Saturday, October 6, 2007

Musical Urban Legend

While listening to the radio the other night, "Fortunate Son" by Creedence Clearwater Revival came on:

Some folks are born made to wave the flag,
Ooh, they're red, white and blue.
And when the band plays hail to the chief,
Ooh, they point the cannon at you, lord,

It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no senators son, son.
It ain't me, it ain't me; I ain't no fortunate one, no,

Yeah!
Some folks are born silver spoon in hand,
Lord, don't they help themselves, oh.
But when the taxman comes to the door,
Lord, the house looks like a rummage sale, yes,

It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no millionaires son, no.
It ain't me, it ain't me; I ain't no fortunate one, no.

Some folks inherit star spangled eyes,
Ooh, they send you down to war, lord,
And when you ask them, how much should we give?
Ooh, they only answer more! more! more! yo,

It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no military son, son.
It aint me, it aint me; I aint no fortunate one, one.

It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, no no no,
It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate son, no no no,


As I listened to this familiar tune from the late 60s, which implies a young man who evaded service in Vietnam because of his father's influence, I was reminded of a persistent Urban Legend associated with this song. Since Al Gore's rise to national prominence, the rumor going around has been that Gore, a Senator's son at the time this song was written, was the inspiration for songwriter John Fogerty to write this song. I can't say for sure, but I'd guess that the rumor was started by Republicans.

Indeed, George W. Bush was also a Senator's son at the time this song was released and the words fit him just as well, if not better.

In reality, however, neither man inspired Fogerty to write the song. The true inspiration was David Eisenhower, a President's grandson who ended up marrying one of Richard Nixon's daughters and who served three years in the Navy during the Vietnam years, yet never saw any action.

2 comments:

Buck Pennington said...

A most interesting blog, Libertine. FWIW, we agree on some things and disagree on others. But Hey! That's what makes the world go 'round, nu?

Agree or disagree, I find "interesting" to be the prime driver in what I read. And you are that. As Ahnold sez: "I'll be baaack!"

Libertine said...

Thanks for your comments. I'm in the process of transferring old entries from another blog here, one by one, so more entries will be appearing in retrograde progression, in addition to new entries.