Steve Earle. “Revolution Starts Now”

Steve Earle is a hugely talented song writer and musician. He’s hardcore left-wing, describes himself as communist, lives in the South, and plays country and bluegrass. Got that?

From his latest, the Grammy Award winning, "The Revolution Starts Now"

"F the CC" is a scorching attack on censorship. The music is as ferocious as the lyrics. Rebel music doesn’t get much better than this.

I used to listen to the radio
And I don’t guess they’re listenin’ to me no more
They talk too much but that’s okay
I don’t understand a single word they say
Piss and moan about the immigrants
But don’t say nothin’ about the president
A democracy don’t work that way
I can say anything I wanna say

So fuck the FCC
Fuck the FBI
Fuck the CIA
Livin’ in the motherfuckin’ USA

People tell me that I’m paranoid
And I admit I’m gettin’ pretty nervous, boy
It just gets tougher everyday
To sit around and watch it while it slips away
Been called a traitor and a patriot
Call me anything you want to but
Just don’t forget your history
Dirty Lenny died so we could all be free

Condi, Condi is a hoot, done to a deliberately dorky reggae beat too.
Oh she loves me oops she loves me not
People say you’re cold but I think you’re hot

Rich Man’s War

Rollin’ into Baghdad wonderin’ how he got this far
Just another poor boy off to fight a rich man’s war 

Tag: Steve Earle

  • Bob

    Odd that he hasn’t been Dixie-Chicked. But then, maybe he has, and I just didn’t know it because I don’t care for country music…

  • Chris

    Considering the shift of public opinion towards dubya, I would honestly be surprised to see ANY other artists/filmakers/musicians being blacklisted because of their negative view of the current administration…

  • Bob

    Earle was quoted saying he probably continues to live in Nashville just to piss them off.

    I’m sure he’s been slimed, but he’s quite capable of punching back. Which I think is one of the differences between radicals and liberals. Liberals get upset when attacked and try to explain. Radicals punch back and assume the attacks go with the territory.

  • Dave

    You know, being a native Tennesseean, I would have to say that most
    musicians in this genre are, in fact, NOT right-wing lunatics. Steve
    Earle is just one of its more vocal artists. In fact, if you would
    take the time to listen to the songs you would realize that almost
    every single bluegrass musician is a liberal, or at least a populist,
    who is not interested in war and who wants to do something about
    poverty and social injustice. One should not let a bonafide right-
    wing redneck dumb*** like Toby Keith, who would probably soil himself
    if he was actually in the war, be a representative of a genre for poor
    folk who don’t want to fight but have too. And before you say anything
    about whether or not I served my country: YES! USMC in Desert Storm and
    I was on the front lines of the invasion. It was awful.

  • Joe

    Commies aren’t cool.

    Steve Earle is a self described communist? And no one on the left has a problem with this?

    More people died un communism than Nazism.

    And you wonder why Bush won?


  • Brian

    Big fan, he’s been one of my favorites for the last 20 years. I wouldn’t call him a strictly country artist, he’s definetly crosses over into the rock/indy crowd. Pisses off Nashville to no end. His voice has deteriorated since his problems with the law (and drugs). But he’s distinctly unique as a song writer. Don’t worry about him getting Dixie Chicked, he’s more than capable of fighting back. Remember, this is the guy who performed “John Walker Blues” a few years back.

  • Dennis

    Earle describes himself as a borderline Marxist, not a communist

  • Judy

    Steve Earle is provocative, and I like that he says what is “unsayable” in country music. However, his profanity is distasteful to much of the country, “family” audiences, e.g., the Woody Guthrie Festival in Okehah, Oklahoma, myself included. I see no reason to have to say “motherfucker” as many times as he did, to an audience of little kids and grannies and grandpas. I’.m also sorry he probably will not be invited back there b/c of it. Too bad.

  • This is great, I hope more and more Southerners and those in the heartland wake up and smell the coffee… so evil no longer has anyone fooled in this country and evil dies. Burn Bush, burn….

  • Batman

    Well, I guess you pig fucking liberals can really be proud of one of your own. Steve Earl — ” Livin’ in the motherfuckin’ USA”. That’s real good.

  • Brent

    Nashville progressives and liberals are alive and well.

    Check out Music Row Democrats, a great lineup of artists who have stood up for their beliefs.

    Steve can be a bit abrasive, but he has the guts to stand up and say what he believes, and to help further progressive causes. Steve is this generation’s Woody Guthrie.

  • LJ

    Ooooh…when you use the “C” word it makes me so scared. There is only one humane option and that is the practice of the current economic administration. Everything else, by definition, must be evil. I mean, capitalism never hurt anybody, right?

    Yeah, if Steve’s a commie, he must eat babies and everything else about his life has no value.

    Grow the fuck up.

  • Ace Chaos

    Steve Earle is perhaps the most important musical artist in recent history. His music is covered by many other folks such as the amazing Emmy Lou Harris, who he frequently duets with. His music incorporates all styles of American music and cannot be classified as simply “Country Music.” Yes, his words can be abrasive at times, but that is nothing compared to the f**king Bush is giving the USA everyday. If you do not like country, I know that once you listen to Steve Earle, you will love it. He has actually been around for quite some time, now you know.

  • gene kelly

    Steve has moved to New York City recently and he is missed around here (I live in Nashville and saw his last show as a full-time resident at the “World Famous ExitIn”). He has been the man (he gave the receipts from the show to the Nashville Peace & Justice Center and to the Anti-Death Penalty group “Tennessee Coalition Against State Killing”-google them).

    He is a self-defined “Red Neck Leftist” (rednecks are just folks from no money, Dubya is not a redneck, he is “White Trash”). As a fellow “Red Neck Leftist” I thank Steve for being there and reminding me that we leftists can make a difference.

  • Stephen Kriz

    I have been a huge Steve Earle fan since the late 1980’s. Articulate, smart and he doesn’t take shit off anyone. His voice leaves a little to be desired (like Neil Young and Dylan), but he is an outstanding songwriter. Check out his CD, “Jerusalem”, especially the title cut, which may be the best rock song ever written about the Middle East!

  • Hopski

    Fools. The idea of Communism did NOT kill anyone – fucking biligerent, fascistic, overzealous, power-hungry, crazy dictators who twisted (and in the case of North Korea, still twist) the idea of communism as marching orders to justify their fascitic dictatorship are the killers. Stalin might have said he was a communist, but he was just a mudering dictator. Murderers are not communists, or capitalists, or anything but Murderers. Go to school and learn the difference between communism and Stalinism. Once you learn, you’ll find that, with his will and wish to control the labels people get, like “pro-terror” and “anti troops,” which is applied to American citizens and government officials who disagree with his BS, along with his administration’s use of a national network for propoganda, Bush is closer to Stalin than any President America ever had. Plus, with a total of 30-40,000 people dead because of his rediculous whim, he’s got a little bit of a start on competing with Stalin’s death record though admittedly he’s got a long way to go). So – it’s not communism that kills, it’s Assholes. Communism as an idea is peaceful – Naziiam is fundamentally wrong right off the bat, but not communism. Go back to your grave, McCarthy.

  • car

    This talk of “commies.” Your vocabulary is somewhat limited in your barbs, but this is usually no surprise to me from people who think this way. Seriously, Joe (Nixon), does anyone even USE that lame word anymore? Why not revive all of them… “pinko” is way more fun.

    I’m going to give you a new one. A term that both “sides” will like. Bush is “unsocialist.” Good for you, because you think socialism and communism are the same thing and some sort of societal ill, as you watch the brainwash box channel of your choice for your only source of real global education. Good for “us,” because it refers to his lack of concern for social issues, and kind of like a baby who was never properly socialized, he has turned into a selfish, amoral sociopath. Only in a suit.

  • James McMurtry is a good ol’ boy from Texas who has more that a few words for the Bush regime that’s destroying this country. You can download his fine song: “We Can’t Make It Here” at the following address for free.
    James McMurtry

    Bernie Sanders has his permission to use it for his campaign next year.

    His album, “Live in Aught-Three” is a delightful live take on his music, on which he gets to zing ‘W’ a couple times during his between song patter.

  • Ace Chaos

    Thanks for the introduction to James McMurtry’s music. “We Can’t Make It” provides a clear vision of the devestation the Repubicans have delived to our country. I hope Bernie Sanders plays it loud and often.

  • lemonleen

    “Well, I guess you pig fucking liberals can really be proud of one of your own.”

    Well, at least we know the intelligence of our opponents. Last I heard, though,
    the only person caught in a livestock-fucking scandal was conservative Neal Horsley.

  • Dear Steve,
    I have a couple of your CD’s and think your music is inspired.
    Copperhead Road and Telephone Road are two of my faves. Maybe it’s a road thing.
    We defeinitely don’t see eye to eye as far as politics goes. You’re an advocate for the far left and i’m an advocate for neither. I am tired of otherwise perfectly sane Americans hatin’ their neighbors over such divisive things as politics. Great songwriting bridges gaps
    between seemingly irrepairable chasms. Be a force for great songwriting. I’ll buy that.

    P. Shaw

  • cam

    communism is a broad term. most people think of china and soviet russion. but there is an alternative – libertarian communism or, anarchism. go look it up. and no, anarchism isn’t throwing bombs and being an asshole, it means ‘without rulers’.
    I see on the cover of steves new album there is a star with red and black stripes – those are the colours of the anarcho-syndicalists of the 1936 spanish revolution.

    broaden your minds.

  • Jon L

    Libertarian Communism is an oxymoron, I don’t care what some useless goecities website says. There ain’t no mixin’ of the two.

  • chris edwards

    Steve Earle is, and has always been, an amazing musician who plays REAL music for the people, for everybody and his sound isn’t beholden to just one genre, though most of what he does is primarily blue-collar country-rock, but bluegrass and punk also figure big into his sound. Funny thing is, “The Revolution Starts Now,” even though it is a really good album, is probably one of his weaker records, though it blows practically everything else on “country radio,” if you can call it that, out of the water at current. Can’t wait for his next record. Love him or hate him, Steve is definitely to be commended for his outspokenness as to his politics, however, wherever one stands politically shouldn’t hamper one from glossing over an artist of Steve’s caliber. I know of more far right wingers who listen to Rage Against the Machine than moderate-to-lefties I know, and that band is even more extreme and outspoken than Earle is. Steve Earle also really doesn’t do strictly political music; he has written some of the best songs in the past 20 or so years. Anyone interested in him should definitely check out “Guitar Town,” the masterful “Train a Comin'” or “Copperhead Road,” which features a great indictment of Emperor George I called “Snake Oil.”

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