Listeners to National Public Radio may have heard an item on the history of campaign songs during Weekend Edition Sunday (October 5, 2008). The Lilly Library is hosting a concert of campaign songs later this week, featuring songs of presidential winners and losers from Thomas Jefferson to Wendell Willkie to Richard Nixon. The songs all come from the sheet music collections at the Lilly Library. Other collections provided an array of campaign paraphernalia, currently on exhibition in the Lincoln Room. A staff favorite is a bumper sticker, reading: “Small Cars for Nixon – ‘He’s for the Little People.’”
The concert will take place on Thursday, October 9, from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. Christopher Goodbeer, Thea Smith, and Yonit Kosovske of the IU Jacobs School of Music will perform selections ranging from the upbeat to the obscure, including Happy Days are Here Again and Get Yourself a Nice Brown Derby (And Fall in Line for Al). A reception will follow the performance.
If you’d like to whet your appetite for Thursday’s performance, you can listen the NPR piece, “Songs Along the Campaign Trail” here: