John Crever shares an election year song, to sing with students.
“Music and songs in particular, have been part of our voting culture since the start of the nation, and for as long as politics have been recounted. Music was always a part of the process. Whether it be an upbeat wind band march to call potential voter’s attention to a city-center tree stump for a candidate to explain his position, to the political satire of Mark Russel and his piano, cutting like a knife through the murky rhetoric of blustery candidates to the concert performances by renowned divas and rock stars at the inaugural celebrations. Music grabs people’s attention, gives us something artful we can all agree on while setting the tone for the event.
Just weeks away from one of the most contentious presidential elections in US history, while still in the midst of a once in a century global pandemic, threatening global economic recession, I wonder what students think about the state of the world that adults have created for them today? I first heard the song “Vote for Me” on the Amidon’s Album, “A Song in My Heart” (1) and every autumn, as we approach election day in November, this song rises inside me as a “must do” age-appropriate-tune, that speaks to what our vote as citizens is all about. Often I think of my individual vote as my personal voice in the governing of the country I live in. It’s my one chance to give actionable feedback to the executive leadership of our nation. The song “Vote for Me” widened my eyes about the power of my vote as a parent, educator and leader. Written from the perspective of a child, the lyrics ask adults to vote with the long-term vision of our nation’s children in mind, similar to John Feierabend’s 30-year plan to grow musically rich adults who are tuneful, beatful and artful. I’m excited to be using this song this election season, with at home online learning! 😉
I wrote Peter Amidon, asking for permission to reference his family’s recording of the song. Peter writes:
““Vote For Me” is written by Faya Rose Touré* (also known as Faya Rose Sanders), an American civil rights activist, educator, lawyer, and songwriter who lives in Selma, Alabama. She was born and raised in North Carolina, and in 1969 she went to the Harvard Law School. Faya Rose Touré worked on a number of high profile civil rights cases during her law career, including the case of Pigford v. Veneman, the largest civil rights case in history. She founded the National Voting Rights Museum; the Ancient Africa, Slavery and Civil War Museum; and the 21st Century Youth Leadership Movement. Faya Rose Touré was Alabama’s first African-American female judge.”“
John Crever is a FAME teacher trainer, musician, educator and parent based in Portland, Oregon where he plots his Tuneful, Beautiful, Artful takeover of the western states.