This is the first guest post from my new writer Ryan who I am extremely excited to see getting into Broadway by finding out there are a ton of shows with Punk Music and things that he is into. That’s one of the things I love about shows and songs like “Populism” from “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson”. They aren’t your typical Broadway showtunes and if you have a friend that isn’t into typical Broadway music, you can easily get them to begin to like shows by showing them productions that have music similar to what they would normally listen too. Ryan found the song Populism from Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and instantly knew that he wanted to write about it here for his first post on broadway reviewed.
It may be strange for a thespian, a punk rocker and a history buff to all go to a Broadway show together and leave satisfied, but Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson the musical is a strange show. This rare mix of theater, 19th century politics and raucous rock music is an oddly appropriate way of honoring a President who is notorious for his reckless disregard towards authority and having shot another man to death in a dual.
While all the tunes in the show had the cast rocking and strutting, I found the opening song, “Populism, Yeah Yeah,” to truly capture the spirit of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson the musical. Populism, Yeah Yeah is a booming and raunchy show tune with a hard hitting hook and hilarious lyrics that lets the audience know the show doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Even the show’s most somber spectators will have a hard time keeping a straight face when they see a cast decked out in mid 19th century fashion belting out rock music. A favorite part of mine was the song’s pop-punk style bridge when they start singing about American expansionism, especially because they are clearly uncertain about what was going on politically, giving a wink and a nod to populisms’ weaknesses, even as they serenade the philosophy.
Cause it’s the early 19th century
We’ll take the land back from the Indians
We’ll take the land back from the French and Spanish
And other people in other European countries
And other countries too
And also other places
I’m pretty sure it’s our land anyway
Beyond being a fun, witty, and catchy song, Populism Yeah Yeah from Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson the Musical captures the spirit of the show as well as that of the man himself. The song is a great summary of Jackson’s political philosophy and does an excellent job of expressing how hell bent he was on taking down the establishment and the elite, expanding America’s territory, and giving the government back to the people of America (as long as they weren’t native Americans). In other words, Jackson was fighting the man.
With a playbill featuring a gun, and a torn up American flag over a pair of low slung jeans with the tagline “History just got all sexy pants” the Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson musical lets you know how raunchy it will get right off the bat. As soon as the curtains open, you will see just how true this is. Whether you are looking for a rocking musical, a 7th grade American history refresher or just a generally fun show, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson the musical will give you all three and leave a song or two stuck in your head for days.