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New social history derived from a rock band's songs

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Those interested in meaningful songs may also be interested in a new book just published which relates the social history of the second half of the twentieth century, and some aspects of the 21st, as seen through the songs of Barclay James Harvest. Songs by more than forty other artists – covering the whole musical spectrum from Black Sabbath to Donovan - are also cited.

BJH were a band whose main commercial peak in the UK lasted for about 10 years from the mid-Seventies, but their songwriters have written almost continuously since 1967. They were very popular in Europe too, once playing to about 250,000 people in Berlin. Many of their songs are already included on Songfacts, though the interpretations in the book reveal more information about them.

Amongst the sociological topics covered are the threat of a nuclear holocaust and other aspects of the Cold War; the Troubles in Northern Ireland; the Second Iraq War; the societal shift to treating the soldier as a victim; the protection of nature and the environment; the battle against depression and alcoholism; post-War spirituality and, of course, sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.

More details can be found at the book’s website: http://www.thefiftieschild.co.uk and on the book’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/thefiftieschild.

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