Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Zager and Evans--In the Year 2525 (1969)

     In the almost 8 full months I've been writing this blog we have covered a lot of different songs and a lot of different types of music. Of course music, along with every art form is a very subjective thing. What is one person's favorite song, will be someone else's pile of poo. Which brings me to this song.

      The danger for any "message" song is that people will tire of the message before it has a chance to actually reach it's audience. Many folk singers have turned messages and/or protest into an art form. Sometimes when the message goes beyond the "now" and takes on a universal tone, it becomes a classic.  "In the Year 2525" is certainly a product of it's era more than a lot of songs, although it uses a sledge hammer to get it's point across rather than a scalpel, nonetheless the song endures to this day.  It came out during the time that Neil Armstrong was walking on the moon....it was also the summer of Woodstock. Both events had many of every generation wondering what was to become of us as a people.I think that had a lot to do with galvanizing of the song in the consciousnesses of that generation.  

      The interesting thing about the song was that it was written in 1964! Denny Zager and Rick Evans met at Nebraska Wesleyan University and formed a musical duo. It was originally released in 1968 on a local label and had received a lot of airplay on local stations in Omaha and Lincoln. It was picked up by RCA and given nationwide release in 1969, with it reaching #1 for six weeks that summer. Evans is still writing and performing, Zager makes custom guitars and although not performing together, are still good friends.


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