Music has the ability to speak on numerous levels and it literally spoke through a bottle of scotch during a late-night visit from musician Greg Allman with Jimmy Carter. Carter might never have become the 39th President of the United States had it not been for that infamous night.
Directed by Mary Wharton, Jimmy Carter: Rock and Roll President charts how this Plains, Georgia native forged a bond with musicians Willie Nelson, the Allman Brothers, Bob Dylan and used music as a bridge in politics.
It was the support of these artists that gave Carter a crucial boost in the Democratic primaries. Kinda reminds you of how Bill Clinton playing the saxophone on The Arsenio Hall show got him elected or how Barack Obama using social media speaking directly to Americans worked for him.
Music is the voice of the heart and soul. Music brings the human race together in despair and during celebratory moments personally, professionally and as citizens of the United States of America.
My heart couldn’t help but become full watching the late Aretha Franklin sing “God Bless America” sans music and not be nostalgic for a kinder, simpler political arena that is now full of hatred, deceit and no regard for human race. The music doesn’t stop or start with the Queen of Soul, an all-star cast is assembled to shower accolades upon the former Commander-in-Chief including Trisha Yearwood, Garth Brooks, Nelson, Dylan and Bono.
The soundtrack is aptly filled with Southern rock, gospel, jazz, and classical.
It should be noted that in an election year, we see first hand just how crucial it is for a candidate to be embraced and supported by Black people and the church community. As neither one suffers fools gladly. Aside from the music, a trip down memory lane with a man who loves America, does whatever he can to preserve her beauty, dignity and integrity is alright with me. Jimmy Carter’s legacy will go down in the history books as someone who brokered and struggled for peace for himself, other countries and ours.
Thank you Mr. President. We Salute You…still.