Right-Wing Folk

When the folk music revival hit postwar America, its preeminent
performers either kept mum about their politics or tilted strongly
to the left. But not every folk fan followed their lead. Bill
Geerhart—the man behind CONELRAD, an invaluable website devoted to
the cultural history of the Cold War—has compiled
Freedom Is a Hammer, a fascinating album in which
lesser-known musicians of the 1960s sing songs about Communist
conspirators, liberal media bias, and other themes of the
Some of the tracks are clever. Others demonstrate that liberal
songwriters don’t have a monopoly on heavy-handed harangues. Most
follow the genre’s formulas to a T. Listeners who don’t happen to
know where Budapest is located might mistake “Remember Bloody
Budapest,” a song by future Reagan speechwriter Tony Dolan, for
another lefty protest number. At least until the lines, “Where were
your songs of righteousness/When Kennedy was killed by a Marxist?”
—Jesse Walker


Right-Wing Folk

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