Press Information

Press release: July 9, 2008

Graham Nash Song Rallies Protesters to Denver

Crosby, Stills and Nash Dedicate Song to Colorado Governor

[Denver] -- For the 40th anniversary of the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, activists are using Graham Nash's famous song "Chicago" as a rallying cry for protesters to come to the DNC in Denver in August. On their tour stop in Denver recently, Crosby, Stills and Nash played "Denver" to a packed house and dedicated their performance of the song to Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, who was in the audience.

Graham Nash's original song, called "Chicago", contained the lyrics "Won't you please come to Chicago?" and "We can change the world, rearrange the world." These choruses rang out as anthems for young people who were fed up with the draft and the war in Vietnam. Unfortunately, the song was released in 1971, well after the 1968 convention. So although the song sounds like a call to the masses to converge on Chicago in 1968 and protest the war, it was never able to be used for this purpose.

Colorado activists saw the opportunity to use this song as a rallying cry for the 2008 DNC in Denver. With Graham Nash's permission, a local Colorado band called Freedom Kage was enlisted to re-record the song. They changed only the words from "Won't you please come to Chicago?" to "Won't you please come up to Denver?" The accompanying video, recorded on April 20, 2008, contains scenes from the 1968 DNC in Chicago, as well as a cut from Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley to Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper.

When the Crosby, Stills and Nash tour stopped in Denver at the Colorado Convention Center on June 26, they performed "Denver" for the first time. At David Crosby's suggestion, Graham Nash slyly dedicated it to Governor Bill Ritter, who was in the audience. The Governor's office had no comment on how the Governor felt about Crosby, Stills and Nash using their song to encourage protesters to converge on Denver for the 2008 DNC. Even though all the protest groups involved have pledged to act in a non-violent manner, the city is spending up to $18 million on security equipment and non-lethal weapons for the DNC, raising fears that the law enforcement is looking for trouble, as they were at the 1968 DNC.

Watch a video of both "Come Up to Denver" by Freedom Kage and "Denver" by Crosby, Stills and Nash:
http://www.comeuptodenver.org/
Pictures of Graham Nash with members of the Come Up to Denver Campaign:
http://www.comeuptodenver.org/gallery/

Laura Kriho, a Chicago native living in Colorado, is a spokesperson for the "Come Up to Denver" campaign. "I hope that activists around the country respond to the song and come up to Denver in August," says Kriho. "As in 1968, we need massive numbers of participants to make an impact."

The "Come Up to Denver" campaign is encouraging all progressive social change groups to come to the DNC in Denver, Aug. 24-28, 2008 and participate in a DNC Counter-Convention. There will be music, art, speakers, workshops, marches, rallies and networking opportunities for activists from around the country to plan "what's next" after the 2008 General Election. Environmental, peace, social justice, immigrant rights, human rights and the economy are just some of the issues that will be discussed at the Denver Counter-Convention.

The Crosby, Stills and Nash tour runs through August 9 and is now in the Midwest.
July 14: Rosemont Theatre, Rosemont, IL
July, 16: Morris Performing Arts Center, South Bend, IN
July 19, 2008: Meadow Brook Music Festival, Detroit, MI
http://www.crosbystillsnash.com/tour-dates

For more information, see:
http://www.comeuptodenver.org/
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Graham Nash Song Remade for 40th Anniversary of 1968 DNC

[Denver] - Forty years after the Democratic National Convention in 1968 in Chicago, Colorado activists are using the song Graham Nash wrote about the 1968 DNC to exhort peace activists to "Come Up to Denver" for the 2008 DNC in Denver. Click here to watch the music video and to download a FREE MP3 of the song:
http://www.comeuptodenver.org/

Nash's original song, called "Chicago", contained the lyrics "Won't you please come to Chicago?" and "We can change the world, rearrange the world." These choruses rang out as anthems for young people who were fed up with the draft and the war in Vietnam. Unfortunately, the song was written after the 1968 convention. So although the song sounds like a call to the masses to converge on Chicago in 1968 and protest the war, it was never able to be used for this purpose.

Colorado activists saw the opportunity to use this song as a rallying cry for the 2008 DNC in Denver. With Graham Nash's permission, a local band called Freedom Kage was enlisted to re-record the song. They changed only the words from "Won't you please come to Chicago?" to "Won't you please come up to Denver?"

"It is a sad sign of the times that none of the words in Graham's song needed to be changed except the place," says Laura Kriho, one of the organizers of the "Come Up to Denver" campaign. "We still have a war, we still have people being bound and gagged without due process, we are still in search of justice and freedom. If anything, we have less of it now than in 1968."

The "Come Up to Denver" campaign is encouraging any progressive social change group with a message to come to the DNC in Denver, Aug. 24-28, 2008 and participate in a DNC Counter-Convention. There will be music, art, speakers, workshops, marches, rallies and networking opportunities for activists from around the country to plan "what's next" after the 2008 General Election. Environmental, peace, social justice, immigrant rights, human rights and the economy are just some of the issues that will be discussed at the Denver Counter-Convention.

"The 1968 DNC was historic, and the 2008 DNC will be historic as well. Graham Nash has been a thread through both of these important events, working for the past 40 years for peace, justice and freedom worldwide." says Kriho. "I hope that activists around the country respond to the song and come up to Denver in August. As in 1968, we need massive numbers of participants to make an impact."

"This is going to be the biggest party Denver has ever seen," says Gregory Seaman, vocalist for Freedom Kage. "I'm excited to be part of it."

Capp Sehota, drummer for Freedom Kage says, "I've always said that I didn't want to be part of a revolution if I couldn't dance to it."

Graham Nash will be in Denver with his group Crosby, Stills and Nash on June 26 at the Wells Fargo Theatre at the Colorado Convention Center.

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