It’s the first day of the hurricane season. It may be an active one, which is particularly fraught during the pandemic. But neither the pandemic nor hurricane season is the subject of this edition of Songs For The Pandemic.
I think you know what I have in mind: the ongoing protests that were inspired by the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis but have taken on a life of their own.
Frank Zappa wrote the original Trouble Every Day in 1966 after the Watts riots. It was the centerpiece of the aptly named Freak Out album, but I prefer the live More Trouble Every Day featuring the soulful vocals of George Duke and Napoleon Murphy Brock:
Bob Marley wrote Burnin’ and Lootin’ for The Wailers’ 1973 album, Burnin’. It was inspired by the same sort of rage and frustration that we’re seeing on our streets 47 years later. I don’t believe in second sight, but if I did, I’d think that Bob Marley had it.
Next up are two tunes inspired by the 1967 Detroit riots. First, Canadian folkie Gordon Lightfoot was so perturbed by these events that he wrote this song:
The last word goes to John Lee Hooker. The great bluesman lived in Detroit during the 1940’s so he always felt a special attachment to the Motor City: