Rock and Pop songs inspired by Historical events.

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A slight deviation from my regular  history of sorts. This time I will leave the music do the talking.

Throughout the decades there have been many songs that took their inspiration from historical events, below is a list and clips of some of them.

Starting of with the one song that covers most of known history of mankind. The Rollings Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil”

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Next up the re-telling of Rasputin by Boney M. Although they took quite some poetic licenses it still broadly outlines the history of that infamous Russian.

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Martin Luther King was the inspiration for U2’s “Pride” one of U2’s best songs ever with a powerful message.

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On December 29, 1890, the massacre of Sioux warriors, women and children along Wounded Knee Creek in southwestern South Dakota marked the final chapter in the long war between the United States and the Native American tribes indigenous to the Great Plains.

It was to be known as the Wounded knee massacre.It inspired the Native American Rock band Redbone to record the protest song “We were all wounded at Wounded Knee”

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In 2010 the Chicago Metal band, Disturbed, released the song “Never Again” it was inspired by the Holocaust and served as an indictment that the one thing that history teaches us is that it keeps repeating itself.

Even our darkest era is denied, forgotten and slowly at risk of repeating itself again. But like Disturbed I also say “NEVER AGAIN”

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Although I am not a great fan of Bob Dylan as a performing artist, there is no denying he is one of the best songwriters ever.

I could have picked so many songs from his back catalogue but decided to go with “Hurricane”

Hurricane” is a protest song by Bob Dylan co-written with Jacques Levy, about the imprisonment of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter. It compiles alleged acts of racism and profiling against Carter,[1] which Dylan describes as leading to a false trial and conviction.

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Finishing up as I started with a song that encompasses several decades of history.”We Didn’t Start the Fire” is a song by Billy Joel. Its lyrics include brief, rapid-fire allusions to more than 100 headline events between 1949, the year of Joel’s birth, and 1989,the year the song was released.

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Pinkpop: the death of an institute.

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PinkPop is the oldest and longest running annual dedicated pop and rock music festival in the world.

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It started in 1970 in the former mining town of Geleen in the south east of the Netherlands. It stayed there until 1986. In 1987 it moved north a bit to Baarlo and since 1988 it has been held in the town of Landgraaf.

This year though it has decided to commit artistic and musical suicide by announcing that the 2017 headliner will be Justin Bieber.

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It is sad to see this legendary institution which originated in my home town taking its own life.

Let’s just have a look back at some of the legendary bands who performed there in the past.

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RIP Pinkpop, it was good while it lasted.

 

Famous bands that changed their names.

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Starting off with probably the best known band from the low countries”Golden Earring”. Their name change was very subtle, they were formed in 1961 as the “Golden Earrings” they dropped the S in 1969.

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The next name change is a bit less subtle but still subtle enough “the Cranberries” started off as “the Cranberry Saw Us” in 1989. When their male lead singer left and was later replaced with the one and only Dolores O’Riordon history was made as Limerick’s biggest ever Rock act. Sadly Dolores O’Riordan passed away earlier this year.

1957,Liverpool a group of teenagers called themselves “the Quarry men” after they had tried names like ‘The Blackjacks, Johnny and the Moondogs, Japage 3’ However this skiffle band eventually became known as “the Beatles”. You may have heard of them.

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Continuing on a Dutch theme with Van Halen. Eddie and Alex Van Halen formed their first band with three other boys, calling themselves The Broken Combs, performing at lunchtime at Hamilton Elementary School in Pasadena, whereEddie Van Halen was in the fourth grade. Eddie Van Halen would later say that this was when he first felt the desire to become a professional musician.In 1972, The Van Halens formed another band, originally called “Genesis.” The name was changed to “Mammoth” when they became aware of the English progressive rock band of the same name. Mammoth consisted of Eddie Van Halen on guitar and lead vocals, his brother Alex on drums and bass guitarist Mark Stone. Mammoth had no P.A. system of their own, so they rented one from David Lee Roth,a service for which he charged by the night. Eddie Van Halen became frustrated with singing lead vocals, and decided they could save money by adding Roth to the band.Michael Anthony later replaced Mark Stone on the bass guitar. The band opted to change its name because Roth suggested that the last name of the two brothers “sounded cool.”

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U2 Ireland’s biggest band. I can hear you say “What’s the Hype?” and you’d be correct. What is the Hype? That would be U2. The Hype started off as a 5 piece band. The Edge’s older brother,Dik Evans, used to be part of the band. After he left the band was renamed U2.

Even though they were called V2 on the posters for their first gig in the UK. About 6 people showed up.

This is the Dublin 4 in my hometown ‘Geleen’ in 1981.

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Led Zeppelin were not always called Led Zeppelin, in fact the had several incarnations.The first one being “the Yardbirds”. The band that included 3 of the world’s best guitarists ever. Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page and the man musicians refer to as “God” Eric Clapton. Jimmy Page was actually the bassist.

In 1968 the Yardbirds played their last gig and “the New Yardbirds” were born with Robert Plant on vocals.However the name ‘the New Yardbirds’ didn’t stick, it went down like a lead balloon or even a Led Zeppelin.

 

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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