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Still The One: A Rock'n'Roll Journey to Congress and Back Paperback – July 28, 2016
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About the Author
John Hall is a musician, songwriter, singer, and recording artist who has worked with music legends ranging from Janis Joplin and Bonnie Raitt to Chet Atkins, Bela Fleck, Little Feat, and James Taylor.
His environmental concerns led him into community activism, as one of the movers of the antinuclear movement. In 1976 his song “Still the One” was a worldwide hit. In 1979 he cofounded Musicians United for Safe Energy with Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne, and Graham Nash. In 1990 he began serving in the legislature of Ulster County, New York. In 2007 he was elected to the US House of Representatives, having already served in the Ulster County New York legislature and the Saugerties New York Board of Education.
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His work opens with an attempt to win an Optimist Club public-speaking contest, when he was only seven years old. How formative of his future this one event became, and it was due to the urging of his parents!
Here's a direct quote from the book, right after the above recollection: “Without a positive attitude and belief that I could make a difference, I never would have walked away from college to play in the nightclubs of Georgetown and Greenwich Village.” The Greenwich Village music scene – with all its wonderful artist's – is shared wonderfully in following pages.
John later pulls us deep into the workings of Congress, maddening as they are. Use of 'nonworking Congress' is far more apt here; its now infamous for its inability to pass bills, as well as it its willingness to shut down the federal government completely.
Equally enjoyable are the further insights into our author's artistic side. Numerous views of the American music business are provided, as only a survivor of it (who's also greatly successful within the industry), could offer.
John has lost family members and friends to health issues. His heartache palpable as we read of his losses, they also helped him push harder as a Congressman, for health care to all Americans. His dedication to our veterans is unflagging. The shameful story of a former Navy veteran – who survived the sinking of two ships on which he was serving – is a haunting tale which must never be forgotten.
For decades, Hall's done wonderful work as a volunteer fundraiser. This includes his passionate dedication to fighting global warming. His book is but one of many gifts to us all. I'm thrilled to have it in my library, and truly enjoyed reading every page of it. Thank you, John!