David Rovics: A singer with Cause
David Rovics grew up in a family of classical musicians in Wilton, Connecticut, and became a fan of populist regimes early on. By the early 90’s he was a full-time busker in the Boston subways and by the mid-90’s he was traveling the world as a professional flat-picking rabble-rouser. These days David lives in Portland, Oregon and tours regularly on four continents, playing for audiences large and small at cafes, pubs, universities, churches, union halls and protest rallies. He has shared the stage with a veritable who’s who of the left in two dozen countries, and has had his music featured on Democracy Now!, BBC, Al-Jazeera and other networks. His essays are published regularly on Counter Punch and elsewhere, and the 200+ songs he makes available for free on the web have been downloaded more than a million times. Most importantly, he’s really good. He will make you laugh, he will make you cry, he will make the revolution irresistible.
Al-Rasub: Tell us about yourself, where you born , your early life , schooling and
David Rovics : I was born in New York city, on Manhattan island. i grew up in a
woodsy suburb in Connecticut, about an hour away on the train from
Manhattan. i have one younger sister, a flute player and shiatsu
masseuse who lives in Boston, Massachusetts. my parents are both
university professors and classical musicians, they teach music.
Al-Rasub: How you start singing.
David Rovics: I grew up with music around the house, so singing was a natural thing
to do, along with playing an instrument. i started taking cello
lessons when i was 9, and started playing the guitar as a teenager,
partly as a rebellion against classical music, but mostly for fun.
Al-Rasub: You write your songs himself.
David Rovics: Yes, i write a lot of songs, but i also started out learning lots of
other people’s songs. now i mostly do my own songs. originally i
wanted to write songs because other people didn’t seem to be writing
about the things i wanted to write about.
Al-Rasub : Who inspired you that you start singing for causes around the world.
David Rovics : Originally it was the success of the anti-nuclear movement in the U.S.
that got me involved with activism. no particular individual, so much
as the movement itself which was the inspiration. from there lots of
other things sort of opened up and became more clear, in terms of what
goes on in the world, and the nefarious role of the U.S. in so much of
Al-Rasub: Your most memorable moment.
David Rovics :There have been many, but singing for 100,000 people in the center of
Berlin in 2002 when George w bush came to visit was a very memorable
Al-Rasub: How you spend your free time.
David Rovics: Hanging out with my daughter, Leila, and my wife, Reiko. writing,
reading, taking walks, playing music…
Al-Rasub: your message for whole world.
David Rovics: Capitalism is killing us all and needs to be overthrown by any means
that might be effective. and music is an important part of that
You can know much about David Rovics and about his videos and future plans on :