From the moment rock and roll hit the airwaves, it has played a crucial role in politics and social movements around the world. Two iconic museums, the Newseum in Washington, DC, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, have announced a partnership to create an exhibit that explore the power of rock to change attitudes about patriotism, peace, equality and freedom.
The “Louder than Words: Rock, Power, and Politics” exhibit premiere May 20 at the Rock Hall in Cleveland, host city for the 2016 Republican National Convention July 18-21, 2016. On Jan. 6, 2017, the exhibit will move to the Newseum in Washington, DC, where it will be on display during the 2017 presidential inauguration events and through July 31, 2017.
“As the nation’s attention turns to the campaign trail, we’re excited to work with the Newseum on a timely exploration of music’s powerful role in politics,” says Greg Harris, president and CEO of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. “‘Louder Than Words’ highlights how artists have used their craft as a platform to express their views and shape public opinion.”
“We’re excited to work with the Rock Hall on this examination of the role music has and continues to play in the political process,” said Jeffrey Herbst, president and CEO of the Newseum. “It’s especially significant that an exhibit of this nature will be taking place here at the Newseum in the shadow of US Capitol during a time when millions of people will be in Washington to experience democracy in action.”
“Louder Than Words” will showcase the intersection between rock and politics with video, multimedia, photographs, periodicals, and artifacts. Among the items on display is the guitar John Lennon used at the Montreal bed-in for peace where he and Yoko Ono introduced the anti-war and counterculture anthem “Give Peace a Chance.” Beyond music’s influence on the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War and gender equality, the exhibit will also feature other significant moments and figures.