Don't Stop Thinking about the Music (Paperback)

The Politics of Songs and Musicians in Presidential Campaigns

By Benjamin S. Schoening, Eric T. Kasper

Lexington Books, 9780739165478, 318pp.

Publication Date: December 19, 2011



In this insightful, erudite history of presidential campaign music, musicologist Benjamin Schoening and political scientist Eric Kasper explain how politicians use music in American presidential campaigns to convey a range of political messages. From "Follow Washington" to "I Like Ike" to "I Got a Crush on Obama," they describe the ways that song use by and for presidential candidates has evolved, including the addition of lyrics to familiar songs, the current trend of using existing popular music to connect with voters, and the rapid change of music's relationship to presidential campaigns due to Internet sites like YouTube, JibJab, and Facebook. Readers are ultimately treated to an entertaining account of American political development through popular music and the complex, two-way relationship between music and presidential campaigns.

About the Author

Benjamin Schoening is assistant professor of music at the University of Wisconsin-Barron County and music director of the Red Cedar Choir in Rice Lake. Eric T. Kasper is assistant professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Barron County and the municipal judge in Rice Lake.