By Melissa Campbell
Typically, when people think of “labor music,” the old standards of, “Solidarity Forever,” and “Union Maid,” come to mind. The IAM’s unioNation™ will change the mindset of labor music and the stereotypical sound that comes with it.
Inspired by Cody Wilder’s presentation of, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall,” for his Leadership class, Instructor Henry Bagwell knew there had to be other IAM members that were musically talented. When the band came together at W3, they created not just a name, unioNation™, but many cover/satire and original songs. Throughout the next year, members of unioNation™ played concerts at the 2012 Grand Lodge Convention in Toronto, the Retiree’s Conference in Las Vegas, Labor Conferences in New Mexico, Vancouver, and Baltimore, and meeting again at W3 to cut their first CD.
No matter what style of music is preferred, it can be found on unioNation™ Machinists Music Project. Country, folk, rock, big band, even a touch of rap and beatbox – it can all be found with a strong labor message. At the end of a hard day, you’ll find yourself, “Bone Tired,” knowing that you’re just a “Working Man,” trying to drive that “Long Road,” home. You may wonder from time to time, “How can we let this go on?” Not to worry, you’ll rest easy knowing that the “backbone of a nation is union power,” and that truly does, say it all.