March 9, 2007
"THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE AMPLIFIED" - TOM MORELLO
THE NIGHTWATCHMAN'S SONGS OF ACTIVIST SOLIDARITY
Among the stark songs on Tom Morello's debut album as the Nightwatchman are several written to express solidarity with other anti-oppression activists and instigate action. These appear on his debut album as the Nightwatchman, 'One Man Revolution,' due April 24.
Tom penned “Union Song” after performing at countless union rallies and marching on picket lines. He says, "I felt like I needed a fighting song, a freedom song, written specifically to energize grocery workers on the picket line, when it gets cold at night." He sings, "For our brothers and our sisters/ Up and down that picket line/ For the unnamed and unnumbered/ Who struggle brave and long/ For the union men and women/ Standing up and standing strong." The song also includes a Spanish couplet, acknowledging that freedom struggles transcend notions of race and nation.
The rousing "The Road I Must Travel" was one of the first Nightwatchman songs composed by Morello. He says, "It is definitely meant to be sung en masse, whether it's in the concert hall, the coffeehouse or the union hall." With echoes of the Pogues or The Clash, it's also the only song on the album with a full band, powerfully rendered to inspire conviction.
Morello has stood on the front lines during his fair share of protests. He performed and spoke at the Million Immigrant March in LA, was teargassed at the Miami protest against the Free Trade Area of the Americas, protested the demolition of South Central Farm in LA, was arrested in a civil disobedience action with Hotel Workers Rally in LA, and in 2006 Tom was awarded the Eleanor Roosevelt Civil Rights Award.
An eloquent coda to the album, "Until the End" is the Nightwatchman's statement of solidarity with other activists on the front lines. Morello says, "It's a song of commitment, most of all a commitment to one another -- to work and to fight for freedom, economic justice and human rights."