And, On Piano, Dick Nixon: Music and Anarchy

By: Sunday January 22, 2012 9:30 am

When then-President Richard Nixon sat down at the piano on the stage of the Grand Old Opry in 1974, he was reinforcing a conservative, polemical wall of sound to help contain several decades of transformational popular music, from blues and jazz to rock & roll. Music was the last thing on his mind.

As part of his notorious race-based “southern strategy,” Nixon led the efforts of conservative elites to co-opt American country-western music. He got the idea from George Wallace’s 1968 campaign, which Wallace had filled with country stars like Hank Snow and Hank Williams Jr.


Late Late Night FDL: Hackensack

By: Wednesday February 9, 2011 10:00 pm

John Coltrane and Stan GetzHackensack, backed by Oscar Peterson on piano, Paul Chambers on bass, and Jimmy Cobb on drums, recorded in Germany, 1960.

Late Night: Hank Williams and the Pulitzer

By: Tuesday April 13, 2010 8:00 pm

On Monday, the Pulitzer Prize Board awarded Hank Williams a Pulitzer Special Citation for his lifetime achievement as a songwriter, praising his craftsmanship as a songwriter who expressed universal feelings with poignant simplicity and played a pivotal role in transforming country music into a major musical and cultural force in American life.

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