Home of the Brave

In honor of Veterans’ Day – here’s the song I wrote some time ago to draw attention to the plight of our homeless and disabled Veterans. Being a veteran myself, it bothers me greatly that some of our brave service men and women still suffer from lack of care and assistance. Please remember them, and remind your congressional representatives and senators that there is still much work to do.

I hope you appreciate the song.  Thank a veteran.

Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in Folk, General Conversation, Music, Music Performance, Music Recording, songwriter, Video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Long time no see…

Yes I’ve been neglecting my blog for a long time.  If you follow me me on Facebook, you’ve seen a few things I have not posted here, until now.

My first effort at Live-streaming was a complicated mess.  I’m not thrilled with it at all, but not ashamed to share either – for those with Facebook access, try this link:

I’ve been laying low at home, telecommuting to work, and spending WAY too much time doing that (87 hours last week, 64 the week before).  And when the work day finally ends, I really don’t want any more “screen time”. Yet there are Zoom meetings with friends & community.  I’m screened-out.

And then, there’s the news. Remember the song I posted on June 16th called
Bad Apples“?
SADLY, that song just stays relevant these days. And it’s about such a deep-seeded problem (police brutality with racial bias) that many can’t tell where the roots of it lay.  It has crept up slowly until becoming so big, it cannot be ignored.

Some years back, at some large city police department, fear got mixed with military tactics and weapons. Civility was doomed. Why is the TRAINING: “Shoot Repeatedly to Kill”?
Is it because police fear the suspect will be able, even wounded, to turn and kill them instantly?
Or could it be that dead suspects can’t testify?

When I was kid in Virginia, our local Sheriff’s Deputy, lived right in our community. He had a police revolver. He kept it in the glove box of his car. He was not afraid of his neighbors.  At the same time, city kids (mostly black) were seeing a completely different world.  I was too sheltered and unaware to even think if there were questions to be asked. And I was completely ignorant of the plight of black kids in my own area who had an entirely different view of Sheriff Deputies.

I have several good friends in Law Enforcement. I know it causes them pain to hear the outcries of condemnation spread with such a broad brush, particularly when they know they are adhering to their TRAINING.  But truthfully, that’s the same kind of “Guilt by Association” being heaped on every group these days, and that has been the “norm” for Black Americans since the day their ancestors arrived in chains in 1619.

Now it appears that more people of every ethnicity and hue are aware and talking and asking questions. It gives me a glimmer of hope for change in hearts that for a “long time, no see”.

Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
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Live Stream today

I am about to do a Live Stream on Facebook 12 July 2020, at 2PM – Mountain Daylight Time (that’s 1PM in AZ & CA, 3PM in Chicago, and 4PM on the East Coast).
And you’re invited to watch this experiment.

Those of you who follow me on Facebook will know that I have struggled to get my expensive technology that I use for recording to audio to a Facebook stream.  I finally gave up and will simply use my cellphone.   But it works, so please join in!

For the Facebook Live Link just click the picture at the appointed time!   It will last only about 30 minutes.

I’m doing this as part of the Las Cruces “aLive Music Festival” that has been going on all weekend. It’s our town’s last gasp of live entertainment before going back to isolation on Monday. We have about 12 venues from where performances are streamed, but for safety, I decided my contribution would be from home.

I’m a bit trepidatious about pulling this off, but hey, it’s working for others so why not me?

Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in General Conversation, Music, Music Performance, songwriter, Video | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Home of the Brave

I could not wait for a decent production to share this song.  Maybe it’s because I feel the winds of change blowing all around us. I hope so. One day I will re-record it with more attention to detail.

This song is dedicated to Veterans who are still suffering and struggling to get help. And it’s also for our elderly and disabled folks who, in like manner, have to fight a bureaucracy to get the help they need.

There are so many basic human needs unmet by our current “system” and I agree that the FIRST to tackle are those programs that do actual harm to our communities, like policing can.

But there are other programs for which money alone may not resolve their inabilities.  Healthcare – and I mean caring for people’s health, NOT feeding money to Insurance bureaucracies – is among the most problematic as I see it.

As we re-arrange our funding priorities, can we address this issue too?

Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in Folk, General Conversation, Guitars, Music, Music Performance, Music Recording, songwriter, Video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bad Apples

Recent news compelled me to write this song.

I don’t know about you, but to me, it sure seems odd that there would be so many “Bad Apples”.  But there they are, in a disgusting parade across my TV screen.

Are they really “Bad” or just “Drawn that way” like Jessica Rabbit? And by “Drawn”, I mean “Trained”.

Let’s not kid ourselves. There ARE Bad Apples. And when there are so many bad apples, it’s likely time to suspect there’s something wrong with the tree.

Let’s face facts, our Police have an awesome responsibility on their shoulders and we the public have been screaming at them to better handle a plethora of circumstances that seem more complex each day.

I pity the police who are trained in ways that do not meet the situations they are sent to resolve. We want them to “protect and serve”, but the system has created a militaristic force trained to “dominate and punish”.  I support building parallel forces to augment and in some situations, replace police officers in jobs our police are not trained to handle – like psychiatric counselling for instance. How can we expect them to handle the mentally distressed when people with PhDs still scratch their heads over some of these troubled souls?

Clouding all of this is the hyperbolic language of protest. For Example: “Defund the Police”.  A little investigation and listening will reveal that the phrase doesn’t really mean “no policing allowed at all”. Instead, it means “Let’s re-examine the roles we have asked police to perform and devise a better structure, with new added talents, that can transform “Law Enforcement” into “Crime Avoidance”.

A real plan won’t fit on a poster, only a divisive little snippet will, and that’s a tactic intended to gain attention. It certainly does that, but now it becomes our society’s  challenge to explore what is attached to the hyperbole and create a workable path forward. That’s tough when you’re pissed off, but someone has to remain the adult. Let’s try to assume that mantle and work this out for the good of children everywhere.

Darrell Elmer Rodgers
Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Humorist
Posted in blues, General Conversation, Music, songwriter, Video | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment