Throughout the winter protests against Governor Scott Walker's labor-bashing agenda, the halls of the Wisconsin Capitol were alive with the sounds of steel drums, cowbells, and daily sing-a-longs. Eventually, a muse would emerge to channel Madison's musical energy into a powerful new protest song.
With lyrics like, "When they put the governor on trial, I will be in the front row" and "...the kids locked in the capital are fighting till the end," Tom Morello's "Union Town" became the de facto anthem for the thousands of protesters fighting the Walker agenda, who heard it almost every morning on local radio stations. On September 5th, the Rage Against the Machine frontman and labor rights advocate, will return to Madison with Tim Mcilrath of Rise Against and Wayne Kramer of Detroit's MC5 as part of their recurring Justice Tour, with all profits from their show benefitting nonprofit media center The Nation Institute.
The concert, slated to take place at the Barrymore Theater, will feature pro-union songs from Morello's recently released EP Union Town, which he recorded under his activist alter-ego The Nightwatchman.
Any Wisconsinite involved in last winter's protest will remember Morello's last visit to Madison. Joined by Mcilrath, who has also lent his voice to songs promoting social activism, Morello delivered an inspiring performance to a crowd of thousands outside of the Capitol, on one of the more memorably frozen February days of the solidarity movement.
Morello later told Rolling Stone that his trip to Walkerville may have been "the most inspiring 24 hours" of his life as an activist.
So if you feel like getting down to the pro-union, pro-labor, pro-good times guitar licks of a Grammy winning guitarist, while simultaneously supporting a good cause (all proceeds will benefit The Nation Institute, which, according to a press release, was "established to extend the reach of progressive ideas and strengthen the independent press in the United States."), head over to the Barrymore on September 5th, and make sure to wear your favorite "Liberate FitzWalkerstan" gear.
Below, check out the schedule for The Justice Tour to see if its coming to a city near you:
The Justice Tour:
September 5th - Madison, WI The Barrymore Theatre (All Ages)
September 6th - Cleveland, OH Grog Shop (All Ages)
September 7th - Flint, MI The Machine Shop (18+)