June 19th, 2019
Musicians and authors Mat Callahan and Yvonne Moore perform selections and stories from their most recent work Working-Class Heroes. The work emphasize the intersection between social activism and cultural production, and the use of music as a means to express social-political critique and organize people for action.
About Working-Class Heroes (CD)
Working-Class Heroes highlights the struggle and music of people who stood up and joined together to fight injustice and institutional oppression. The music is a collection of American working-class, pre–World War II folk songs revived by Mat Callahan and Yvonne Moore. The duo presents 20 songs written by both folk canon heavyweights and lesser-known but equally gifted songwriters, such as Sarah Ogan Gunning, Ralph Chaplin, Woody Guthrie, Ella May Wiggins, Joe Hill, Paul Robeson, and Aunt Molly Jackson. Most of the songs collected are from the early twentieth century, yet their striking relevance to current affairs invites us to explore the historical conditions that inspired their creation: deep, systemic crisis, advancing fascism, and the threat of world war.
About the Artists:
Mat Callahan is a musician and author originally from San Francisco. Recent projects include the republication of Songs of Freedom by Irish revolutionary James Connolly, the recording and publication of Working-Class Heroes, and the launch of the multimedia project Songs of Slavery and Emancipation. He is the author of five books including, in 2017, The Explosion of Deferred Dreams (PM Press). Callahan can be reached at www.matcallahan.com
Yvonne Moore is a singer and bandleader originally from Schaffhausen. In addition to recording numerous albums of her own music, Moore is cofounder and treasurer of the Art in History and Politics Association, whose purpose is to discover, publish, and popularize music, graphic art, and texts created by participants in conflicts such as the struggle to abolish slavery. Her exploration of the songs of Sarah Ogan Gunning led to the making of Working-Class Heroes. Moore can be reached at www.matandyvonne.com