Oy, those mid-1980s synths. And double oy, those fucking syndrums, somehow taking a dub track that is basically a sparse bass, guitar, drums & synth and making it sound overproduced.
But wow, this song.
Steven Van Zant has long had one of the most interesting and varied careers in all of popular culture, but one of the most fascinating was his short mid-80s stint as “Little Steven, political songwriter.” And “Solidarity” is pretty much the epitome of that time, tying the name of a freedom-oriented political movement with a lyric that could be a cousin to Sly’s “Everyday People:”
Everybody wants the same things don’t they
Everybody wants a happy end
They just want to see the game on Saturday
They wanna be somebody’s friend
As deconstructed by Black Uhuru on their Grammy-winning album Anthem, “Solidarity” gains a key element not found on Little Steven’s version – actual singing. With Puma Jones and Duckie Simpson coming in on the choruses, and that damn synth weaving in and out and during the dub sections, when Michael Rose starts chanting “what we need! what we need!!” it feels like no one in the world is going to be able to keep him from getting it.
Official video for “Solidarity”
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