Thursdays, 9:40–11:05, Apr. 26–May 17
Instructor: Jim Dunphy
The history of protests in the United States cannot be understood without the soundtrack to those protests. In this course, we will consider the interplay between protests and music. Starting with Billie Holliday and Woody Guthrie in the 1930s, through the music of the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960s and up to today, we will consider how music affected protest movements and vice versa. We will look at the backgrounds of the singers, view song clips, and then put the songs in historical perspective. Some of the artists we will consider are Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, James Brown, Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, John Lennon, and Bruce Springsteen. We will close the circle and end on a song by Graham Nash from the 1960s commenting on a contemporary issue. Note: the language in the songs is angry and at times profane, and the images disturbing, but they represent the true feelings of the artist in the moment, and what led to these feelings. This class is a repeat of the class presented at Tallwood in the spring 2017 term.
Jim Dunphy, an OLLI member, is a retired federal attorney and retired colonel in the US Army Reserve. When Jim was growing up in Brooklyn, his father put him to bed not with lullabies, but with songs by Pete Seeger, Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, and Jim Reeves—sparking an interest in folk music which continues to this day.