Various The People Speak

Released 45 days before his death, History Channel documentary The People Speak is the final act in American historian Howard Zinn's inspired career. This companion LP features performances of some of music's most famous protest songs, alongside a handful of new compositions. Representing four of the Twentieth Century's greatest dissidents, The People Speak opens with Bob Dylan's new cover of Woody Guthrie's "Do Re Mi" and Springsteen's ode to Steinbeck with "The Ghost of Tom Joad." The remainder of The People Speak divides its time between newly recorded tracks (Jackson Browne, Exene Cervenka and John Doe), classic lefty-laments (Randy Newman's "Sail Away") and half-baked covers (John Legend doing "What's Going On"). But what makes The People Speak so absorbing is found within the company it strives to keep. As modern politico-rock geared towards the under-30s set is at an influx, The People Speak refreshingly offers the NPR generation a new batch of rallying songs to call their own. (Verve)