Three Cheers For The Red, White, And Blue
:: Everett Dirksen – Columbia The Gem Of The Ocean ::
To continue our tribute to the United States, I am going to exhume another patriotic old man’s vanity project. Now if your grandfather voted for Goldwater, he might not have been Everett McKinley Dirksen’s biggest fan. See, Senator Dirksen, of Illinois, was key in getting the Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed, a landmark piece of legislation to protect the rights of blacks and women, and something Goldwater voted against. Anyway, Mr. Dirksen was a pretty important politician, but still found time for a little sonorous oration over some true-blue anthems. “Everett Dirksen’s America” was not his first album, but it was most assuredly his last. He died shortly after it’s recording.
I can’t for the life of me imagine anyone sitting down and listening to an entire album of this man talking over this sappy music and actually enjoying it, but maybe some people love their country so much that they’ll do virtually anything. Taken out of the mind-numbing context of an entire album of this stuff, one track makes an interesting slice of cheesy patriotic pie. He’s kind of the square version of Ken Nordine. The singing is pure V-neck sweater brigade sweetness, and the arrangement wouldn’t seem out of place in a high school recital. The song itself is an old chest-sweller that was popular in the Lincoln era, and evidently also a blatant rip-off of a song called “Red White and Blue”, which was about another ship entirely, The Brittania. Please enjoy this allegiant number from a dude who looks like Rick Moranis' granddad. OK, OK, just listen to it.