Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Pearl Jam "Baracks Around The Clock" By Re-Writing An Old Classic



Download: Pearl Jam - "Rock Around Barack" (via the Ten Club)

From their slow metamorphosis from platinum-selling, reluctant mega-stars to the Grateful Dead for the Gen-X set, Pearl Jam have been one of the most consistently politically progressive groups in existence, from Ed Ved scrawling "Pro-Choice" on his arm while playing MTV Unplugged back in 1992, to the band's protest of the second Iraq war at a time when few acts were voicing such an opinion (turns out putting a boot up your ass isn't the American way after all). So it should be no surprise, then, that the band has endorsed Barack Obama for President. What's truly surprising is that the band has recorded a tribute to him by re-writing an old rock n' roll standby. That's right: "Rock Around The Clock" has become "Barack Around The Clock".

Pearl Jam's Stone Gossard, who sings on the track, elaborates:

("Rock Around The Clock") is a track I've been thinking about for a while. "Rock Around The Clock" was the first mainstream rock and roll hit in 1955 and it had a transforming effect on American music. At that time, rock and rhythm and blues music was traditionally only played on black radio. I am, by no means, an expert on the history of rock & roll, but this was a big deal. The rhythm of rock music and its energy were so overwhelming that traditional barriers of race and culture broke down with an enormous crash. So here's to new energy, rock and the breaking down of cultural barriers: "Barack Around The Clock!"


Well said. And there you have it. Roll your eyes, if you must. At the very least, Pearl Jam appear to be having fun on the song and have their hearts in the right place. One can't ask for much more. Listen to "Barack Around The Clock" at the top of the post.

Pearl Jam MySpace Page

PS - Not too late to vote in the primary! Polls close at 7 p.m. You still have two more hours!

(Jonathan Graef)

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