The Bands That Told Me To Vote (And Why Their Message Isn’t Bipartisan)

Well, apparently, there’s some sort of election going on today.  Who knew.  Outside of India, you can’t really get a majority of the population really pumped for any election unless it involves you texting to the number “Idol 004” (David Archuleta was robbed!)

Obama!?  Is that you!?

Now, as I’m sure we all know, the music industry (outside of… the terrifying south) is pretty much backing Obama strongly, and vocally.  But, as we’ve learned from certain celebrities, obnoxious celebrity endorsements are usually met with, at best, annoyance, and at worse, a disdain for the celebrity’s preferred candidate.

Like, okay, lets pretend you are a half-kenyan Liberal senator from Illinois.  Your middle name is the same as the last name of a recently executed dictator of the Iraq.  You are leading the polls, and have successfully taken apart the Bush administration, and are running under the slogan of change.  Now, pretend your name is, say, Obama, and tell me you’d want to vote for yourself after seeing this god-awful youtube video

Now, unlike TI$A, a lot of Indie bands, when sending out their messages, try to play it down the middle.  “Vote,” they say, “No matter who you vote for, VOTE!”

But, just like the South Park “Vote or Die” episode says, most people who say “go out and vote!” are really saying “Go out and vote for my candidate, because you will!  So vote!  For who I want you to vote for!”

Now, as a famous future-rapper, and as an insider in the music industry, I am privy to certain “mailing lists” which are either sent by the bands to only me, or to everyone who takes 5 seconds to sign up for updates from the band through their websites.  It’s likely that, since it was so easy for me to join these mailing lists, they are open to anyone who wants to be on them, but I like to think they’re open only to me and people with the last name of “Biden”, “Obama”, and “Maverick” (I feel sorry for Joe Allen Maverick.  If his middle name had been “the” he would have been fucking famous).

“I also shoot moose from a helicopter.  Only for me, moose is code for Russians.  I’d make a joke about seeing them from my house, but that seems kind of worn out…”

But, given my insider status, I feel I should let you know of the three Indie bands that have approached me, through email, telling me to vote.  And I’ll also let you know why they only really want me to vote Obama.

And, I’m sure you’re wondering.  Who am I going to vote for this election Tuesday.  Well, I’ll post this email that Bob Barr sent out, and I think you know who I’m voting for…

“Unlike many politicians who claim to be pro-gun, Bob Barr walks the walk.  Yes, he exercises his right to own and carry firearms, just like me and millions of other law-abiding Americans.

And when he does, it’s a .45 Glock that he has holstered.   (As for me, I guess I’m a wimp since I carry only a .40 Glock.)

But enough about us.  This message is about you, your gun rights and a very special offer.  You see, this morning I received word that one of our most generous donors is giving the campaign a new, in the box, hard to find, 12 gauge Mossberg Model 590A pump shotgun.”

Yes… that’s right.  Bob Barr is going to GIVE ME A GUN!  I can use it for all sorts of cool things!  Like, shooting tin cans, robbing banks, or threatening whoever wins the 2008 election!

I know what you’re thinking…did I fire seven shots, or six?  Well, You gotta ask yourself one question…

But, all kidding aside, I’ll endorse the one candidate who had the best chance of winning.  He’s leading the polls, and really comes across as the best chance America has for real change this year.  That’s right, I will endorse…

Ron Paul.

“And then, Judy Garland threw water on me!  And I was all ‘Ohhhh what a world!'”

But, that’s enough of my own political agenda.  Here are the three bands that want us to vote (as long as we vote for who they want).

1.  The Faint

Who Are They?

The Faint is a Nebraska Indie/Dance-Punk/New-Wave band from Nebraska.  They have been around since 1995, and briefly had Connor Oberst, the lead singer of Bright Eyes, as a member, who is a person you might recognize if you have ever seen your significant other crying at an acoustic guitar driven song about a break up.

What They Say About Voting

We have some new shirts, hoodie and accessories available in our online store.
Broken Spindles’ newest album Document Number One is now available on iTunes.

*for Obama!


Visit The Faint Website

Online StoreVisit The Faint Websiteblank.wav recordVisit The Faint WebsiteThe Faint on FacebookThe Faint on YouTubeThe Faint on MyspaceThe Faint on MerchNowVote Obama!

Why They Want You To Vote For Obama

Granted, since they’re from Nebraska, they sound like they could easily go conservative with their political affiliations, except for the fact that their best album “Black-Wave Arcade” featured THREE separate songs casually referring to sex in their titles.  “Casual Sex” and “Sex is Personal” give you a little red flag that would seem to be against a social conservative ideal, but “Worked Up So Sexual” really clinches it all, as the song describes sexual entertainers with lyrics like “Smaller tits/ And younger limbs/ Can cause a fit of rivalry”.  Despite the fact that some current cinema seems to show that Mccain’s VP candidate is pro-casual sex, the republican party’s base centers around sexual conservatism, which seems to be a message that The Faint strongly disagree with.

Hey!  Hey you two!  Stop that! No!  I said NO!

Wait…what did that asterisk say?  Shit, it says Vote OBama, didn’t it?  I didn’t have to say anything other than “THEY TELL YOU TO VOTE FOR OBAMA” with that message, didn’t I?  Well, shit…

2.  Okkervil River

Who Are They?

Okkervil River is an Indie Band from Austin, Texas, that is quickly growing in both recognition and renown.  Their first album came out in 2002, but their most recent albums, Black Sheep Boy, The Stage Names, and The Stand Ins have been well recieved critically, and have caused the band to recieve a staggering increase in album sales.  But…Texas?  They’ve GOT to be conservative, right?

What They Say About Voting

Hey everyone,
As you know, it’s time to vote for the next president as well as important local political offices and ballot initiatives.  We’re touring in Europe on election day, but we all voted early, and you should too!

We’ve already been hearing about long lines, and want you to be prepared to stay in line and have your vote count. The longest waits will surely be on Election Day (this Tuesday Nov 4), and the more voters that get through the lines before election day, the shorter the lines will be for people less able to wait because of kids or jobs or school. There are reports of voter intimidation and suppression, but many think that long lines will turn away many more voters than all of those combined.

If you are able to vote early in your state, do yourself a favor — avoid the long lines, and vote early.  Click here to see if you qualify for early voting in your state.

If you do encounter long lines, here are some ways to have fun and ensure you can vote:

• Go with friends and/or bring phones, iPods, lawn chairs, food, reading materials, proper clothing, etc.

• Verify your vote and polling station BEFORE you head to the polls — don’t wait in line only to have a problem. You can do both by calling 1-866-OUR-VOTE or contact your local County Election Office. Or, use the Google Map voter tool.

• Help others stay in line too. Share your food, drink, music, reading materials, election protection information…We’re in this together.

• Make sure to take this number with you so that if you encounter any problems, you can talk to nonpartisan election lawyers who can help: 1-866-OUR-VOTE or be sure to request a provisional ballot.

• If you do run into any problems at the polls, Video The Vote and document election problems as they occur.

But most importantly:
Vote.  No matter what.  Don’t believe the polls if they say a candidate is winning or losing. They’ve been wrong before.

Happy voting and please pass this on!

Okkervil River

Why They Want You To Vote For Obama

Unlike The Faint, Okkervil River is remarkalby bi-partisan in their message.  And they go out of their way to be neutral in every way possible, which is quite admirable, and surprisingly unusual in the modern music industry.  While an Indie music song called “Castrate Bush” would likely get mad props from pitchforkmedia, the closest thing to a political song issued by this band was “The President’s Dead”, an incredibly non-political track about the assassination of a president, with lyrics including “If you died right then, well you know you’d be missed,/
But there’s no better state to cease to exist”

“Wait, they’re talking about me?  America?”

Now, I feel the need to pause here for a second.  I must say, Okkervil River goes out of their way to be non-political, and I honestly respect that.  You can vote any way you want, it’s your right, and I support you for doing it, but I think I’m in the majority when I say that when famous/successful people tell us how to vote, its condescending, and annoying.  Keep in mind, the only reason I’m pointing out the bands that are secretely trying to make you all vote Obama is because I don’t listen to the bands that want us all to vote Mccain… and when I do google searching, well… I’m glad I don’t listen to bands that would send me messages to vote for him…

That being said, you could see the votes of Okkervil River going either way, but when you look at it all, the message is clear.  First of all, they’re not just stressing to vote, they want you to vote early.  Voting which has proven to be predominantly pro-Obama.  And also, demographically, Okkervil River’s audience tends to be consist of college aged students and 20-something post grads which, surprisingly enough, support the 47 year old who looks young over the 72 year old with a thinning hair line.  But ultimately, it’s the company that Okkervil River keeps that shows their true intentions.

Of the bands that they have toured with recently, we have-

The Wrens, whose most recent website update discusses an Obama fundraiser.

The New Pornographers, who are CANADIAN!

The Green movement, since they decided to make their most recent tour eco-friendly, instead of recent musical tour methods which primarily used Baby-Christian Bones and baby-seals for fuel.  Lame.

3.  The Decemberists

Who Are They?

The Decemberists are quite possibly the most famous “Indie” band rocking your airwaves.  Well, they’re not really rocking your airwaves, since they have less radio hits than Modest Mouse (who?  Ohhhh, them…I remember 2004) .  But, they’re on Capital Records, which is sort of a big deal.  They’re from Portland, and employ a unique musical style that uses a variety of unusual instruments, with lyrics only an obsessive English Major can come up with.  They have a song called, “Shanty for Arethusa,” for fuck’s sake!

What They Say About Voting

The Decemberists News  | 11.3.2008

Points of Order:

Adored Mailing List Recipients,

The Decemberists

p.s. Watch the Decemberists on Conan O’Brien tonight!

p.p.s. Always The Bridesmaid: A Singles Series – Volume II (“Days of Elaine” b/w “Days of Elaine (long)” & “I’m Sticking With You”) is available tomorrow. Buy the vinyl here or at select indie stores (go to to find out where) and buy it online here.

Why They Want You To Vote For Obama
I will ignore that most of their email was an attempt to sell their own merchandise.  And yes, they seem to be bi-partisan, though much less politically so than Okkervil River.  But, coming from The Decemberists, it seems sort of hollow…
The Decemberists are from Oregon.  A state where Obama managed to get 72,000 people to attend a speech of his.  But, he had an interesting opening act.  Yes.  That’s right.  The Decemberists. What?  A free concert from a band on a major label!?  Hellllll yeah, I’ll go to that shit!  What, there’s a speech after?  Um, whatever, FREE CONCERT BITCHES!
Let’s put this in perspective.  If George W Bush sent out a mass email telling people to vote tomorrow, you’d assume he was telling you to vote for Mccain.  Then again, if George W Bush sent out a mass email telling people to vote tomorrow, he’d probably ruin the entire 2008 election for Mccain…

To be fair, The Decemberists are much cooler than George W. Bush.  But, after hosting an event for Obama that got more than 70,000 people, it’s hard to take their word as Bipartisan…

Just look at the fucking issues, GAWD!!!!..

I know this post has the potential to get a lot of shit from both sides of the aisle.  I might be playing on societies casting off of Mccain, I might be trying to push some anti-Obama agenda.  To be perfectly honest, I know who I will vote for today, and it is one of the two candidates above.  But who the fuck am I?

If I were a country music loving, Kenny Chesney worshiping music lover, I’d write the exact same article about bands that told me to vote for Mccain.  I’m not writing this to take a side, I’m just writing this to tell you all to make your own decision with the election, instead of listening to what your favorite bands say you should vote for.  To risk being unnecessarily cliche during an election, it is important that we all vote, and vote for what we feel to be the right direction for our country.  I will not publicly endorse a single candidate here, since you have most likely already decided who you will vote for, and because any attempt by me to convince you one way or another will be as shallow as these bands trying to make you vote for their favorite candidate.

So go.  Vote.  And think for yourself while doing so.  It’s your right as a citizen, and, ultimately, it’s your voice.  So use it.

Or… you know, worst case scenario, we can all just vote for Bob Barr…

About Jeff GoodSmith

I write on occasion. Sometimes it ends up here.
This entry was posted in Jaded Hipster, Meet Sarcastic List and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to The Bands That Told Me To Vote (And Why Their Message Isn’t Bipartisan)

  1. Ali says:

    White Obama looks like Jim Carrey.

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