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Roger McGuinn: The Politician Song

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Posted on January 30th, 2012 at 1:16 pm

Did you know that Roger McGuinn, co-founder of the legendary folk-rock band The Byrds, wrote songs for a Broadway musical in the 1970s? The show never made it to the stage, but thankfully for the rest of us, the The Byrds recorded and released those songs on several albums in the 1970s.

One of the those songs is "I Wanna Grow Up to Be a Politician," and even today, its sharp-witted satire has made it a favorite of many.

Roger explains the story behind the song and why he still gets a special thrill when he hears it playing on NPR, which frequently uses it for shows like "Talk of the Nation" and "Car Talk."

Find out why Roger thinks the song still resonates in today's political environment. Then watch a special Growing Bolder exclusive performance of the song, recorded in Roger's home studio.

Want to hear more behind-the-scenes stories from Roger?

Entertainment - Music, GB Topics, Entertainment, GB Topics - Big Names, Entertainment - Theater, Syndication - Orlando Sentinel

broadway - npr - roger mcguinn - the byrds - folk music - jacques levy - i wanna grow up to be a politician

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  • Posted 12:48pm March 9th, 2012


    Thank YOU so much for your comment(s). I live on a 5 acre ranch here in Northern Colorado and have raised Big Red Irish Setters for over 35 years and have also been a radio personality for that amount of time as well. No Blue didn't "chase a possum up a hollow limb" but he Bo and Lucy have chased and ran down their share of rabbits, squirrels and you name it on the Cody Ranch. You guys might be interested in possibly doing an article about myself. I've worked at the smallest of radio stations to some of the biggest, in fact doing Mornings in Market #3 at WBBM-FM, B96 in Chicago. I've broken two Guinness Book World Records, raised millions of dollars for charities, heck, I've even rode a riding lawn mower from Cincinnati to New Orleans LA at a clip of around 5 - 8 mph. Bill, I think I could amaze your writers and staff with the life I've lived. I even started off in the U.S. Coast Guard picking up the people that jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge! I've had an unbelievable life, am good friends with Roger and Camilla and am dedicated to your efforts at Growing Bolder. If you've got an email address, I'd love to send you a plethora of articles, airchecks, pictures et al that I seriously think you could use in an upcoming story.

    It's good to know you must be a Roger and a Byrd's fan if you know the words to "Old Blue"

    "Wild" Bill Cody

  • Bill Shafer..jpg
    Bill Shafer
    GB Staff
    Posted 11:41am March 9th, 2012

    Hey Wild Bill!

    Thanks for the kind words. We are SO proud of all that Roger has done with us. It's like we've found a GOLD MINE of one of the most important parts of rock history. I only wish more people knew about HOW MUCH ROGER has done here. Thank you VERY much for doing your part to let people know.

    And thank you for your GREAT suggestion about Old Blue! That's awesome that you've named TWO of your dogs after that song. But I must know, did Blue chase a possum up a hollow limb? 


    Regular Bill 

  • Posted 11:30am March 9th, 2012

    This has always been one of my favorite McGuinn/Levy tunes. But you really must hear it in it's original form with the late Clarence White's wild string-bender lead! It will flat blow you away. In fact I wish Growing Bolder would maybe just add the Byrd's Original Recording to this piece. Once again, you guys outdid yourselves, and thank you once again for another great McGuinn piece

    Next you might want to focus on dogs. And have Roger do his legendary "Old Blue". I was so smitten the first time I heard that song, I named one of my Big Red Irish Setters "Blue". He has long since past away but I have "Blue II" lying right by my side as I write this! Thanx again to Growing Bolder, as I pass this on to hundreds of interested individuals.

    "Wild" Bill Cody

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