“Louder Than Words: Rock, Power and Politics”

Now Accepting Bookings

Tour Schedule

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum
Nov. 3, 2017 to Feb. 11, 2018

William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum
March 10, 2018 to Aug. 5, 2018

George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
March 2, 2020 to Jan. 4, 2021

From the moment rock and roll hit the airwaves, it has played a crucial role in politics and social movements around the world.

Now, two iconic museums, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, and the Newseum in Washington, D.C., are partnering on a one-of-a-kind exhibit, “Louder Than Words: Rock, Power & Politics,” to explore the power of rock to change attitudes about patriotism, peace, equality and freedom.

Using video, multimedia, photographs, periodicals and artifacts, “Louder Than Words” will showcase the intersection between rock and politics. It will explore how artists exercise their First Amendment freedoms to challenge assumptions, stimulate thought and effect change.

Beyond music’s influence on the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War and gender equality, the exhibit will also feature such significant moments and figures as Bob Dylan, who rallied people against social inequality in the 1960s; the hip-hop music of the ’80s that put a spotlight on police brutality in poor neighborhoods; and Pussy Riot, who made their music an outlet for social activism in Russia in the 21st century.

Inside the Exhibit

The exhibit includes exclusive video interviews with Bono, David Byrne, Dee Snider, Tom Morello, Lars Ulrich, Gloria Estefan, the late Gregg Allman, Jimmy Carter and others, and combines with them interactive experiences, photography and never-before-exhibited artifacts to examine how music has both shaped and reflected our cultural norms on eight topics: civil rights, LGBTQ issues, feminism, war and peace, censorship, political campaigns, social causes and international politics.

Artifacts in the exhibit include:

  • Joe Strummer’s Fender Telecaster
  • Correspondence between the FBI and Priority Records regarding N.W.A’s song “F*** the Police”
  • Original handwritten lyrics from Chuck Berry’s “School Days” and Neil Young’s “Ohio”
  • Original Village People stage costumes
  • Artifacts related to the Vietnam War, the May 4, 1970, shooting at Kent State, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the #BlackLivesMatter movement

Photo Gallery

For more information or to book Louder Than Words, contact:
travelingexhibits@rockhall.org or call 216/515-1209.

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