Historical Musical Analysis of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Fortunate Son

First of all I do really like the idea of music being a historical artifact. There are plenty of songs that I can think of off the top of my head that portray a message about the time period they were released and could therefore be investigated as primary sources of that period.

Since we will be talking about this in class tonight and I have done the required paper for that I don’t want to repeat everything here as well – but I will give a breif summary of my analysis of Fortunate Son. This one is relatively easy to get the message about – though I’ve listened to it for years and never before really thought about or really listened to the lyrics. It’s catchy which is a bit dangerous to me because I could really sing along to almost any message if it has a catchy/repeating melody. The song is a protest to the Vietnam War drafting process – and claims that “fortunate son(s)” of wealthy and connected Americans were free from the responsibility of fighting in Vietnam. At the same time, blue-collar working class young men were drafted and forced to fight for a cause they may or may not have believed in. An important thing to recognize is that CCR does support the troops over in the war – they are protesting the politics of America, not its defenders themselves.

Overall, it’s very interesting and neat that I never really knew the details described in the song before this assignment. Here’s a link to a You Tube Video of Fortunate Son.

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