tv History Bookshelf Tim Mc Graw Jon Meacham Songs of America CSPAN July 3, 2021 4:00pm-4:51pm EDT
hours, elizabeth verne and william kurtz of the university of virginia stories f african-american's from albemarle county who joined the union army to fight for emancipation. thank you. thank the old guy up here. so i have to have no. the so history as you all know is about words. that's why you're here. the stately rhythms of the declaration of independence the cadences of the constitution, but it's also about sounds it's about the muffled drum at lexington concord and the sound of the surf that omaha beach sound of a minister at the march on washington calling on us to live up to the full meaning of our creed.
and it's also about music. and music is one of the most universal expressions. you can listen to a song with which you might disagree more congenially and more profitably then you could ever listen to a speech about something with which you disagree. absolutely, i you know. assures the the patriots were were carrying their swords and their guns they were carrying their pins and they were carrying their pros and they were carrying their poetry alone with them to move this revolution forward and to our country forward. henry david thoreau once wrote when i hear music i fear no danger. i'm invulnerable. i see no foe and i'm related to the earliest times and to the latest. and that pretty much sums up. i think what we wanted to write about when we sat down down to write this book. yeah. throw yeah throw. until about thrice until about three weeks ago mcgraw thought thoreau was a running back for
lsu. so you are here at a inflection point. in the life. he's the reason we won the national championship. i was going to say well done. i rooted for clemson just to -- mcgraw off as it turns out. we are an unlikely duo. i'm very fit very well known for my good looks and singing voice. when we started to do this project, i was down in dallas and george w bush asked me said well what you're working on and i said, well, i'm doing this project with tim mcgraw and bushwin mcgraw. i like the wife. so i was misinformed. i thought this was a project with faith hill. and then his sorry ash shows up. so here we are this began where neighbors in nashville. tim asked me a really important
question and i had never thought about it. he asked given the periods of history i've written about had i ever considered the role music played in that history and i was embarrassed to say i hadn't and as david halberstam once observed a great nonfiction project is one that's a little bit like a liberal arts degree. you learned something about a world you or vaguely interested in but did not yet know and now as an artist you are at once of the culture, but you also don't want to be a partisan. no, i mean not look i think music. has a way like you said transcending through. party lines and transcending racial lines and transcending speech barriers everything. it just has a way of being a way to communicate that you can that. you can't communicate any other way with sometimes and i think it relates all the way back to
the beginning of the spoken word and then stories have been told throughout history through music originally around fires. i guess now in the beginning and you know for me, i want to be able to just move people by the stories that i tell and that's what i do with music is tell stories and and part of being involved with you and writing this book was to be able to tell the story of how music helped propel that story forward. so every era in american life the tensions of that era can be found in its music. it's actually so 1768. john dickinson wrote the liberty song, which was what seven years before eight years before the declaration of independence. we all know yankee doodle dandy the star-spangled banner, which was a broad nationalist him. the songs of the enslaved which are fundamentally religious
songs about deliverance and one of the things we had to deal with was how do we deal with the civil war what seward called the irrepressible conflict and tim grew up in louisiana when he came to tennessee, he was excited because we have electricity. i know you also this way it goes for the whole talk. i just entire time very it was very exciting. we had heard back books. he'd never seen that. big moment for him. hopefully, there's someone from louisiana here that are there any louisiana's way in the back. all right, that's close to the bar. okay. yeah well done. no problem there. my roommate in college was jack daniels, so i'm with you. so we had to deal with dixie and the south and if you think about the civil war you can understand
the tensions with dixie and the battle hymn of the republic right now your thoughts on dixie are pretty interesting. well, you know, i like john said i grew up in the south and in the deep south of louisiana and i grew up literally in the middle of cotton field tomorrow. my first memory is being in a house that used to be a heyborn that was in the middle of a cotton field i grew up driving cotton pickers and working in cotton fields and moving irrigation systems and cotton fields and from an early time. dixie was a part of our culture and a part of what i heard growing up and still to this day when i hear the song dixie is still stir something in my soul, even though in my head. i realized that it was a song that was written for a different purpose than what i believed it to be written for written for black. so again as we said last night, you don't have to push very hard to find irony in american life dixie was written for menstrual blackface performers in new york city to sing about how the
informally enslaved wished. they could be back in slavery. that's what the song was was written for and so one of the ways we had to find to deal with this was how do you tell the tensions of the story? absolutely and and when we were when we were doing our book tour, we had a performance that went along with it. and how do you people came to see me saying and work out, but we we had to go through the thought process of how do you seeing this song or delivered this song in a way. that that doesn't come across to anyone as being offensive and the way we decided to come up with that as a song called a trilogy. that was put together by mickey newbury and it combines dixie the battle hymn of the republic and it combines all my trials which is an old bohemian lullaby in the combination of those three songs are i think really sets the tone of what we were trying to say and shows the ark of those three songs together show the ark of what what it
really means. so here's somebody else who came from mississippi to tennessee and also found electricity. you may have heard of him. like the fighting soldiers breathrows die. that wrong song. that's the wrong song. that's why meacham shouldn't have this controller. i got the clicker. it's very exciting. he making handle a book, but he can't handle anything electronic. can you find can you find american trilogy for me? back there wave at me because i if i have to sing gonna throw me out. no, no. there's another story for that song. yeah, we'll get there. american trilogy will hum until then.
how the yeah, but grab the and break it out. but nope. nope. keep going. it's the first one. no, that's the last one. but i do know that song really well. thank god we'll get there. it's actually the second song on the list of the tape that you have i think. sorry guys. it's the only one we haven't tried so far for i will keep going. yeah, we've come to it. no, that's not it. not it either by 18 soul. that's not it. that's not it.
no, hope we live in hope. okay. so we'll get to that so that the american trilogy was really moving. and you all enjoyed it and it was one of the most moving things that we did when we did our when we did our it really was moving. yeah tour well and so one of the things that you find is when you're on the road with mcgraw is there are certain types of fans. mine are all slightly. well old. um with a lot of gin blossoms and horn rims he has a lot more diverse fan base than i do. so the the the if you push into on the tension front so dixie battle of the republic if you
look at the depression, you have brother. can you spare a dime which is a very dark song versus happy days are here again, which is kind of the fdr optimism. god bless america irving berlin woody guthrie explicitly wrote this land is your land as an answer? to god bless america. so this idea that we all may have noticed were somewhat divided politically in the life of the country, but we always have been it's a matter of degree more than kind. we've tended to think and then you you crash into the 60s. where really there's both the new music exploding and the cultural tensions of the world. we live in red versus blue becomes so real absolutely and we tend to think of the 60s when we talk about protest music or patriotic music and a lot of ways you tend to automatically
go to the 60s especially when it comes to protest music. some of the first music that i remember growing up i grew up, you know, i was born in 1967 and growing up in the early seventies and listening to your parents' music as you're riding around in the car the first songs that i remember are songs from that from that late 60s era that that my mom was listening to and it's the first time as an artist that it struck me that music. has more meaning than just something to enjoy that there's something more to music than that. it's the first time i remember sitting and listening and saying these guys really have something to say, they're not just playing a little cute little song for you and trying to entertain you. they're really trying to say something and that really connected with me and i think that's part of the reason that i became an artist is hearing those songs from the 60s, but also when we started this project it made me realize that you know the songs from the 60s are the fortunate son and protest songs like that. draw a direct line to me now all the way back to the liberty
song, which was written yeah by dickinson and 1768 or whenever it was and what he was trying to say. so it protest songs have been there all along. we just know more about it because of the 60, yeah and protest and patriotism when you think about it are two sides of the same coin. they're two wings of a bird to pick your metaphor. so in january 1966 ed sullivan comes on the air he had imagine. this is a great show. he had dinah shore. the four tops the frosty the snowman voice the comedian and a guy named barry sadler who was a green beret this song became the number one song in america in 1966 no, no, but wait is it but this is the trilogy the trilogy. all right, i think hit rewind. okay.
okay. okay. do they have green beret? right before this one's green beret. no. all right, green beret. but what was what was so incredible about the song? that you can speak to john as sergeant sadler standing there ramrod straight. oh, yeah performing this song about of green beret and fighting and coming on is so patriotic and so moving and everybody's sort of just gathered around. there's like it was it was a sort of a magnetic post for people of that era and remember to john wayne who made the green berets right? it was kind of a remember. that was a vietnam movie. that was really a world war ii movie. it was an attempt to sort of have that moral clarity about about the green berets. so and the tension with that of course is our friend.
merle haggard, yeah okie from muscogee and i i grew up love him merle haggard as well. i mean i again back to louisiana. yeah, my stepdad drove in 18 wheeler when i was a kid gosh, five and six years old. he drove in 18 wheeler and i spent a lot of time riding around in that 18-wheeler in the cabinet thing with an eight-track player listening to eight tracks of merle haggard and charlie pride and mel street and just all these great country singers george jones, and that was my education in country music. not only you come by all this i come by pretty honestly. yeah, and not only the riding in the truck in here in these songs, but but jukeboxes at truck stops it four in the morning in places like that. i grew up at that place part of my dna my first memory we're not my first memory. my mom tells me my first introduction to music. she worked at a bus stop cafeteria in rayville, louisiana before she met my stepdad when she was a young single mom and i
was in a playpen right by the jukebox. and i would sit in that playpen every day all day while she working. listen to the jukebox when when the faith actually wants to keep you in a playpen. as some kind of pen, i don't know. all right. let's see if we can do okie. okay. give me okie from muskogee. can you do it? raise, right? all right. that's good play that play that one. this is the berry sadler battle of the greenbacks ballard ed sullivan 19 fighting soldiers from the sky. fearless men who jump and die men, who mean just what they say. the brave men of the rainbow
rain. silver wings up on their chest these are men. america's best 100 men will test today but only three. when the green bay this is so interesting. so a number of you were singing along. fascinating and that song so 1966 number one song in america. by 1968 you couldn't have released that. right is that that's how quickly the war changed? for folks sentiment for the war for sure. yeah. so merle haggard was riding along on a bus one day.
i'm sure drinking protein shakes and healthy vaping sure there's a lot of hydration a lot of water and they passed a sign that road about muskogee, oklahoma. so, let's see if we can. now we're talking now we're talking. yeah. no. no. we don't take our trip stone lsd. we don't burn no trap cards down on main street. we like to live in right? been free and we don't make no
party. i love it. we like cold in. hand pitching woo my hair grow long shaggy like the hippies out. san francisco that should be it okay from muskogee. everybody knows that one. it's very squares can have a ball. oh, i look at we still glory down at the court house. and one still the biggest thrill. now that's my kind of music. yeah. okay, that's if i have to put a list together of what are of my favorite artists who would be at the top of that list of all time
as a country artists, it would be merle haggard because of the because of his story for one thing but his talent his writing ability and in the way he spoke to the common man and the way he performed songs. he just had one of the greatest voices. i think every country singer included myself are especially the lineage of country singers that in the style that i i seen i think can directly mark themselves. to merle haggard who goes all the way back to the breakman this thing in breakman. yeah. and merle went back and forth on whether that was a parody or whether it was a red state anthem and it depended on the protein shakes the what which one sold tickets at which time but but you know nixon. took advantage of this. in fact when there are the only two places richard nixon in march of 1974 could safely go one was the economic club of
chicago and the other was the grand ole opry in nashville, and he shows up and as you all may know nixon was terribly clumsy and easy to roy acuff used to do a thing with the yo-yo and that was a disaster brent's gocroft used to have to when he was working for nixon when nixon would put a metal on someone it was often remind them of combat because nixon would slice his hand open and blood and so the guys but they have a flashback so they finally had to just put scotch tape on the on the metal thing. so he shows up and the he's greeted by a song written just for that occasion to that theme because at that point everything's falling apart for him and he was going to the base and that was 40 years ago 45 years ago. so there was a very much a
concerted effort on the part at that point of the republican party in the same way. the democratic party was reaching out to the counterculture and when you look at the march on washington bob dylan was there peter paul and mary really remarkable you had it you had a you had an answer to this. so if you're despairing of where things are, this is a perennial story and then we crash into the 1980s with president reagan and the whole notion of mourning in america and two different songs that are really two sides of that coin. yeah. i mean you can you can listen to lee greenwood's god bless the usa and can really move you and you can listen to to bruce springsteen born in the usa and you can be a big fan of that and they both. have different meanings and they come from different places. in fact reagan wanted to adopt. yeah, the springsteen song and john bruce wouldn't have anything to do with it because i
think you they didn't quite understand or get what the song was saying from bruce's point of view now. you and springsteen i often think of in the same. i do too as a matter of fact. yeah, does anyone else i put myself in springfield? no, i you know when we were doing when we were putting this thing together, and we were actually playing songs. we did our two hour shows well. they ended up being two and a half hours sometimes with john talking about i was talking. but we were gonna do i was going to do born in the usa and then i told john he wanted me to do born in the usa. and and i told john this story and i told this story throughout the tour that we did. i promised myself that i would never do a bruce springsteen song ever because i tried it once and there's this thing called grammy cares, which is a concert. they do a couple of nights before the grammy's that always honors a big huge influence in music a big superstar and somebody that's been around for a long time and hasn't had a big impact.
on american music or music in general and one year they were doing springsteen in springsteen happens to be a friend of mine and he asked if faith and i would do tougher than the rest which is springsteen song that he did with his wife patty and we said sure would be glad to do tougher than the rest and we learned tougher than the rest and we show up and they're some of the biggest names in the music business that they're staying neil young john legend. the list goes on just the biggest names and we were proud to be a part of that group. so we sang tougher than arrest as nervous as we were and as hard as it is for me to try to match my wife's vocal because she's such a fantastic singer. we got through it into sounded really good and we get back to the table and bruce is congratulate mail how good it sounds and thank them thanking us for doing it. he says, you know, and by the way at the end of this show, i'm going to get up and sing. i forget the name of the song now. i'm give me a second anyway. glory days glory days, i'm gonna get them sing glory days and he said would you mind you can't find anywhere? yeah. he needs me can't you tell?
and he has faith and i said all the artists are going to get behind me. we're all gonna sing along to the course of glory days if you don't mind coming up and i'm like sure we'll come up and sing the course of glory days. that'll be fantastic being on stage with sting and bruce and neil young and all those guys. wow. i can't wait. so it understand i'm sitting right? what's up, bro? so then tonight he goes up and starts playing and then he starts doing glory days and he calls all the artists up. so we all go stand up then we're all standing behind bruce and of course i have my cowboy hat on and my wife's beside me the whole lines beside us and bruce is right there singing. he's starting to get to the second verse and he looks back at one of the artists. i'm not going to name the artist. he looks back at one of the artists and says hey you can do the second verse and he's like, no, i don't think i want to do that. it looks at another artist the second verse it's not i want to do that and at this time i'm starting to get into a little embarrassed for my friend that nobody wants to sing the song with him. he looks over at me and says, hey cowboy hat on the microphone come sing a song come sing the second verse. i didn't know the second verse. and i didn't want to be the
third person. to say no to bruce springsteen, so i thought how hard can it be? i know the song. everybody in the music industry is here. why don't i just step up there and act like i know what i'm doing. bad mistake i step up. i don't those songs are the lyrics are on the on the teleprompter, but i can't find the melody to save my life so i get two lines into it and i'm all over the place and messed up and bruce just pushes me all the way and starts singing the song. i turn beat red. i'm totally embarrassed. i know i've ruined my career and i go to step back in line beside my wife and my wife pulls one of these on me. literally moves away from me. well, i'm ready. so that's why i'll never ever do a springsteen song. that's right.
there you go. plus no one can do it as good as bruce anyways. no reason to try like a dog, that's when he too much to expand your life. just so it's easy to get caught up and that's such a great song and it's easy to get caught up and caught up in the anthemic notion of that chorus and sort of beat your chest to be very patriotic when you hear that, but when you listen to the verses you realize it's coming from a little bit different
point of view, right? so word reached president reagan in the fall of 84 that this song had come out and he said this was his favorite bruce springsteen song at which the white house press corps always respectful ask what his previous favorite bruce springsteen song again, it took three days the word came back. it was born to run and no one sure whether president reagan actually heard that but he was in a new jersey was a swing state and it was the core remember of what we now used to talk call reagan democrats. so the fact that a republican was carrying new jersey was a big deal bruce springsteen came straight out of that constituency. the president reagan was trying to affirm in 1984. so he gives a couple of speeches where he says, you know, new jersey's own bruce springsteen has made this patriotic song. well the patriotic song is about a guy getting killed at cassan and not being able to find a job.
and so there was big pushback, uh, george will had written a column. this is how this is how ronald reagan learned about bruce springsteen is through george. will that explains a lot about america and george is the only person present company included whoever wore a bow tie and a double-breasted blazer to a bruce springsteen concert. i don't think it's that striking apparently it is so there was another song that merv griffin had discovered lee greenwood had been a car dealer in vegas. into about 1982 83 i came to nashville made a name for himself with this song played it on merv show merv as you all know, very close to mrs. reagan sent a video cassette. we explained to your grandchildren later what those
are of greenwood singing this and it became the the reagan anthem and has an amazing power today. it's such a great song. our that song still strikes me every time that i hear it because i associate it with growing up and just being a country music fan in here in that song and feeling very patriotic and being very moving very stirring and certainly lee greenwoods one as a fantastic singer and writer. so even today when i hear the song it's still moves me, although sometimes when it's played bothers me. yeah, great song, right? you have tomorrow all the things were gone. i'd work for all my life. i had to start again. with just my children and my wife.
thank my lucky stars to be living here today because the flag still stands for freedom and they can't take that away. an american where at least i know i'm free and i won't forget the megave that right to me me and i gladly stand up. and her still today. because there ain't no doubt, i love this land. god bless the usa. yeah. the greenwood, i mean what? what an incredible song in that? to speak to a great country and patriot be such a great country
and do it in a pop popular way with a song like that was it was pretty incredible at its time and it's still incredible when you hear it. it's still such a great piece of music. it's inextricably linked i think both to the mid 80s and then to september 11th in many ways and and president reagan. i never met president reagan's with my great regrets, but i did get to know mrs. reagan a little bit and yeah. i don't need to tell anybody here about that. i have scars from barbara bush y'all have scars from nancy. but she but her power i mean president reagan's transformative power. so amazing those jimmy stewart once said if ronnie had married nancy the first time he would have won an academy award. i should probably true but reagan's visual imagination was
so important and so he as you know, his great phrase was a shining city on a hill, right? well, he's the only guy i know who can improve on jesus right because city on a hill is from the sermon on the mount in the new testament and but the addition of the word shining is so important in that that i actually not making this up. i have heard ministers from pulpits say as jesus said america shall be as a shining city upon a hill how that was rendered in the original aramaic. i don't know but but i got to him is dragging a little bit late in her life and we were at lunch one day and as you all know she always knew more gossip than you right and sometimes it was even accurate and so i was always embarrassed because she knew far more about what was going on in washington than i did. and so i had just heard a minister say this a couple of weeks before about jesus and shining city on a hill. so i was at lunch with her and you know, she'd ordered that third of the cobb salad at the
bel-air and not eating it and i said, you know, ma'am it's incredible president. reagan improved on jesus and she looked without blinking said oh, yes, that's the kind of thing ronnie did. may we all someday be loved as nancy davis loved ronald reagan, uh that turns out. but it was a what greenwood did was capture a moment where patriotism from the ballad of the green berets until about greenwood had fallen into kind of squaresville, right? that's what okie was about and it was really an affirmative cultural statement that patriotism could be popular again. and we can make that case as a speech you can make that case in a campaign, but we went around america and people when they when he's saying stand up lots
of people now stand up. and particularly military family. yes. absolutely. yeah, and it's and it's always a pleasure to seeing that song especially when john and i do are are things together. it's was a highlight of the evening to do that song and perform that song and see what it stands for and see what it means to be people and that's what music does and that's what music is always been a part of in my life. is it marks moments in your life and sometimes you'll hear a song and it puts you right back into a situation and it sometimes it can be just a mundane situation in every day situation. my i hear i'm not lisa by jesse colter and it puts me in seventh grade laying in a hammock with my half asleep with my math homework on my chest explains a lot about his accounting, but that's what music does but also when john and i were putting this put together we started talking about the idea it also music shows up and plays. big huge parts in pivotal moments in our country and in our lives in a lot of ways. you know the back to the second
world war. i mean he irving berlin wrote god bless america in the first world war. thought it was too sentimental so he put it in a drawer. pulls it out in 1940-41 and it becomes the the song it became. but do you all know the churchill story berlin very quickly. so asiah berlin remember the great philosopher british philosopher was an attache at the british embassy during the war in washington and he would write these marvelous reports about the american political situation back in the prime minister read them. and so he put out the word that when mr. berlin visits london, i want to see him. so mr. berlin comes to london, they set up lunch. it's just the prime minister and mr. berlin. they're discussing american politics. mr. berlin leaves one of churchill's assistant says to him how was lunch and churchill said all i know is he writes
much better about politics than he talks. it was irving berlin who had mistakenly come to lunch. so it's amazing. we all aren't speaking german. as it as it turns out the other great churchill story, which has no relevance whatever but you'll like his churchill was in the men's room of the house of commons one day standing at a long trough. doing what one does and clement atlee the socialist labor right prime minister comes in and churchill steps away. and that lee looks simon says. are you feeling standoffish today winston? and churchill said no. it's just that every time you see something big you want to nationalize it so. see usually very highbrow of and this is just i bring it out and it bring it bring it. so what? we are in a divided era of music
has represented illuminated tried to assuage our divisions in the past. what do you see the role in this era for your craft for my craft in this? you know, i think for me, you know, sometimes music is there just to make you feel good. and i think that right now we really need that and also think we need music to to build for people to be able to hear and get both sides no matter what side of the aisle you you fall on no matter what type of music that you like something that has a way to stir your soul and let you see some insight into another point of view music has a way of doing that and i think that that for me when those songs come along or when that inspiration comes along i try to do that and sometimes i just try to make a song and make you laugh or song and make you cry. yeah and one of the songs that really for me is one of those transcendiary, so it's transcendiary. that you just mix up incendiary and transcendent, but that's why i'm here.
he's teaching me vocabulary at the same time. that was one of the great, you know, writing a book with me jim. i got my very own history professor who know i am like a human wikipedia and about that accurate. you know the george that that was a very george w bush moment so he may be president next the other story about strategory, you know, okay, very quickly. i don't know if you actually do this so you have to be pretty confident in yourself in george w bush is to have a conference that your presidential library on comedy in the presidency, right? that's a pretty bold thing. so he invites will ferrell and lauren michaels to come down to the library in dallas and they're singing around backstage before they go on and bush says i made this pretty easy for you all. and they say what you mean. espresso i gave you strategory. and michaels and pharaoh look at
each other. they say should we tell him i said, i guess you know mr. president we made that up and bush was crushed because he thought he'd said it and then he so he but he fought back. he said yeah. well you didn't make up misunderestimated. so it's it's in cindy. what'd you say? well when i was what i was trying to say in my louisiana language, yeah native tongue exactly. are with a translucent simultaneous translation you has a way of crossing all boundaries and one of the songs that really i noticed when i sing that no matter what audience i'm seeing to is when i do a song live like you were dying. and that song really is one of those songs that i feel like that i'm very privileged and blessed. to be the vessel for that song. i don't feel like that. that's my song. i feel like that's a song that's meant for everyone and everybody finds a way to relate to that and that's what great music does and i'm i'm fortunate in my career. thank you. not unfortunately my career that i'm able to have songs like that.
it's part of my repertoire and as an artist. that's ultimately what you want to do is move people and bring people together in a way that they may not have been brought together without a song like that or without a message like that. so do you ever think about the difference between a political song and a cultural one i don't i you know, i don't think they have a good songs. there's i think just think about good songs and songs that really move you. i don't think i would necessarily do a song if it's just meant to be political. yeah. i think that i would do us on this meant to move you. yeah, and whether has a political angle to it maybe but if it's still a well-written song and song that that has an emotion that can connect not just one side of of a society but to all society and i think that's really important and i admire which would be more more cultural than political again. yeah and one of things remember we're we're the sum of our parts, right so our dispositions of heart and mind matter
enormously one of the uncomfortable realities of the current era is that politicians are far more often mirrors of who we are rather than molders if we really wanted something different. they would give us something different. that's the nature of of the of the enterprise and so if you can create art if you can create a climate in which maybe you spend a little more time listening to those better angels as opposed to the worst instincts. we can nudge things forward a little bit and that's about the best we can do, right? if you can get to 51% of the time doing the right thing, that's a heck of a good day. and i don't make it very often. particularly when i'm with mcgraw, that's why i keep hoping to faith is going to show up but she has it. yeah, so, let me take a quick a quick story. one of the last times i saw the senior president bush was in maine two summers three summers
ago and a buddy of mine in nashville had just released a song. uh, and i played it on my phone for president bush and he listened to it and at that point was very difficult for him to talk. you know, he had parkinson's but was very quiet about it. and so he was when he spoke he was you listened. and we played this and then he just said beautiful beautiful. so here's here's a that's about us. here you know, there's a lot that grows by the front door. don't forget the keys under the man without always stay home.
my friend tim mcgraw later. well, i could tell a quick story about that song lori mckenna. laurie i wish i could take credit for writing. so i'm lori mckenna wrote that song and she's a great songwriter and a great artist in her own right, but she said down to show you what how a great song comes about and you'd set it earlier. i think she sat down in her living room. she has five children her husband was a plumber and she sat down on her living room because some of her kids had moved away and she had two kids left at home, and she was wanting to write a message to her kids about how to treat people when they go out of the house when they leave home so she sat down and wrote this little note really for her children knowing she only had two left at home and she wanted to read it to him and they walked into the door and she sit down and wrote it in 30 minutes and that's it. that's the power of music. absolutely. thank you, sir. history bookshelf features the
country's best-known american history writers of the past decade talking about their books. you can watch our weekly series every saturday at 4pm eastern here on american history history tv on c-span 3 the us house voted this week 285 to 120 to remove confederate statues from the us capitol and to replace in the old supreme court chamber a bust of former chief justice roger tani with a bust of former justice thurgood marshall. are a few minutes of that debate from the house floor? i rise in support of this bill. it directs the joint committee on the library to replace the bust of chief justice roger tony and the old supreme court chamber with a bust of justice thurgood marshall. it also directs the removal of statues and busts of individuals who serve the confederacy in other white supremacists. the united states capital is
beacon of democracy freedom inequality visited by millions of people each year and before covid hit and soon. we hope to be visited by millions of people again, what and who we choose to honor in this building must represent our values? chief justice tani who in the dred scott decision declared that african-american's could never be citizens of the united states and had no constitutional rights does not meet this standard and neither do the white supremacist. in confederates, we continue to honor with statues today justice tani's decision continued and permitted the expansion of slavery those who founded served and fought for the confederacy were willing to spill american blood in defense of it. in his infamous cornerstone speech confederate vice president alexander. stephen said that slavery and white supremacy were the cornerstone of the confederacy.
there are no there are no shortage of figures like justice thurgood marshall the first african-american to serve on the supreme court more deserving of the honor of being a displayed in our capital. there are some who argue that this action is an attempt to erase and forget our history. nothing could be further from the truth. we must never forget our nation's same shameful periods of slavery segregation racism. this is instead about who we choose to honor who we choose to literally put on a pedestal and display as emblematic of our values. madam speaker republicans and democrats agree that racism in any shape or form is repugnant and must be denounced. i do intend to vote for this bill as i did last summer when congress considered a similar measure. it is interesting.
however that our colleagues across the aisle have only recently deemed the cause of removing statutes worthy of immediate action. when you look at the facts, it's even more puzzling. since 1870 statues have been present in the united states capital and democrats retained a majority in the house 40 times since then. they've had ample opportunities to remove these statues that members of their own party are responsible for placing in the capital in the first place, but have done nothing again. the timing here is rather peculiar. for more history in the news follow american history tv on social media here up next on
american history tv ben mutzler discusses his book the province of affliction illness and the making of early new england. his focus is on how families in various arms of the government adapted and responded in the face of illness and contagious diseases. he is a history professor at oregon state university's school of history philosophy and religion the american antiquarian society hosted this event and provided the video. ashley cataldo curator of manuscripts at aas now that you've had your introduction to aas and to zoom i am going