights, Equality, and fighting Communism, are now being recycled in real-time except now instead of fighting Communism to save our freedoms, Americans are fighting each other, politically and physically, to establish what each side thinks America should be. Your thoughts are welcomed!