We three Presidential songwriters, along with about 10 other musicians, played a gig a few weeks ago in Sacramento–a kind of local celebration of the release of Of Great and Mortal Men. I took some of the proceeds of that gig and joined the National Organization for Women (NOW if you dig acronyms).
There are numerous reasons to do this–it’s an important organization for forwarding the rights of over half of the people on this planet: geniuses, scientists, writers, mothers, poets, wives, doctors, etc. But more immediate for me is the knowledge that Jefferson, Matthew and I collected over 50 musicians together to put together Of Great and Mortal Men and I think there are only four women on the entire project. That seems embarrassing to me. (Not to mention that to my immediately knowledge there are no people of color whatsoever.) One could make the argument, I suppose, that we wrote a bunch of songs about white men and hence the “casting” makes sense, but I still don’t like it, and I’d guess my co-writers have similar feelings on the issue.
In any case, there’s much a man can to do help, and this is just one way. Apologies to women everywhere for our phallocentric representation of a phallocentric history.