Music discussed in the Levan Center

Taylor Jensen, Editor-in-Chief

Taylor Jensen
Philosophy professor and Director of the Levan Center, Reggie Williams answers a crowd members’ question on the song chosen. Jazz Director Kris Tiner (middle) and Music professor Josh Ottum (right) listen to Williams’ explanation.

Deep Cuts and Conversation took place for the final time this semester in the Levan Center on May 30.

Philosophy Professor and Levan Center Director Reggie Williams, Jazz Ensemble Director Kris Tiner, and Commercial Music Professor Josh Ottum present songs of their choice that have an underlying meaning that match the theme of the event and then ask the audience for song requests.

Williams mentioned that there was no theme for the night’s event but after observing the messages of the songs chosen by Williams and Tiner, the topic they had in common were political issues.

Williams kicked off the night with a song by a political-heavy band named Rage Against the Machine. The song was called “No Shelter.”

The message behind the song was claimed to be that we as Americans are chained to the American dream.

“How freeing is it? The American dream is all about progress and being able to expand yourself and yet you’re chained to it,” Williams explained.

Fourth Reich culture, Americana / Chained to the dream they got ya searchin’ for / Tha thin line between entertainment and war….

These are the lyrics from the song itself hinting at the underlying message.

There was also a discussion on how political Rage Against the Machine is.

Tiner chose a song by Bill Withers called “I Can’t Write Left-handed.”

The following lyrics from Withers describes what soldiers had to go through during the Vietnam war.

Strange little man over here in Vietnam/ I ain’t, I ain’t never seen/ Bless his heart ain’t never done nothing to/ He done shot me in my shoulder….

It is an anti-war song about what soldiers went through in the Vietnam war. A soldier lost his right arm in battle and so he asks that somebody write letters to the people in his life because he can’t write left-handed.

“These events are always free and open to the public,” Williams said.

Williams encourages that people attend Deep Cuts and Conversation. Although this was the last installment for Spring 2019, there will be three more installments in Fall 2019.