This record is dedicated to the proposition that corporate funding of the American electoral system has polluted our democracy. Representative government is struggling against the pressure of campaign contributions that undermine the basic philosophy of our Constitution. The influence of oil money on politics has left our country unprepared for a financial and environmental collapse. That having been said, there is no substitute for a funky groove. When GWB was first appointed, Jon Hartmann could not bear to listen to the fake Texas accent and the pathetic misuse of the English language. The keyboardist went about his business, ignoring the gaffs and mistakes that his President committed. Years later, by an accident of nature, Hartmann heard the Great Decider utter the phrase “America’s addicted to oil”. He was doing experiments in sampling at the time, and the light bulb over his head went off. It was time. Using bits and pieces of audio snippets from speeches and news conferences, the words of our War President are spliced, diced, filtered, mashed and reversed until they begin to resemble the truth. The grooves that percolate beneath the Bush voice are potent and pack a punch. Although Hartmann has his roots in Jazz and Rock, his love of Reggae and Afro-Cuban is obvious in these songs. The message is clear: we are in the midst of a nightmare created by a fool and his hoodlum chums. The resources and life of this country are being drained so that oil companies can stall and not accept the inevitable. We knew that oil was dangerous in 1973, and we did nothing, worse than nothing, we bought even bigger cars with worse mileage. This record pays homage to the belief that having an oil man in the White House is not a bright idea.
Jon has worked with a wide variety of performers, including Ike & Tina Turner, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Morey Amsterdam, Jaye P. Morgan, the Staple Singers, Bobby Womack, Arthur Lyman, Brandon Fields, Steve Khan, Eartha Kitt, Oscar Brown Jr., Claire Hamill, Blondie Chaplin, Phil Chen, and Cathy Segal-Garcia.
The performers on the record are
Jon Hartmann, midi drums, keyboards; synth bass on 2,5,7,8,9,10,12,13 rhythm guitar on 3, 11, 12
George Sopuch, guitar on 6,7,8,9,11,14
Michael Rosen, guitar on 1,2,4,13; harmonica on 2
Lynn Woolever, bass on 1,3,4,6,11,14
Jack Lees, percussion on 1,2, 5, 10
Dave Price, sax on 1,3,10,13
Vlad Naslas, guitar on 5, 10
If it were but a Dream
Once upon a time, there was a country where people didn’t bother to vote. Half of the people who lived in the country had something better to do all day long, or didn’t remember to cast an early ballot. The ones who did vote and wanted to change things the way they liked them, decided to get money to buy ads on TV so they could make other people think like them. And then one day, a handsome rich man with very limited intelligence and morals got to be the President of the country. People were very happy, and the President didn’t act like he was a spoiled brat, he acted just like everybody else, real homey and comfortable around regular folks. He even learned to pretend he had a Texas accent.
The President loved to read, and one of his favorite books was “My Pet Goat”, which he kept reading for six minutes while planes were being flown into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. One day, after it was too late, the people of the country realized that they had sat idly by while a fool and his managers stole the country blind, and destroyed American goodwill around the world for decades. Moral to the story: If it’s dripping in oil, don’t appoint it to the White House.