The Georgia native’s newest project is a concept record that tackles racism, homophobia, and stepping out of your comfort zone. The songwriter and producer’s latest album takes aim at discrimination of all stars and stripes
As Butch Walker watched the tragedies and violence spewing out of the Charlottesville protests in 2017, it reminded him of the time when the Ku Klux Klan was asking for money in his hometown in Northwest Georgia. So he made a rock opera about it.
When the singer-songwriter and superproducer watched the footage of the Unite The Right rally, the white nationalist protest that resulted in the murder of civil rights activist Heather Heyer and the injury of several dozen counterprotesters, it didn’t strike him as a new phenomenon. Growing up in the small town of Cartersville, Ga., he had regularly seen such virulent hate on full display—even at an everyday red light.
“It was just normal,” Walker says incredulously from his Santa Monica studio. “You actually saw people putting money in the f**king bucket, just like a firemens’ donation.”
From there, he says, “I just started writing in a pattern after Charlottesville happened, and all these things started coming back into light.” It returned him to a time when, as a young man, he witnessed animosity against people who weren’t straight, white and Christian. While he didn’t perpetrate these acts, he admits he was “complicit” in them.
|4||6ft Middle-Age American Man||2:37|
|5||Fuck It (I Don’t Like Love)||3:14|
|6||Divided States Of America||1:56|
|7||Out In The Open||4:49|
|8||Torn In The USA||4:14|
|9||Blinded By The White||0:34|
|12||You Gotta’ Be Just Who You Are||3:59|
|13||Forgot To Say I Love You||5:53|