This Election Day, voters will choose sides on a fundamental issue: Will America become a better place for poor people or rich people? Truly, we are living in the heyday of representative democracy.
Now, we already know the presidential candidates’ positions. But where do musicians stand? What’s their plan?
This is no trivial question. Musicians are some of our country’s most dedicated public servants, turning their lives outward in order to voice our unspoken wants, desires, and histories.
Fortunately, we needn’t wonder in vain. There is a long tradition of musicians outlining their visions for the world. Rarely are they realistic. I suppose that’s the point.
Platform: King Kurtis would “make peace in every culture, buy the homeless a home.”
Key initiatives: He’d throw a “super dinner party.” He would not stop signing papers, even when his fingers started to hurt.
Who’s in?: “All the girls.” Kurtis would “love ‘em, love ‘em, baby.”
Who’s out?: “Sucker mission politicians bustin’ out Z’s”
Platform: Happiness and freedom. Every man would be “free as a bird” and “sing of the joy every morning would bring.”
Key initiatives: The world would “wear a smile on its face” like “the man in the moon.”
Who’s in?: Everybody. “Every man would say the world was his friend.”
Who’s out?: The seasons. “Every day would be the first day of Spring.”
Platform: A plan so vague it rivals Romney’s in opacity: “I would give it, give it all to you.”
Key initiatives: “Every house got a DJ and a backyard party.”
Who’s in?: “Geeks, freaks, and wannabes.”
Who’s out?: People that like good music? Musically, this is the only song on the list that presents a vision potentially worse than our present world.
Platform: Legalization of marijuana (“Imagine smoking weed in the streets without cops harassing”) and family values (“More conscious of the way we raise our daughters”).
Key initiatives: Emptying the prisons. “I’d free all my sons.”
Who’s in?: “Black, Latino, Anglo Saxons”
Who’s out?: Asians?
Platform: James sings the same lyrics (penned by Leslie Bricusse) as Tony Bennett. Just one key difference: he’s James Brown.
Key initiatives: Soul power.
Who’s in?: It’s a man’s world.
Who’s out?: Old bags.