Role Model to Superheroes: Phil Ochs (Anti-Drug Ad Spot)

“Hi, this is Phil Ochs.  Ever since the assassination of John Kennedy things began to fall apart in this country. People started caring less for each other and thought less of themselves. Some tried to escape as we suffered through two reactionary administrations. The war in Vietnam and the use of hard drugs have taken many lives. Now the war is over but drugs continue their destruction. I believe it’s time to turn the corner. I think we can get America back if we get ourselves back — you don’t need drugs, you don’t need gurus. You only need to believe in yourself. Remember it only takes a small circle of friends to get back to a life based on reality — rather than escape.”

“Philip David Ochs (pronounced /ˈoʊks/) (December 19, 1940 – April 9, 1976) was an American protest singer (or, as he preferred, a topical singer) and songwriter who was known for his sharp wit, sardonic humor, earnest humanism, political activism, insightful and alliterative lyrics, and haunting voice. He wrote hundreds of songs in the 1960s and released eight albums in his lifetime.

Ochs performed at many political events, including anti-Vietnam War and civil rights rallies, student events, and organized labor events over the course of his career, in addition to many concert appearances at such venues as New York City’s Town Hall and Carnegie Hall. Politically, Ochs described himself as a “left social democrat” who became an “early revolutionary” after the protests at the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago led to a police riot, which had a profound effect on his state of mind.”