jump to navigation

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to songs about… Protests and protesting November 22, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....

Fleetwood Mac? Slowdive, Zep, Temples, perhaps some late period IDM, or how about some neo-EBM (that’s a B there, not a D). Nah, can’t be pushed this weekend. They’ll have to wait. We’re living in interesting times and taking a leaf out of IEL’s book in recent weeks let’s go thematic – protest songs and songs about protesting. Actually, I’m a bit amazed this hasn’t been done before.

I’ve only put up a few, please feel free to add your picks, and also as obscure or well known as you like. I’d love to compile a compilation from these… handy, I suspect, in coming weeks and months… 🙂

For What it’s Worth – Buffalo Springfield

First up hat tip to CL who put this in comments a few weeks back about water protests and has had me humming along to it ever since. It wasn’t actually written as an anti-war song, but most definitely written as a protest song.

What’s Going on – Marvin Gaye

Had to do it. Still great…

Patti Smith – People Have the Power

Didn’t Springsteen write this? No he didn’t, it was Patti Smith and Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith and a more uplifting protest song is hard to think about. Sure, it’s almost commercial, but that gives it its power.

Moving Hearts – Open Those Gates

A slower track, but one I’ve loved for years, written about the H-Blocks, and taken from the second incarnation of Moving Hearts.

Discharge – Protest and Survive

Loud, angry, abrasive and as neat an encapsulation of opposition to nuclear war as you can find.

Stiff Little Fingers – Alternative Ulster

I count this as a protest song, and one that holds out hope for the future…

…as does this…

The Three Johns… Torches of Liberty (from their album the World By Storm)

The Three Johns, famously left anarchists, and this song which sums it all up for me.


1. dmfod - November 22, 2014

Maybe our movement hasn’t yet matured enough to produce the classic protest songs of old 😉 but there’s a few funny water charges ones doing the rounds on Rabble:

Coonan, ISIS: Respect the Chair:

and the rather un-PC ‘Enda Kenny Is a parasite and a piece of shite’:


WorldbyStorm - November 22, 2014

Ah, excellent. They’ll be timeless classics too… 🙂


2. Mick - November 22, 2014


3. Joe Mooney - November 22, 2014

So many great ones to choose from this guy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gv1KEF8Uw2k


4. Joe Mooney - November 22, 2014

Not really a ‘protest’ song , but definitely a call to action !


5. Joe Mooney - November 22, 2014

A powerful punky version of Union classic –


6. Joe Mooney - November 22, 2014

And my final offering of the day as I’m off to Wexford to see Larry Kirwan playing this evening – Another classic from the U.S anti war protest era


7. Mick - November 22, 2014

Oh, and

and a timely sarky paen for ‘recovery’:

Finally, Bobby Conn, protest singer par excellence:


8. LeftAtTheCross - November 22, 2014

The original and still the best:

Also this:

And finally this:


9. CL - November 22, 2014


Mick - November 22, 2014

Ah! The recent pearl-clutching over the protests had me listening to this earlier this week: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvC4xq32AX8


10. CL - November 22, 2014


11. CL - November 22, 2014


12. AonRud - November 22, 2014

Jinx Lennon’s Big Protest Day

Sounds a bit clearer on an album than through a megaphone, but probably more appropriate this way 😉


13. Starkadder - November 22, 2014

Thatcher vs. The Declaration of Independence:


14. Liberius - November 22, 2014

Taking this in an unusual direction, here is ‘La Crise’ by French band l’homme parle; I’ve been lead to believe that it gets played at CGT marches.


15. CL - November 22, 2014

This song was written by Abel Meeropol, a Bronx schoolteacher and communist. He adopted the Rosenberg children after their parents were executed. Billie Holiday made the song her own.


16. CL - November 22, 2014

Oops. This might work.


17. WorldbyStorm - November 22, 2014

Wow! It’s going to be a massive compilation… 🙂


ar scáth a chéile - November 22, 2014

Not a song but a symphony, and, to the ears of many, including mine, an anti Stalin protest disguised as a “Soviet Artist’s response to just criticism”:

And it can be heard live in the NCH Friday week.


WorldbyStorm - November 23, 2014



18. Colm B - November 22, 2014

If you’ll indulge my preference for unplifting anthems, there’s lots of versions of the Italian partisan song “Bella Ciao” but heres my favourite from the Modena City Ramblers:

And, since Im still on a high from today’s huge, inspiring, Radical Indepedence Conference in Glasgow, here’s the great Scot’s protest song, written by Hamish Henderson, “Freedom come all ye”, sung by Luke Kelly:

And, on a smoother key, an old favourite, “Radio Africa” from Latin Quarter:


WorldbyStorm - November 23, 2014

Latin Quarter remain peerless.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: