“We Got the Power (Love Letter from America)” by Born Again Floozies
I love handclaps in songs. They make everything feel peppier. Even the most questionable children’s songs can be made less terrifying with fun handclaps. Back in 2008, when I first heard “We Got the Power,” I was impressed by the precision of the handclaps, the über festiveness of this sorry-about-what-America-is-doing-in-the-world-right-now anthem. It was a year or so later that I learned that those sounds weren’t handclaps at all, but two amazing performers tap dancing throughout the entire song (check them out here and here, where you can watch them perform other BAF songs). Tap dancing! Even better! As with the hybrid literature that Rose Metal Press publishes, I’m drawn to music and musicians who use creative combinations of instruments and genres. The tuba, trombone, and triangle in this song, the wild guitar-playing style, the use of dance as instrument.
I rediscovered this song recently and was again struck by the Born Again Floozie’s innovative blend of enthusiasm, irony, and apparatus, as well as by the unfortunate renewed timeliness of the concept of “manufacturing truth.”
Abigail Beckel is a poet and the publisher of Rose Metal Press, an independent, nonprofit publishing house for books in hybrid genres that she co-founded in 2006. Her poems have been featured recently in RHINO, Ecotone, Open Letters Monthly, and The Fourth River, among others publications. She lives in Takoma Park, Maryland.
Questions, compliments, (hopefully not) complaints?
Contact Jackie Clark: jackie [at] coldfrontmag [dot] com.
See all Songs of the Week here.
Follow Song of the Week on Twitter: @nohelpforthat