After all my griping and griping about the shows that never come to Indianapolis, the universe has thrown me a few bones to shut me up this summer: Billy Bragg and Devo.
While I will gush about Devo later, right now I am obsessing over Billy Bragg. The legendary, untouchable, influential, punk-as-fuck Billy Bragg is playing The Vogue nightclub in September. Yeah, I know that September is three months away, but we need to start getting pumped for Billy Bragg NOW!
- Billy Bragg: You tell'em, Billy!
Billy Bragg represents the sweet, thoughtful heart of the first wave of punk music. Sure, Elvis Costello had all the big radio hits, but Billy Bragg kept it real. Bragg always put his money where his mouth was with his politics. From the get-go, Bragg was an out-spoken opponent of racism, sexism, homophobia, and fascism.
Bragg was also a champion of leftist politics in England and around the world. He is famous for having sided with striking coal miners in the early 80’s. What better place for a protest song than on a picket line, right?
In college, the compilation of Bragg’s early EPs, Back To Basics, was one of the few albums that rarely left my CD player (along with Refused’s The Shape of Punk To Come and Against Me!’s As The Eternal Cowboy). Bragg’s provocative folk filled the void in my life left by my disinterest in Bob Dylan.
Bragg rarely plays outside of New York City or the mega-festival circuit, so for him to come to Indianapolis is a huge deal. I don’t know about you, but I think this is going to be the concert of the year.