Dating back to the 1800s, May 1st has been a day of protest in America for worker's rights. Across the ocean into Europe, too, people take the day off as a day of political action. Working citizens have been publicizing general strikes surrounding May 1st all around New York-- and the country-- ever since the beginning of the year. Since this is one of the most musical cities in the world, many May 1st protests will involve some awesome performances and music-based marching in the streets. Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine announced one of the most exciting musical protests, a 1,000 guitar march
from Midtown Manhattan down to Union Square.
I went to the rehearsal for the Guitarmy in Bryant Park a couple of hours ago. There were at least 1,000 people in the park supporting the May 1st protest, and more than 100 musicians playing guitars, banjos, ukuleles, and one guy playing a cello. As I walked through the crowd, people of all ages were teaching each other the chord changes to "This Land is Your Land" by Woody Guthrie. Many people had Woody's "This machine kills facists" slogan written onto their guitars. The protester's departed from Bryant Park at 2PM, and they will meet at Union Square at 4PM, where they will unite with other protesters for a concert featuring Tom Morello
, Das Racist
, Dan Deacon
, Immortal Technique
and others. More on today's free show in the park soon!