As Madison Rising proves, when it comes to performance, good attitude is everything

Madison RisingI’ve been a fan of Madison Rising, a patriotic rock band, for a long time.  I don’t necessarily like all their music, because they’re pretty heavy on classic rock guitar playing, but I really like their attitude.  The band takes its solid rock chops and applies it to patriotism.  Unlike most musical groups that pretty much reflexively “harsh on” American because it’s what all the cool kids are doing, this band uses its hard rock chops to celebrate America and her many virtues.

As it happens, I love Madison Rising’s rock guitar version of the Star Spangled Banner.  This is quite an admission for me, because I tend to like my songs performed straight, without howls and yowls.  If you were going to predict my musical tastes, you’d usually guess right if you said I would prefer Bing Crosby singing our anthem over some tortured rock band version.  Nevertheless, I’ll repeat:  I love the Madison Rising Star Spangled Banner.

If you’re wondering why I’ve step out of my musical comfort zone with this one, here’s the answer:  Madison Rising’s rendition is a fresh take on our nation’s anthem, performed with enormous energy, and a great deal of love.  This is not a robotic repeat of an old song:

When I listen to Madison Rising’s version of the Star Spangled Banner, I’m reminded of Runrig’s version of Loch Lomond, Scotland’s unofficial anthem. As does Madison Rising, Runrig rocks up a traditional song (indeed, one written around the same time as the Star Spangled Banner), but the group does it with love and passion. Scottish fans are enthusiastic about the group’s version:

My point about both of these groups is that their unorthodox renditions of old favorites are done with reverence and respect.  They are intended to build up, not to tear down.  Contrast that with Roseanne Barr’s justifiably infamous rendition of the Star Spangled Banner, which saw her adding crotch-clutching to melody-mangling.  Likewise, a lot of non-homophobic patriots took umbrage when Lady Gaga turned the Star Spangled Banner into a gay-themed anthem.  It was disrespectful, not because she brought her own spirit and style to the song, but because she was quite obviously denigrating the song and America as they currently exist.

I’m waffling on along these lines because at NASCAR’s opening this past weekend, both fans and racers disliked Madison Rising’s version of the Star Spangled Banner, considering its rock energy “disgraceful” and “disrespectful.” I wish I could reach out to the NASCAR crowd and let them know that there’s nothing insulting or disrespectful about Madison Rising. Whether or not you like their version, they sing it as respectful homage to a nation they love. If they can help resurrect some basic patriotism into disaffected young people who read Howard Zinn and like heavy metal and hard rock, more power to them.

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  • Ymarsakar

    Technically, the bombs bursting in air that came from the artillery example that inspired this song’s creation, has more of a drum basis to it than a singer’s voice on high notes. Just so you know.

  • Ymarsakar

    Those at Neo Neocon and here, are part of that rare 3%, in my view. That means the majority of Americans, including those patriotic ones at Nascar events, have no real clue what it is they are facing in the Left. They still think it’s politics, of a certain brand or kind.
    That is why they don’t see the Star Spangled Banner, they don’t feel it, as a war song. As a song to destroy the enemy, based upon defending one’s own position. They have no real idea, they are just getting along, to go along. They will obey the authority of the United States as it is constituted, but the authority that exists now is not constituted and they will have to make a choice. More of them, I think, will choose to fight than to Obey, but I doubt all of them will. Most of them would rather follow a leader and go along with the traditional ways. But the traditional ways was never designed to kill the Left.
    Rock music disrupts the mental and spiritual energies, aura. It summons up the fervor. Most people think the traditional Star Spangled Banner is a peaceful song, designed to calm people down and unite them in national pride. We’re not at peace, in case people hadn’t noticed. A domestic enemy has declared war on the US patriots, but most people go to the malls and think the hardest decision is picking between chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and coconut.
    Traditional American patriotism was never designed to fight the Left, only the British and monarchies and external empires. The Left, however, was created specifically to destroy American pride, patriotism, and prosperity. People have to change if they want to preserve their country. The traditions will have to change. There’s no way a people fighting an enemy, and winning, will stay the same.