Songs of Resistance
“Every movement which has ever won anything has had songs,” says accomplished New York City guitarist, Marc Ribot. "The songs in this collection are what I wish I’d been able to hear or sing at the demostrations and benefits I’ve attended since Donald Trump’s election. Through them, I've tried to channel some of the deep rivers of song from movements past into something that may be useful now. A few tunes are arrangements of US Civil Rights (We Are Soldiers In The Army, We'll Never Turn Back) and WWII European resistance songs (Bella Ciao, Fischia Il Vento). One is a Mexican romantic pop ballad originally written as a political attack (Rata de dos Patas). Others are my own tunes based on or inspired by these."
A studio album released September 14, 2018 on ANTI- Records, Ribot set out to assemble a set of songs that spoke to this political moment with appropriate ambition, passion, and fury. The eleven songs on the record features a wide range of guest vocalists, including Tom Waits, Steve Earle, Meshell Ndegeocello, Justin Vivian Bond, Fay Victor, Sam Amidon, and Ohene Cornelius, Tift Merritt, Domenica Fossati, Syd Straw, with proceeds benefitting grassroots advocacy organization Indvisible Project.
"At a time of such overwhelming social turmoil, finding a focus for this kind of project is challenging. Nevertheless, Ribot’s purpose remained clear. “There’s a lot of contradiction in doing any kind of political music,” he says, “how to act against something without becoming it, without resembling what you detest. Sometimes it is hard to figure out what to do, and I imagine we’ll make mistakes, and hopefully, learn from them. But I knew this from the moment Donald Trump was elected: I’m not going to play downtown scene Furtwangler to any orange-comb-over dictator wannabe. No way.”
"Marc Ribot comes from many worlds, from no wave music to Latino music to the New York improv scene to the avant-garde. But his performance this year was a spirit of Americana that was singular at the festival. This version of 'Knock That Statue Down' is an homage to Charlottesville."
- Ann Powers, Best of AmericanaFest program for NPR's All Songs Considered
#3. Marc Ribot's midnight show at the High Watt. As my friend Devon Leger said in a late night note to me: "He did a cover of The Carter Family's 'When the World's On Fire' that brought the song into a place of simple quiet and quiet terror. You could hear a pin drop. I've never heard anything like it at AmericanaFest before. I was just there with some friends, not knowing what to expect, and it emptied my mind. Transported me entirely." With Ribot's emphasis on resistance music, another friend said it was an "AmericanaFest palate cleanser." It was THE showcase of the week.
-Amos Perrine, 6 Most Memorable Moments of AmericanaFest for No Depression
"Virtuoso guitarist, versatile multi-project artist and folk-punk activist Marc Ribot returns to us with Songs of Resistance. From partisan songs of World War II and US civl rights movement, to love songs to musical resistance from the peerless Albert Ayler and John Coltrane repertoire—and a few originals, of course—this extraordinarily unique artist delivers a concert true to his persona: free-spirited and committed."
- Montreal Jazz Festival 2018
'The Militant Ecologist' featuring Meshell Ndegeocello, directed by Jem Cohen
Songs of Resistance 1942-2018 (2018, ANTI- Records)
Live Performance Reviews
- NPR's All Songs Considered: Best of AmericanaFest Program
- No Depression: 6 Most Memorable Moments of AmericanaFest
- Variety: Kamasi Washington, Ry Cooder, Marc Ribot Bring the Heat to Montreal Jazz Festival
- The Daily Beast: Marc Ribot Leads a Musical Army Protesting Against Trump
- Rolling Stone: Song You Need to Know: Marc Ribot Feat Tom Waits, 'Bella Ciao'
- Pitchfork: Video Premiere-Tom Waits Frist New Song in 2 Years is a Marc Ribot Collaboration
- Rolling Stone: Marc Ribot, Steve Earle Protest Trump on New Song 'Srinivas'
- No Depression: Notable Roots Music Releases
Le Poisson Rouge - NYC
Songs of Resistance (Record Release!)
w/ guests Justin Vivian Bond, Ohene Cornelius, Domenica Fossati, Fay Victor
September 25th, 2018
Short salon set followed by discussion moderated by journalist Larry Blumenfeld
September 14th, 2018
Americana Music Festival - Nashville, TN
High Watt at 11:59pm: Songs of Resistance (Showcase & Record Release)
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