Radiohead never showed up, but Occupy Wall Street protestors in New York's Zuccotti Park have gotten to sing along with The Nightwatchman's Tom Morrello and Peter Yarrow, of Peter Paul and Mary.
The movement has spread from Zuccotti around the world, and as the New York occupation gains strength, more and more philosophers, artists, politicians and tourists have come to see what's been going on. What bands and musicians might be next to visit the demonstrators living in Zuccotti Park?
Bruce Springsteen: The populist has long been a supporter of the working class. At a 2008 rally for then-Senator Barack Obama in Ohio, the musician said truth, transparency and integrity in government, the right of every American to have a job, a living wage, to be educated in a decent school, and a life filled with the dignity of work, the promise and the sanctity of home. ... But today those freedoms have been damaged and curtailed by eight years of a thoughtless, reckless and morally adrift administration.
His sentiments are now being echoed by Occupy protestors around the country. But will Bruce, certainly part of the 1 percent, put his money where is mouth is and come support The (up)Rising in New York?
Rage Against the Machine: Sure, Rage guitar player Tom Morello has already stopped by, but there is no band from the past 15 years that has spoken out more against corporate greed and the plight of the disenfranchised than Rage Against the Machine.
Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (a.k.a. Odd Future, a.k.a. OFWGKTA): The L.A. rap collective has no political agenda whatsoever, but they do represent youth, originality and counter-culture. The group will be in New York next Thursday and it would come as no surprise if they stopped by Zuccotti park to see the scene. The young group doesn't have much face-recognition by this point, and Earl Sweaters will probably be able to watch the protest without much hassle.
Pete Seeger: Seeger also played for Obama, not coincidentally alongside Springsteen at the 2008 inauguration concert on The Mall in Washington D.C. The 92-year-old folk musician often plays his friend Woody Guthrie's This Land is Your Land, an optimistic protest song about American freedom. Tom Morello sang the song on Thursday.
NOFX: Creators of the Rock Against Bush festival in 2004, this political punk band has many politically charged songs; the 18-minute long The Decline touches on First Amendment Rights, gun control, the separation of church and state, and laissez faire economics.
Public Enemy: Flava Flav is a bit of a joke these days, but Chuck D is still a vocal and lyrical activist, who gives lectures and write books on politics, music and society. The 1989 song Fight the Power, immortalized in Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing, is still a poignant commentary on racism in America.
MC5: Believe it or not, MC5 is still playing. The Kick Out the Jams band has been revolutionary from their onset and is associated with radical movements such as the Black Panther Party and the Beats, and it was the house-band of The White Panthers. For Occupy, whose roots tickle the 1968 student protests in Berkeley, MC5 could provide a powerful cross-generational to Zuccotti park.
Blue Man Group: Because Occupy Wall Street loves to bang on drums.
Mos Def, Talib Kwali and Common: Occupy would a great place for a Blackstar reunion, and the three political rappers would find a receptive audience in downtown New York. Common is already on anti-Occupy critics' radars, thanks to an invitation to the White House this summer, and he could give more attention to the movement, as well as more fodder for pundits.
They Might Be Giants: It's important for protests to have a sense of humor, to not take themselves too seriously. Just ask Phil Ochs. TMBG's humorous but musically impressive songs would add an effective lightness to the tense mood at Zuccotti. Also, learning from recent experience, the best way to play Occupy is with an acoustic guitar or two. Anything else requires too much preparation. They Might Be Giants could do a great sing-along acoustic set.