Search This Blog

Monday, 2 March 2015

Music through the ages - Abraham Lincoln.

Most people consider that the murder of Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth - a little known actor and Confederate spy - was politically motivated.
However what is not commonly known about Booth is that he also had a sideline job promoting young musicians whom he would exploit by enlisting their help in selling tickets and performing at events he would arrange.
These young men and women were clearly being exploited as they would receive no monetary compensation for their efforts, and instead Booth would only make vague promises about future opportunities where they may perform alongside a rising star of the time.
These promises were of course never delivered on, and due to his failure to follow through with what was in many ways a verbal contract a young woman called Elsie Walker contacted President Lincoln and informed him of her disappointment in Booth and claimed that his actions were ‘far from what would be expected from a gentleman.’
Lincoln agreed, and in return publicly stated that he would not rest until these practices were stamped out prior to going on record to say that ‘the music business is a swamp where the scum always seems to float to the top.’

Booth was allegedly then informed of this while drinking heavily in a local tavern.

Eye witnesses questioned later claimed that in response he criticized Lincoln at length and shouted ‘no man steals the money from my pockets. I party hard on that money’ prior to him overturning a table and storming out gesticulating wildly and heading in the direction of Ford’s Theatre.

The rest is as they say history.

In her memoirs Mary Lincoln (nee Todd) spoke fondly of her husband and his achievements, but expressed some regrets that Abe mistakenly thought that after challenging the slave trade he could do something about the music business.

From the 5th of March, in honour of Honest Abe, and his attempts to change the fortunes of struggling artists The New Hellfire Club have a run of live events arranged under the banner of the big band pay day.
All the money taken from ticket sales will be - after outgoing costs* - split evenly with the artists involved.
Please do support the cause.
Honest Abe wants you to.

* All outgoing costs are basic and the artists participating in the events can be made aware of them.

No comments:

Post a Comment