This week the truecrimers looked at political corruption and crime. It’s a bit of a gray area sometimes, because things that are unethical aren’t always illegal. But as the saying goes, abuse of power comes as no surprise.
“Politician,” a song by Cream as performed by Gov’t Mule. It paints a picture of a man who stands for whatever will take him the furthest with the least friction, a man lusting for power and exercising his lusts in the back of his limo. Warren Harding knew something about that.
“Warren Harding,” by Al Stewart. Al Stewart was a Scottish folk singer-songwriter popular back in the 60s and 70s. Why he decided to sing about a disgraced American politician from the 20s, I don’t know, but it’s a happy hopeful song about a tragic affair. Harding presided over what was the biggest government scandal until Watergate.
Howlin’ Wolf, with “The Watergate Blues.” That song was recorded almost exactly one year before Nixon resigned, so Wolf didn’t even have the full story to work with. There were quite a few Watergate Blues, some from other blues singers like Bobo Jenkins and Big Joe Williams, there’s a jazz instrumental from Eddie Russ, and something from Tom T Hall that you can buy from Dr. Demento. And there’s this beatnik rap from Gil Scott Heron:
Gil Scott Heron and Brian Jackson, with the “H2O Gate Blues,” featuring a string of corrupt politicians from Richard Nixon to Richard Daley to Richard III. So I guess it never stops. Keep raking the muck and you’ll always find some crime. Until next time, Crime Time Radio.