Music played an important cultural role during the Vietnam War, representing the rebellious views of a young generation and the traditional values of an older, so-called “silent majority.” The Newseum selected 40 songs released between 1963 and 1973 that typified the music of the Vietnam era. The songs captured the emotions of people for and against the war and reflected the mood of an increasingly diverse country amid dramatic social and political change.
The 40 songs, part of the Newseum’s “Reporting Vietnam” exhibit, are a fraction of the hundreds of recordings that dealt with the war and civil disobedience. Each week, one song from the playlist will be featured. We encourage you to add your favorite songs of the era to the comment section!
Joan Baez was the quintessential folk singer of the 1960s. Her plaintive voice and powerful songs made her popular in the anti-war movement. She teamed up with Bob Dylan in New York’s Greenwich Village and soon started performing at protest marches and demonstrations across the country. “Saigon Bride” told the story of a soldier leaving his bride behind as he goes to war.
Farewell my wistful Saigon bride
I’m going out to stem the tide
A tide which never saw the seas
It flows through jungles, ’round the trees
Some say it’s yellow, some say red
It will not matter when we’re dead
|Listen to our “Reporting Vietnam” Playlist on Spotify|
“Reporting Vietnam,” a new exhibit that marks the 50th anniversary of the start of America’s first televised war, explores the dramatic stories of how journalists brought news about the war to a divided nation.
|“Reporting Vietnam” Now Open|
Contributing support for the “Reporting Vietnam” exhibit is provided by CBS Corporation, in memory of CBS News correspondent Bob Simon.