This list of songs is inspired by a list published by radio station, KEXP, from Seattle in 2010. For the most part, I will faithfully countdown from their list, from Song #500 to Song #1. So, when you see the song title listed as something like: “KEXP: Song #XXX”….it means that I am working off of the official KEXP list. If I post the song title as being: “KTOM: Song #xxx”….it means I have gone rogue and am inserting a song choice from my own personal list of tunes I really like. In either case, you are going to get to hear a great song and learn the story behind it. Finally, I am not a music critic nor a musician. I am a music fan and an armchair storyteller. Enough said! Let’s get on to today’s song.
KEXP: The Top 500 Songs in Modern Music History.
Song #427: “Who’ll Stop the Rain” by John Fogarty.
I don’t know about you but, there is something I find comforting about John Fogarty’s voice. It doesn’t seem to matter what song of his or of C.C.R.’s it is, when I hear his voice I feel the warmth of the summer sun, the camaraderie of friends at a bbq or picnic, the relaxed, peaceful state of being that comes from being with those you care about. I don’t know Mr. Fogarty but, he strikes me like the kind of guy who, if he worked at a factory, would be a Union organizer or a Little League coach. As cool as someone like Prince may have been, I can’t imagine pulling off his look of velvet and lacy frocks. But, I can imagine having beers with John Fogarty. He just seems like one of us.
“Who’ll Stop The Rain” was released in 1970; two years before the Watergate scandal changed the way politics were conducted in America. At the time, the heady days of “The Summer of Love” were giving way to the resignation of corruption in politics and selfishness and greed throughout the world. Many people view the lyrics to this song as being a repudiation to the existing politics of the day (Richard Nixon was President at the time) and a call for new leadership to step forward. “Who’ll Stop the Rain” coming to mean, “Who will step forward and affect change so it benefits us all”? There is, also, a less-political take on this song. A much simpler take. John Fogarty attended the inaugural Woodstock Music Festival in New York in 1969. He travelled from California and ended up in a rain-soaked farm, covered in mud, as he and his friends listened to the various bands playing that weekend. Fogarty has been quoted as stating that “Who’ll Stop the Rain” has its origin as a commentary on the weather that weekend at the Woodstock Music Festival.
Regardless of what this song means to you, John Fogarty as a solo artist and as a member of Credence Clearwater Revival produced many songs that touched on the American experience as it was at the time of their release. Songs such as, “Fortunate Son”, “Suzie Q”, “Bad Moon Rising”, “Down on the Corner”, “Run Through the Jungle” and “Who’ll Stop the Rain” form a formidable musical canon. Credence Clearwater Revival were inducted into The Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 1993. Without further delay, here is, “Who’ll Stop the Rain” by John Fogarty. Enjoy.
The link to the music video for Who’ll Stop the Rain by Credence Clearwater Revival can be found here.
John Fogarty has his own website that can be accessed by clicking on the link here.
KEXP deserves a pat on the old back for supporting good music over the years. A link to their website can be found here.